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What is A Metaverse – Types of Metaverses Existing Today

A metaverse is a digital space just like a physical space where the participants can interact just like the real world and entertain with similar experiences but they are limitless and our world is not. 

Since Facebook announced they have changed their name to Meta, the speculations have been hyped and millions of average users are curious how it’s different from the real world and facebook itself that they used to know once. Many ask basic questions: ‘ What’s a metaverse,’ is it more like ‘Augmented Reality’ or does it mean ‘external space’? Some posted on forums more real questions ‘How is it Relatable to Our Daily Lives’ etc. We are going to answer all these questions below before diving into the existing metaverses that have been launched by the companies and how they are different from Facebook’s ‘Meta.’

Let’s see below what is a metaverse and what’s not. This post will clearly explain all FUDs in a single read. You will become clear about the metaverses existing and many more new to come. 

Is Metaverse Just A Virtual Reality?

First thing first, we must understand what’s not a metaverse to understand what’s. People often confuse Metaverse with virtual reality and that it’s derived from there. That’s not the case. The fact is, metaverse is not restricted to just a digital realm in which only virtual or augmented reality can operate alone. Contrarily, a metaverse is more than that. 

Metaverse Vs Digital Theme Park

There are others who believe a metaverse is just an extension of a digital theme park where you can interact with the people online–that’s all. To some extent it’s correct but not all of it. The metaverses can be similar to theme parks but digital theme parks can be restricted (to certain activities) to a certain extent while the metaverses are more than that. In a nutshell, a metaverse can offer the whole world of different things including but not restricted to experiences, sensation and engagement. So a digital amusement park can be a small part of a metaverse. 

Is Metaverse A Game– Fortnite Vs Metaverse?

Some people believe a metaverse is just a game like Fortnite. This is where they somehow get it right. If anyone compares a metaverse with Fortnite, he is quite right. The idea of a Metaverse is more like entering a new world of gaming where the players are given all the opportunities and experiences. As most of the features of a Metaverse resemble the gaming worlds in a digitally closed environment. The users in a Metaverse or a Fortnite-like-game are given chances to win rewards, spend their earnings or buy items. Those metaverses offering rewards for the participants are subject to change depending on their contribution. 

The main difference between Fortnite and a metaverse is, the gaming environ is subject to a certain limit while the Metaverse is n’t. Even Fortnite is limited in comparison of its expanse to a Metaverse. We are close to deriving the true definition of a Metaverse. 

What Is the Metaverse?

So the definition of a Metaverse is– an expansive digital space where the participants can interact with each other in real life and experience what they experience in the real world and even more than real-time world. So it’s not subject to just buying and experiencing merchandise in an enclosed digital gaming world. A Metaverse offers you everything digitally and the opportunities are not subject to limitations. It’s a wide-expanse digital realm that helps users experience more than just what they can experience in a game or a real world. There are few characteristics and elements that are not available in the “real world” but you can experience in a Metaverse. 

Characteristics of a Metaverse

We have discussed below the characteristics and important elements of a metaverse that define it. They are set metaverses apart from everything else physical or digital.

Infinity of a Metaverse

Everything is limited in the real world where we live in and operate, while in a Metaverse nothing is limited. A Metaverse is infinite. 

A Metaverse Is Synchronous

The metaverses are synchronous and the users can communicate frequently with each other hailing from different parts of the world. Since a metaverse is also synchronous the interaction among the users is real-time. If they are interacting in the metaverse that also means they are interacting in the real world. 

The Importance of Prosperity of A Metaverse 

One of the core features of a metaverse is, it’s prosperous being an extension of a real world. So the participants can do everything and enjoy all the experiences. For example the teachers can deliver their lectures, official meetings can be held, multiplayer games can be played and almost everything else that you can think of including live concerts and talk shows. 

Interoperability 

Interoperability in a metaverse is what makes experience worthwhile and it’s where all major entities are looking forward to. However, at the same time, the idea becomes controversial as Metaverses are also our real world extensions to some extent. So to sum up the interoperability of a Metaverse is ‘many metaverses can coexist’ at the same time and operate in one another. For example if you are part of Meta metaverse you can still use the avatars from other metaverse. Thus portability of your digital arsenal makes metaverses unique and more than our real world. 

Even though all the different companies can create their own specific metaverses and they can work in collaboration. The limits are endless. Since we have come to distinguish what a metaverse is and what’s not, let’s discuss below some of the metaverses offered by the popular entities. 

The Sandbox

Another very popular metaverse, more like Decentraland, is the Sandbox. This metaverse also has an enormous list of opportunities and virtual experiences. You can register, create properties, avatars and use the provided tools without paying for them. 

How Does The Sandbox Work?

