WAX Studios, a gaming and blockchain services studio formed by the WAX Blockchain's founders, recently witnessed the enormously successful beta release of Blockchain Brawlers, a play-to-earn (P2E), non-fungible token (NFT) game.
WAX's gaming studio is led by Michael Rubinelli, which recently released its first game, Blockchain Brawlers. Rubinelli, a 25-year veteran of the gaming industry and former employee of Disney, Playdom, Electronic Arts, and THQ, is credited with pioneering the free-to-play business model, which revolutionized gaming. Now, he sees the potential for P2E to do the same and desires to rejoin the charge in the web3 space. In this podcast interview, Jason and Jacob interview Michael to learn more about the games that the studio is developing in the web3 space, his perspective on the future of web3 games and how to onboard more gamers into the crypto gaming ecosystem.
WAX Studios is a game development studio focused on NFT games. The studio is a subsidiary of WAX, which was established in 2017.
The team at WAX Studios works to build blockchain-based platforms that allow players to interact with one another and create their own experiences using the WAX blockchain. These experiences can be anything from trading items between characters or battling for victory points, but most commonly will involve collecting resources then crafting them into something new or selling them for profit. The team at WAX Studios is building quality games that deliver the best experience for players and the community. They put a lot of work into all their development to ensure the game releases meet gamers’ expectations.
Michael Rubinelli said, "This is a great industry with great technology. And really the thing that always drives me is what am I building to validate players' use of their time? Right. Because a lot of things in our lives fight for our mindshare, such as my MP3 player, my streaming service, my significant other, my job, the community I'm in.
And so we take people's free time as their most valuable commodity that they have. And we try to validate that on a kind of literally on a moment-to-moment basis. And that's kind of what anchors a lot of the decisions that we make in building our game products".
Blockchain Brawlers is a battler that allows players to own NFT brawlers and earn BRWL tokens on the WAX blockchain network. Players can customize their brawlers with various items and use them to compete against other players. The game is playable in browsers and can be accessed via mobile and PC platforms; users can gain access to the game by connecting their WAX Cloud Wallets through the game's website.
Brawlers can be equipped with various items such as steel chairs and brass knuckles, which can be used to inflict additional damage on the opponent and earn more bonuses. NFTs that are not brawlers have limited durability that decreases with each use. When the NFT's durability reaches zero, they will be removed from the game.
Players can create their own brawlers and compete in matches; brawlers of all types, except legendary ones, can be created. Brawlers can compete in twenty-four matches in a single day, but they must rest after each match before returning to the ring. It takes sixty minutes to completely recharge. Brawlers lose health with every match; however, BRWL and in-game gold can be used to heal them. They can also be used to make better rings and other items.
Richard Garfield, a mathematics professor and game designer whose most successful game, Magic: The Gathering, is credited with popularizing the trading card game genre, has been instrumental in the design of Blockchain Brawlers. WAX Studios' distinct approach to crypto gaming combines P2E (play-to-earn) monetization with PvP (player-vs-player) gameplay, as well as the creativity and desirability of Garfield's game design genius.
Michael Rubinelli said: "The first thing, and the thing that I think that we're most excited about with Blockchain Brawlers, is a real kind of foundational principle or philosophy that we have: we want to build great games. We've taken our Brawler IP, which people love the characters and the backstory, and we've combined these things, and this is a real good use of people's time and everything that they do in that game. Everything that they earn, they craft, they trade, they buy, they sell. They do so because they own it, and we think that kind of combination of things is super powerful.”
The game also supports cross-platform play. Binance's newly rebranded BNB chain is the first to be linked with WAX via an NFT bridge, making Blockchain Brawlers the first game to enable interoperability between the two chains.
WAX (Worldwide Asset eXchange) is an eco-friendly blockchain designed for e-Commerce via dApps (decentralized applications), NFTs, gaming, virtual worlds, and one-of-a-kind collectibles. Creators and brands can easily build, launch, and distribute NFTs to a global user base on the WAX blockchain.
