Looking for the best play-to-earn blockchain games?
You’ll love this list!
I’ve researched and analyzed top NFT and crypto games that allow players to earn while playing. When adding games to this list, I’ve considered market capitalization, earning opportunities, the number of active users, and overall popularity among players.
Without further ado, here are the best play-to-earn games on the market right now.
1. Alien Worlds
Blockchain: WAX, BNB Chain
Alien Worlds is a decentralized metaverse on the Ethereum, WAX, and BSC blockchains. It was released in December 2020 by Dacoco. According to DappRadar, it had more than 700,000 active users in the past 30 days, which made it lead the play-to-earn blockchain games charts.
In this metaverse, players mine Trillium (the game’s currency), own land, complete quests, explore planets, and more. Most importantly, this game has many earning opportunities, which is what makes it so popular.
This metaverse consists of six planets, all of which operate independently as decentralized autonomous organizations (DAO) and have their own resource strategy and games. Learn more about these organizations in my guide to DAOs.
When players start the game, they get a basic shovel which can then be used to get resources from various planets. However, as you might expect from a free starter shovel, its mining power is not very big. The goal is to acquire better equipment in order to have more success at mining, i.e., mine more Trillium. Players can find better tools while mining or by completing missions.
During interplanetary missions, players complete various tasks and quests. That increases their chances of getting a valuable NFT reward.
The main NFTs in Alien Worlds are land, avatars, artifacts, tools, weapons, minions, and missions, and they’re depicted as trading cards.
Land in Alien Worlds
One of the reasons this game became so popular is because land in the game holds huge value. Every one of the land plots is held by a different player and a portion of the Trillium a player mines goes straight to the landowner. Furthermore, the landowner can set that commission. Land ownership is represented by owning a land NFT card.
When players mine on the land that is not sold yet, i.e., belongs to the Federation, the default commission is 20%. There are twenty types of land, each one with unique attributes.
The Trillium that players get through mining, or other means, can be used on multiple different things. For example, for purchasing various items and participating in quests. However, players can also stake it to participate in the governance system, it can be staked to a planet, and used to increase the Shine of NFTs.
Genre: Card game, strategy
Platform: Android, iOS, browser
Blockchain: Hive, WAX
Splinterlands is another of the best play-to-earn blockchain games often found in the top lists of crypto games with the most active players.
Put simply, this is a digital collectible card game with rapid one-on-one battles, similar to Magic: The Gathering Arena or Hearthstone. However, unlike other digital card games, in Splinterlands, players own their cards. The goal of the game is to build up collections of cards with various statistics and use them to battle other players.
According to its website, “Each battle has a different combination of combat rules, total Mana cap, and playable Splinters.” Because of that, strategy is another essential element of this game. The strategy lies in deck creation and this is where all decision-making power is, as battles are automated and players don’t control the cards during fights.
Furthermore, Splinterlands provides players with multiple earning opportunities.
Players can try the game for free. However, they need to pay $10 to join ranked battles – and this is the way players can earn money in this game.
Every time a player wins a ranked battle, they get rewarded with Dark Energy Crystals, which have real-world value.
Players can also trade, sell, and even lease their cards, which is another way of earning in Splinterlands. According to its website, “The cards in your collection are compatible with 3rd party marketplace platforms such as OpenSea, PeakMonsters, Monster Market, and elsewhere.”
3. Benji Bananas
Developer/Publisher: Animoca Brands
Genre: arcade game
Platform: Android, iOS
Blockchain: Ethereum, Polygon
Benji Bananas is a physics-based arcade mobile game where players guide Benji the ape through vines to collect bananas and other valuable items.
What’s interesting is that this game was developed back in 2013, but Animoca Brands took over in 2022 and decided to turn Benji Bananas into a blockchain game.
Because it was originally developed as a traditional mobile game, it’s very fun to play and its mechanics are very addicting, which can’t be said for other web3 games. It’s no wonder Benji Bananas has so many downloads and active users – 50 million downloads so far and over 400,000 active wallets in the past 30 days. (Data source: AppMagic, and DappRadar).
Play-to-Earn Model in Benji Bananas
PRIMATE is the game’s native fungible token and players can earn it by performing well in the game.
For example, during the last season, the average number of bananas collected per game and the average distance achieved per game during the event phase were the most important factors in how much PRIMATE players earn.
However, in order to participate in the play-to-earn system, players first need to purchase at least one Benji Bananas Membership Pass, which is an NFT. In other words, a small investment is required to start earning.
To learn more about this game, check out my Benji Bananas dissection.
Developer/Publisher: Uplandme Inc.
Genre: metaverse, simulation game
Our list of top play-to-earn blockchain games wouldn’t be complete without Upland.
Upland is a virtual property trading game that’s mapped to the real world. That means players can buy and trade properties from real addresses in cities like New York or Barcelona.
Virtual real estate is booming and more and more people are interested in buying land in the metaverse, which is why it’s not surprising this game got so popular. According to DappRadar, Upland had more than 150,000 active users in the past month.
Property ownership is at the core of the game and its play-to-earn model. This allows players to make property earnings in the form of UPX as well as sell their properties to make a profit, as each of them is an NFT.
Another way to earn in Upland is by completing collections. For example, a player needs to add three properties to the San Francisco collection to complete it and boost earnings.