We have discussed in detail all the 3 important components used the Sandbox metaverse below:

VoxEdit: You can use VoxEdit for creating your own 3D models and developing your own products such as animals, anime and characters of different kinds. You have to have some kind of creative pulse though and motivation. This is an amazing tool. Whatever products you create are called your ASSETS on the principle scalability of ERC-1155 token in NFT and Non-NFT token types. 

Sandbox Marketplace: This marketplace offers a platform within the Sandbox metaverse to offer your ASSETS to other users. In order to trade them you need to upload them on InterPlanetary File System (IPFS). 

Sandbox Game Maker: One of the highly differentiating features of this Metaverse that sets it apart from others is its tools to develop your own 3D games cost free. 

SAND Token – All the trading is transacted using their ERC-20 token “SAND.” The users can earn or buy SAND tokens for games, equipment and characters. 

ESTATES – It has only 166,464 LAND plots that you can buy and if you combine more plots it becomes your ESTATE. 

What Makes The Sandbox Unique?

There are many things that sets the Sandbox apart from other metaverses. One of its binding features is since it’s built on Ethereum blockchain, it covers the gas fees which makes it affordable for the users. The other important feature is customization of everything that can be sold back in the marketplace as NFTs. 

Decentraland

Decentraland is one of the early Metaverses which has grown its own community of users. Decentraland was launched in 2016, being this old the money traded in this Metaverse is continuously rising. It attracts advertisers and common users at the same time. The advertisers find the right type of audiences to promote their products. The Decentraland Metaverse is noticeable because it is built on blockchain and its community resides within it. It’s fully decentralized compared to the Meta of Mark Zuckerberg. 

So the virtual world of Decentraland exclusively exists on its blockchain. So the community memebers can partake in voting against changes on the decentraland, NFTs, Real Estate and owning the characters by using the governance token MANA which are stored in users wallets. 

The Metaverse of Decentraland is based on three fundamental layers. 

  1. The first layer uses smart contracts to keep records of ownerships 
  2. The second layer is responsible for recording all the LAND data records, uploaded virtuals items on the Metaverse 
  3. The third layer is used for establishing peer-to-peer communications in real-time and the users experience smooth interactions due this one. 

While an underlying programming language is used for creating dynamics in the Metaverse in the shape of 3D models and different scenes. 

The holders of MANA are allowed to trade it in the marketplace. While trading whether buying or selling LAND, some MANA tokens are always burned to keep the supply scarce. This helps its price to be deflationary. 

How Does Decentraland Work?

Decentraland has two cryptocurrency tokens–LAND and MANA. MANA can be used for voting on the platform for different reasons which we have discussed below in detail how exactly that works. 

MANA: For voting on different decisions taken on the platform, the participants need to lock their wrapped MANA (wMANA) into DAO. Each wMANA is the representative of a single vote for the proposed changes. The participants collect these tokens by selling collected items on the Decentraland platform. Anyone can do anything in this Metaverse. 

LAND: The NFT part of Decentraland which signifies owning of the real estate on this platform also gives the right to the owner to partake in the governance and agree to disagree.  

You need to have a wallet like MetaMask to participate on this platform. The participants on this Metaverse are allowed to create or trade the virtual real estate properties that they possess. So any user can buy or sell on this platform. 

What Makes Decentraland Metaverse Unique?

The Decentraland Metaverse is entirely based on the Ethereum blockchain and is controlled by hundreds of different Smart Contracts which ensure the liberty and rights of the users. Due to these smart contracts the users can participate in everything on this platform like interacting with other people from all over the world, acquire virtual possessions and also use them for different things and partake in trading in the Decentraland Marketplace

What sets Decentraland apart from the traditional gaming platforms is it’s exclusively decentralized so all decisions and rights lie in the hands of the users. So start earning its governance tokens and use them for whatever purpose you want to use them or just hold them as well. 

Bloktopia

Bloktopia is something you would not have heard of in the blockchain community. Is it a very rare phenomenon. It’s a “VR Crypto skyscraper” built on the Polygon blockchain. It earns its name from its composition being built on real estate “bloks” that users can buy with $BLOK token. There are 21 levels built on it that are said to be “pay recognition” total Bitcoin supply. 

This Metaverse offers a wide array of space to the crypto users hailing to the different levels. All these users can access the same crypto information and immersive content in one place. Its revenue model is based on equal sharing through NFTs. So whatever is earned by this platform is shared in the form of NFTs. 

On the contrary to other Metaverses, Bloktopia has used the real-time 3D creation engine “World” for the true-to-life deeper immersion on a much deeper level with classy visual experience for its users. 

How Does Bloktopia Work?

This Metaverse Bloktopia comprises 21 levels in total. The users are required to reach the top level. We have discussed it below in detail.

Spawned: You have been spawned as you enter the Metaverse Bloktopia outside the skyscraper. 

