What is the cutest creature in the world? Undoubtedly, it's the cat!
Cats have successfully domesticated humans and have established an undeniable presence in our world. In 2015, Japan introduced the concept of "cat economics," revealing that cats are a rare "hard currency" that can weather economic cycles. Regardless of the industry or the current economic situation, humans' enthusiasm for cats and related products remains consistently high. Businesses that effectively incorporate the cat element are bound to attract attention and generate economic value.
"Cat economics" has also found its way into the world of Web3. Take CryptoKitties as an example. Launched in 2017, CryptoKitties is the pioneer of blockchain games. It initially released 50,000 first-generation CryptoKitties NFTs. The gameplay revolves around users buying, breeding, selling, and collecting virtual cats. Upon its release, the Ethereum network experienced congestion for several days. A single cat's highest transaction price reached 600 ETH, and the game contributed to the creation of the ERC-721 NFT general standard.
Though CryptoKitties currently boasts nearly 120,000 holders, it has faded from the blockchain gaming scene. The game resembles a money-making scheme disguised as a game, with limited and repetitive gameplay. When players can only buy, sell, speculate, and arbitrage in the game, a "bubble" is bound to emerge. Once the bubble bursts, players will quickly abandon the game without looking back.
Leveraging the "cat economy" to attract users is just the first step. To retain users, it's essential to give "cats" real value. A virtual cat, lacking in aesthetics and generated by a simple algorithm, holds no inherent value. It's the integration of online and offline application scenarios that provides it with worth. Today, the virtual pet cat has evolved into a more sophisticated level of gameplay: the animal-themed metaverse, The Animal Age.
The Animal Age: An Innovative Animal Metaverse Experience
The Animal Age is an animal metaverse that offers much more than the basic functions of virtual cat rearing, breeding, and P2E. It introduces innovative gameplay elements such as on-chain battles, social interaction, and blind unboxing. Furthermore, the project collaborates with offline physical animal organizations and merchants to bridge the gap between Web2 and Web3 pet economies. In the future, The Animal Age plans to incorporate decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) governance, token economy, and IP/brand alliances to create a comprehensive animal metaverse.
The foundation for The Animal Age lies in Taiwan's largest cat charity rescue organization, CrazyCat club. Established in 1999, the club has amassed over one million community members and has developed various consumption scenarios, including offline pet hospitals, pet supply stores, and pet farms. In 2022, the club decided to expand its reach from Web2 to Web3, enabling more people to experience the joy of raising cats on the blockchain.
At present, The Animal Age has secured investment from renowned international cryptocurrency venture capital fund Spark Capital Digital and Israeli venture capital and consulting firm Vega Ventures.
The Animal Age Metaverse: Bridging the Online and Offline Economies
The Animal Age metaverse project revolves around a cat theme, utilizing DeFi, NFTs, and blockchain games as entry points while integrating gaming, social networking, and various entertainment activities. The project relies on offline communities and builds decentralized autonomous communities to seamlessly connect online and offline economies.
- Animal-Themed NFTs
Traditional game operators hold ownership of game assets, allowing them to change, transfer, or even clear user data at will, leaving users in a passive position. NFT games, however, return asset ownership to the players. The Animal Age enables users to genuinely own a virtual pet cat.
According to official news, The Animal Age is set to launch its first official NFT – The Kittens. The first batch of Kittens NFTs includes 666 kittens, and users can adopt them for free on zkSync Era.
The project also plans to collaborate with IP and brands to release more animal-themed NFTs in the future.
- Raise to Earn
Using NFT virtual cats as a starting point, The Animal Age aims to create a fun and engaging social metaverse. In this immersive animal kingdom, users can breed, treasure hunt, battle, host parties, and socialize, significantly enhancing the gaming experience.
Similar to the real world, players in the cat metaverse must spend time feeding and caring for their virtual cats. The distinction lies in the ability to earn income from cat rearing. Users can obtain "feed" for their cats by completing in-game tasks and activities, such as signing in on social media, participating in daily events, winning prizes, and inviting new members. Notably, The Animal Age will collaborate with pet adoption agencies so that each successfully raised pet NFT in the metaverse corresponds to the adoption of a real-world cat.
In The Animal Age's system, each virtual cat progresses through four growth stages, unlocking new features and interactive experiences:
- Newborn Kitten: Users must feed the kitten and help it thrive, building a close bond and nurturing environment for growth.
- 3 months: As the kitten becomes more lively and active, users can use in-game items to participate in various activities, supporting its growth and unlocking new appearances.
- 6 months: The game's social system unlocks, allowing users to facilitate social interactions between their kittens and those of other players, increasing intimacy. The Animal Age Metaverse's social system will be tied to the Decentralized Identifier (DID) system to ensure each user has a unique on-chain identity.
- Adult kittens: The breeding and battle systems unlock when kittens reach adulthood. Adult cats can breed higher-level newborns with unique attributes and appearances when their intimacy reaches a certain level. The Animal Age advocates adoption over purchasing, so users can only adopt newly bred kittens or bid on those raised by other players. When an adult cat is auctioned off, the owner's income is reduced, as the metaverse discourages cat abandonment.
- Online and Offline Communities
To achieve decentralized governance, The Animal Age will introduce its platform token, $TAA, and establish a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) based on the token. Users holding NFTs and tokens will automatically join the DAO, enabling them to participate in the project's governance and decision-making processes. Profits generated within the metaverse will be distributed as determined by the DAO community members.
The integration of Web2 and Web3 sets The Animal Age apart from other blockchain projects. The project plans to donate a portion of the metaverse-generated income to animal charities, supporting real-world animals in need. Additionally, the project intends to open offline NFT stores where NFT holders can enjoy exclusive benefits on goods and services. Leveraging its association with the million-member-strong cat club, The Animal Age's offline stores, pet hospitals, animal farms, and other commercial entities will offer support for Web2 products. By connecting the Web2 and Web3 economies, the project aims to build a sustainable gaming ecosystem.
With its focus on constructing a metaverse, integrating the real economy, collaborating with IPs, and offering innovative gameplay, The Animal Age is revolutionizing the NFT gaming landscape. It serves as a pioneering project for NFT games seeking to move beyond hype and speculation. Traditional metrics like transaction volume and return on investment no longer suffice, as the project bestows NFTs with tangible social and financial value. By combining the metaverse with animal charity and gamification, The Animal Age directs users' attention towards real-world animal welfare while they enjoy the entertainment of animal rearing. This inventive approach enhances the social value of the metaverse and invites broader participation in the field.