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How NFT is revolutionizing gaming in the UAE and beyond

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The “play-to-earn” movement or NFT gaming is enjoying a massive growth over the past year. NFTs (non-fungible tokens) are assets that live on the blockchain network. In game, players collect rewards in the form of NFTs (non-fungible tokens) and later convert them to real cash.

One of the play-to-earn games dominating the scene right now is Axie Infinity, a Pokemon style game created by Vietnamese developer Sky Mavis. It has over 350,000 daily active users and over $170 million in trading volume. The blockchain based game allows players to collect, breed, raise, battle and trade token-based creatures known as “axies,” which are digitized as their own NFTs.

To play Axie Infinity, you will have to buy a team that consists of three axies. At the time of writing, the floor price of each adult axie is around 0.17 ETH each (BHD136). 

One of the main reasons why Axie Infinity has reached so much popularity is due to its “Scholarship Program” which allows axie holders to farm out their pets to “scholars” through different profit-sharing methods. Scholarship programs empower people who do not have enough access and capital to enter the game, to still play and earn. At the time of writing, scholars can earn as much as 2,000-3,000 SLP (BHD240-370) in a month.

We had the chance to talk to Ashley Cadabuna, Co-Founder of Supremo – Axie Revolution, a UAE and Philippine based organization with a goal to boost people’s lives through Axie Infinity. Their organization is currently helping over 140 scholars, with a percentage coming from the region.

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Can you tell us a bit about yourself? What sparked your interest in trying out NFT games?

My Name is Ashley and I’m currently residing in the UAE. We discovered Axie Infinity in November 2020. Initially, we looked at it as a good side hustle because you just need to spend 1-2 hours playing to earn money. Back then, you could not earn as much as you can now. But it was still a hefty amount for a side hustle. 

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Axie Infinity, or NFT games in general, give you total ownership of your assets – this was what piqued my curiosity then. In other games where you pay money to play, you do not earn as much, or you do not earn AT ALL.

Moreover, play-to-earn games were one of my childhood dreams! Imagine earning real money while playing. Through NFT games, you don’t need to be a streamer, or a pro e-sports player to earn while playing. 

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Do you think NFT games like Axie Infinity are here to stay?

I don’t just think they are here to stay. I think they will revolutionize play-to-earn games and societal norms in general.

Take Axie Infinity for example, the genius brains behind this game (Sky Mavis) created an internal economics within the game, which is why it’s a big hit right now. Because of this, people are earning as much as they are right now.

It’s also teaching people the value of money in a sense that we don’t need to be slaves of society in order to make a living. Through NFT games like Axie Infinity, people can earn an office manager’s salary while only playing a game for two hours a day and spending the rest of their time with their family.

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Can you tell us more about your vision in creating Supremo – Axie Revolution?

We started Supremo – Axie Revolution with only one goal in mind: we wanted to be free and help others escape the shackles of financial constraints and finally be financially free.

You have generated quite some hype on social media for using the game to help individuals in several parts of the world. How many scholars do you currently have? Are you planning to expand your scholarship program? 

Yes. Supremo – Axie Revolution has two factions, “Magdalo” and “Magdiwang”. We currently have around 101 scholars in Magdalo and around 40 scholars in Magdiwang. This was achieved in only two months and we will not stop here. Our target is as much as 500 total scholars by the end of this year.

Are there any exciting news that you would like to share to our readers?

We will be hosting a sort of a community outreach program in our hometown this December. It’s a way of giving back to the community and encouraging them to try this game. We will of course focus on less-fortunate (for lack of a better term) people in our provinces.  

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Also, look out for our upcoming Axie e-sports teams!!!

Long-term; crypto or fiat as the predominant currency?

I was a crypto trader before I delved into NFT gaming so even before then, I believed that crypto will outlive fiat and will become our predominant currencies. I don’t know when, but it will happen. Living in a decentralized world is inevitable.

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