Level One: Welcome to the very first level where you will see every new Bloktopian user setting first foot. It has descriptive charts, navigations maps and even a helpdesk more like a welcome desk. You need to register first here for the events you are going to take. You will also encounter commercial spaces like Binance and others advertising their offers. 

Penthouse and Gaming: This is by far desired by all the Bloktopia users. It’s located on the 21st floor of the skyscraper showcasing the penthouse solely kept for gaming alone. The users can compete here in different games for BLOK.

Auditorium: It is the place known to host most of the crypto events of the world. As soon as the user registers on the first level he is sent in this auditorium to attend events. Later the user is rewarded with BLOK tokens. 

How is Bloktopia Unique than Other Metaverses?

The immersive engine used to create 3D experience makes it an exceptional journey. The users also get to earn tokens by its learning program. 

Some of its key features are mentioned below:

  • Learning – The users are given chance to earn rewards by learning about cryptocurrencies 
  • Create – Use tools to create amazing things including developing many things with SDK. 
  • Land leasing – Just like Decentraland you can possess virtual properties and lease them for rent. 
  • Events – Participate in the events and enjoy the most beautiful immersive visual experience. 

Meta (Previously Facebook)

Mark Zuckerberg, seeing the dive of millions of people into metaverses, launched his own Metaverse “Meta” which is popularly known as Mark Zuckerberg’s Metaverse and converted the whole Facebook ecosystem into it. At least that’s what he thinks. It’s the most popular metaverse on the internet these days even though it’s not much of a metaverse. Mark is deeply bent upon making it a success even though his ventures to create his own currency has seen sheer criticism. 

Youtube

Meta claims to offer Facebook users the virtual dominions to partake in commutes online. Most of the experts are of the view that Mark’s version of Metaverse is more like separate virtual work instead of continuation of Facebook. The users are required to wear Oculus headsets, owned by Facebook Inc (now Meta) itself. 

How Meta (Facebook Metaverse) Works?

Since its announcement, it’s still in development. Earlier Mark planned a currency Diem and the project had to be halted due to many concerns by the US government and others. Their team is constantly working on Meta and many projects are still in the pipeline. Only time will tell how they are going to achieve their goals. One thing is for sure, Mark Zuckerberg’s Metaverse is not going to be a decentralized entity. 

Star Atlas

Image: cryptofacil

Star Atlas is an MMO game built on the Solana blockchain set in the year 2620. It’s very appealing and immersive visuals sets it apart from other metaverses discussed here. It’s a multiplayer video game that you can become part of based on a space theme. Since it’s a themed game the story is about the colonized universe where the users are given tasks to hunt for the hidden treasure to earn coins —$ATLAS and $POLIS. The players can earn these tokens while participating in this game in general. Later they can use these cryptocurrencies to trade assets. 

How Does Star Atlas Work?

There are two major governing tokens on Atlas platform which we have discussed below:

$ATLAS: $ATLAS is the token used for trading NFTs in this metaverse. The users can earn these tokens by mining ores, developing properties or simply buying and selling on the platform. Every asset in this metaverse is an NFT so if you create an item it’s owned solely by you and you can sell it on your own choosing. 

$POLIS: This one is the governing currency that the players can use for playing games. If you have earned it you can form your own groups, develop communities and do whatever you want to. This token empowers players to vote as well. 

The assets created on this platform are interoperable, meaning your can port them into other metaverses. This does not happen in many metaverses but your created items can be ported from here to wherever you want. 

How is Star Atlas a Unique Metaverse?

The users have all the rights as much as the creators themselves. They entirely own everything and can retain their rights for the future development of this game. The governance system of this game gives chances to the players to do whatever they want to even out-vote creators if they want to. It makes Star Atlas unique and provably fair. 

Radio Caca

Radio Caca is a one-of-a-kind metaverse which considers users as the builders. They can build their own social network, any ecosystem they want, even a custom economic organization and so on. Radio Caca is a GameFi project built for the USM Metaverse developed on Binance Smart Chain. They also built the Metamon P2E game which became instantly popular and people know more about it than Radio Caca itself. 

What Is the USM Metaverse?

A USM Metaverse considers users as its builders that makes it very unique in the domain of Metaverses. They can build anything they want in the gamefi ecosystem. 

The digital products are represented as NFTs. You can buy their trademark NFT “KISS-UP DOG”. 

Conclusion 

To conclude it, without the interoperability of blockchains and their co-existences metaverses would have failed miserably. However, they could not have even existed in the first place without a blockchain unless someone governs them. While the blockchain technology has made it possible for all these metaverses to co-exist and interoperate. So the metaverses are not separate spaces, governed by people rather they exist and more will be developed soon and co-exist without any governing authorities or people but the blockchains only. 

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