A new NFT and metaverse project is being built on the Ethereum blockchain — with a cutting-edge difference that could set it apart from rivals.
Astral Pioneers says it will enable players to own their own land, mine it for resources, and start building across 30 different planets.
But it's the in-game governance mechanism that sets this project apart, as it's going to use soulbound tokens to represent and ensure citizenship.
SBTs are a new approach to cryptoassets that has been championed by Vitalik Buterin, the co-founder of Ethereum. He was inspired by a feature found in World of Warcraft — and those with long memories will remember that this game was a crucial reason why he wanted to establish this blockchain in the first place.
Soulbound items cannot be transferred or sold to others — and Buterin's argument right now is this: This functionality currently can't be achieved through the ERC-721 standard. In a blog post published in January, he wrote: "If someone shows you that they have an NFT that is obtainable by doing X, you can't tell whether they did X themselves or whether they just paid someone else to do X."
Astral Pioneers says the arrival of SBTs won't affect a player's ability to lend tokens or lease their land to others — and the game will boast DeFi functionality to make this happen.
And in championing what makes their metaverse so special, this project claims it is the first virtual world to offer citizenship to users, all while offering resources that build intrinsic value. Becoming a citizen of AP means a user can vote on legislation, delegate their votes to others they trust, propose laws, and even become a senator who has a front-row seat in making things happen.
Delving into the tokenomics
Each of the 30 original planets consists of 3,000 states — meaning a total of 90,000 Astral Pioneers states are up for grabs. Owning one AP NFT — there are 9,990 alien avatars available in total — entitles the collector to purchase two of these states.
Within each of these states, there are 15 mineable resources, in addition to "secret magic resources" that will be discovered during gameplay. They can be broken down into three categories too — gemstones, precious and semi-precious metals, alongside industrial materials. What's more, the total amount of the resources that can be mined each year is capped — ranging from diamonds, emeralds and rubys, to lumber, steel and marble, as well as gold, silver and nickel.
In the future, those who own AP states will also have the opportunity to purchase their very own planet in one of three sizes: Small, medium or large.
Citizenship, without compromising anonymity
While citizenship may be an alluring feature for some in the metaverse, anonymity remains a crucial principle in the crypto world. For this reason, Astral Pioneers says anonymous users are permitted within the game — and while they won't have a user handle, they'll be referred to as "spirits" who appear as a translucent mist. For those less concerned about identity, avatars will be available for a fee — alongside citizenship, where a Know Your Customer check verifies that they're a real human being.
Looking ahead, Astral Pioneers plans to develop and release a role-playing game on its platform — and completing quests and adventures will enable players to gain access to secret planets. The project also has ambitions to become the premier virtual concert venue for artists by enabling companies and organizations to host their own events — and this will be coupled with "regular, free public concerts" for everyone.
Development is now underway as AP vies to bring a futuristic concept for tokens to the masses.
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