What’s different about Upland is that players can’t swap UPX, the game’s token, for other currency. However, the game has a digital asset-to-USD program that enables its users to list a property in US dollars, instead of UPX. That means they receive USD if someone buys it.
Learn more about this game in my Upland analysis.
5. Axie Infinity
Developer/Publisher: Sky Mavis
Genre: Metaverse, card game
Platform: Android, iOS, Windows
Axie Infinity is fifth on our list of best play-to-earn blockchain games.
Its core gameplay concept is quite similar to Pokémon, but there’s a lot more to it. To understand what Axie Infinity is all about, you first need to understand who Axies are.
Put simply, Axies are cute cartoonish creatures that players can keep as digital pets and use to battle and breed with other Axies. The most important aspect of Axies is that they’re NFTs.
Each player controls a team that consists of three Axies – this is the minimum number of NFTs you need to play the game. By battling and playing the game, players earn tokens, which can be used to breed Axies.
The main ways players can make money by playing this game are breeding and selling Axies, harvesting SLP (Smooth Love Potions), and staking AXS tokens.
You’re probably wondering how much does it cost to start Axie Infinity? Well, that number is constantly changing. As of writing this article, it’s roughly $300, according to Loaded Gamer. That’s the current price estimate for a productive team of Axies.
According to its official website, over $3.6 billion was traded on the Axie Infinity marketplace, which is an insane number. Furthermore, the website claims the game has over 2.8 million daily active players. However, according to DappRadar, that number is significantly lower – less than 200k in October 2022.
Axie Infinity Economy
It’s also important to note that the economy in Axie Infinity is quite volatile and unpredictable. However, that’s the case with most play-to-earn game economies and is something players need to be ready for.
There was even a hack in March 2022 where assets worth $650 million were stolen from Axie Infinity. However, luckily, Sky Mavis managed to raise $150 million to pay back the players, which left most of them loyal to the game.
6. Trickshot Blitz
Genre: Sports game, multiplayer
Platform: Android, iOS
Trickshot Blitz is a part of the Joyride web3 ecosystem that set out to introduce blockchain gaming to mobile gamers. On this platform, you can find games by both internal developers as well as partner studios.
That makes it a great opportunity for developers who can publish and grow their web3 game through this platform. Furthermore, Joyride makes it easy for anyone to integrate all the play-to-earn elements like NFTs, tokens, wallets, etc.
Back to Trickshot Blitz – it’s a classic pool game where players can play against others and enter tournaments. However, unlike traditional pool games, players can earn RLY tokens.
Another Joyride’s mobile game that appears in the play-to-earn game top charts is Solitaire Blitz. It’s just like regular Solitaire, but with a twist – players can earn RLY by winning PvP matches and tournaments.
7. Farmer’s World
Developer/Publisher: G.JIT Japan
Genre: farming game, casual
Token: FWF, FWW, FWG
Farmer’s World is one of the first farming blockchain games on the market. So far, it has been quite successful – it had more than 120,000 active users in the past month. (DappRadar)
Essentially, this game is about mining for various resources – Food, Wood, and Gold. To do that, players need tools and different ones are used to mine different resources. For example, Axe, Saw, and Chainsaw are used to extract Wood.
These resources also correspond to 3 tokens, i.e., Food Coin, Wood Coin, and Gold Coin.
Naturally, more advanced tools give players a better yield. They can purchase these tools on the WAX marketplace or secondary marketplaces. The same goes for the game’s tokens.
Along with tools, players also need energy to extract resources, which can be replenished with Food Coin.
Wood and Gold Coin also have uses in the game. With the former, players can buy new tools while with the latter, players can repair tools.
Earning in Farmer’s World
There are a couple of main ways to earn in this game.
As I mentioned, players can mine various resources and they can sell Food, Wood, and Gold on marketplaces. Furthermore, players can raise animals and cultivate crops – these can also be sold.
7. Tiny World
Developer/Publisher: Tiny World
Genre: trading game
Blockchain: BNB Chain
Tiny World is not a game but rather a blockchain gaming ecosystem that currently consists of three games – Tiny Kingdoms, Tiny Farm, and Tiny Dungeons.
While these games are not as popular as others on this list, Tiny World’s daily active users have been growing. According to its website, Tiny World has just under 200,000 registered players and more than 20 million in NFT trading volume. DappRadar shows that Tiny Worlds had around 90,000 active wallets in the past 30 days.
To start playing, users need to purchase TINC, the platform’s token, and use it to buy a Tiny Hero, which is an NFT.
By playing the game and participating in various events, players can earn TINC rewards. Furthermore, players can stake Tiny Hero to the Boost Pool or NFT Farming Pool to mine TINC. This is another earning opportunity.
The Tiny World platform functions as a decentralized autonomous organization or DAO. The majority of the platform’s profits are directed there. Additionally, players have the option to lock up TINC to earn veTINC, which is the platform’s governance token. It’s used for voting in the DAO and gives users treasury share rights. Finally, these users also get Treasury Rewards.
To conclude, there are many different ways to earn on the Tiny Worlds platform – it’s no wonder it’s appearing in play-to-earn top charts.
Wrapping Up Top Play to Earn Games
This is the end of our list of top play-to-earn blockchain games. Which one did you find the most interesting? Have you tried any of these crypto games? Let me know in the comments!