WAX is quickly becoming a powerhouse in the play-to-earn and non-fungible token (NFT) gaming industries thanks to its carbon-neutral blockchain stance. The WAX blockchain currently has over 12,000,000 active user accounts and six blockchain games ranked among the top 25 by users, including the top three by daily active players. According to Blocktivity, WAX has the most user activity of any blockchain, with nearly 20 million daily operations.
Michael Rubinelli said: "WAX is the best blockchain in the world bar none for transacting, right? It's 8,000 transactions a second. There's no gas pricing. That's why WAX Cloud Wallet has 13.2 million users because of ease of use and ease of adoption.”
WAX has had great success integrating major brands into web3. WAX collaborated with Sony Pictures and AMC Theatres in December to distribute official Spider-Man: No Way Home NFTs. Street Fighter, NASCAR, Atari, Funko, Hot Wheels, and Power Rangers are among the other global brands that have joined the WAX blockchain. WAX performed the largest NFT drop in history at the start of 2022, one NFT to all of the first 10 million WAX accounts registered.
The future of gaming is a frictionless, rewarding experience. Web3 starts with onboarding and ends with blockchain technology. It’s the next step for gamers to take in our digital world, and it will be a big one. We can all see that with the web3 games being created on the WAX platforms.
Michael Rubinelli says, "I think this whole notion of, you know, kind of ease of use and utility and interface, just, you know, people don't really care what's going on behind the curtain. If you can make this adoption into web3 frictionless and simple and straightforward, Why wouldn't people want to do this? Of course they would. The reason why people don't is the friction is too high, because they get lost in the deFi of it all.”
Wax Studios has lofty goals for Blockchain Brawlers, including increasing participation by attracting mainstream gamers to its web3 games. The team claims that it wants as many people as possible to compete in order to create excitement and a variety of opponents. There are also plans to create secondary market opportunities for crafted items, which are generally lacking in other P2E games.
The future of NFTs is bright, as mentioned by Michael at the end of the podcast. As he said, “WAX Studios is going to be around for a long time. We're not going away without a fight and we are keen on developing games that lead the trend in the web3 space."
The future of blockchain gaming is also looking promising with Michael saying that, "The real value in blockchain technology lies in being able to create these decentralized applications or DApps on top of it." He went on to say that WAX Studios has been working with some big names both within and outside the web3 space to develop new interesting games!
Wax blockchain already has 24 game titles on their website with the headline, "Welcome to the most proven web3 ecosystem for gaming and NFTs," as well as some statistics to back it up, such as 500k daily visitors, 13 million wallets created, and 30k+ dapps.
Wax Studios promises unprecedented play-to-earn mechanics in its game, challenging players to make key strategic decisions on an hourly, daily, and weekly basis. They are surely taking the web3 space by storm and we wish them success in whatever they are building in the space
We hope you listen to the full episode of the podcast to hear more interesting gems from Michael and what his team is building at WAX Studio. Thanks for your time and see you next week on the next episode of The NFT Gaming Pdcast.
HOST / PODCAST BIO
The NFT Gaming Podcast features developers building the next generation of gaming: play-to-earn NFT games. In this podcast, NFT game founders Jason and Jacob interview key contributors to the NFT gaming movement across a multitude of blockchains. Our goal is to help bring clarity to the topic of NFT gaming, build credibility for new and existing projects, and help gamers across different blockchains find new NFT games to play. Season 2 of the show is proudly sponsored by Revelar. Revelar is the NFT Game Engine, built on Cardano.
Michael Rubinelli, Chief Gaming Officer at WAX Studios, is a technology & gaming leader with 15+ years of progressive experience in executive leadership, product development, and continual revenue growth and is renowned for his success at top corporations (including Disney, THQ, Electronic Arts). Michael has now turned his attention to Play-to-Earn games and spends most of his time expanding the Gaming Division of WAX Blockchain.