Axie Infinity, one of the most successful blockchain play-to-earn offerings from developer Sky Mavis, has all but burned itself out. One of the most significant factors to Axie’s massive failure is the $620M hack it suffered in early 2022.
While the FBI investigated the significant theft, players were left scrambling to find their footing. The Axie Infinity game had offered a road to riches and was instead burning to the ground. Eventually, the FBI did find a culprit for the incredibly costly hack.
“FBI Statement on Attribution of Malicious Cyber Activity posed by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea – The FBI continues to combat malicious cyber activity, including the threat posed by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to the U.S. and our private sector partners. Through our investigation, we were able to confirm Lazarus Group and APT38, cyber actors associated with the DPRK, are responsible for the theft of $620 million in Ethereum reported on March 29. The FBI, in coordination with Treasury and other U.S. government partners, will continue to expose and combat the DPRK’s use of illicit activities – including cybercrime and cryptocurrency theft – to generate revenue for the regime.”
Sky Mavis CEO Jeffrey Zirlin is sympathetic to the players who lost large sums of money. Unfortunately, their lives will likely never be the same after investing in Axie Infinity. Axie’s publisher started raising funds to help players who the massive downfall of the game had negatively impacted after the huge hack from North Korea.
The fund, which has raised 150 million dollars, will allow players to withdraw their funds, which had been unattainable since the hack. Binance led the way with contributions from companies like Dialectic, Paradigm, Animoca Brands, Accel, and blue-chip VC firm a16z, which previously invested in Axie.
“The cash infusion will be used to make players whole,” said Kalie Moore, a spokesperson for Sky Mavis. About $400 million was hacked from players, while the remaining $220 came from Axie’s Treasury.
That same Treasury will stay at a loss while game developers work with law enforcement and see to the needs of players. Moore went on to add, “If in two years the money hasn’t been recovered, the company’s DAO (decentralized autonomous organization) will vote on the next steps for the Treasury.”
Given the last valuation for Axie Infinity being somewhere in the ballpark of $3 billion, there’s hope that past players will be able to recoup the entirety of their losses. Still, Jeffrey Zerlin is hoping players will focus on a new shift in the game rather than the massive failure Axie suffered.
He says, “Sometimes the game has to flush out the people who are just in it for the money.” And while Zirlin sees the massive crypto hack as the game’s economy ‘self-correcting,’ there’s no guarantee Axie will have much of a player community when the dust settles.
Axie Players 2022
Axie continues to deal with the ramifications of the crypto hack fallout. Still, there’s hope that the game will be able to recover the lost revenue and continue to build a robust player community.
Toward that end, Axie offers a creators program to educate players who wish to learn more about creating on Axie a chance to do just that. 200 lucky creatives will be allowed to participate in this first round of programs to dive into the details of how Axie works and what makes it one of the best crypto-backed games
If you’d like to participate, you’re encouraged to:
- Join the Axie Infinity Discord
- Introduce yourself on the creator’s program chat
- Engage with Creator Program staff
The rewards system will become more complex as Axie collects valuable information from community users and creators. To start with, however, they’ll use easily accessible rewards like access to news, initiatives and patches, key moments, and events.
You’ll also have access to support through dedicated points of contact, social media engagement, and monetary grants.
As the participants provide more and more feedback, Axie will change and increase its rewards program to continue encouraging creative progress from its community of users.
To Axie or Not
Anytime you deal with a platform that bases its payments or payouts solely on crypto, you must be aware of the risks. Like investing in the stock market or some other intangible resource, the risks can far outweigh the rewards, and both must be considered. If there’s no solid financial backup, the risk is much higher.
And, as in Axie’s case, there’s no guarantee they’ll ever be able to recoup the finances lost in the North Korean hack. Despite their fundraising efforts, the game will suffer for years trying to rebuild the reputation that came so quickly at the start.
So, is Axie still a fun, creative outlet for PC gamers? Yes. Is it as reliable as it might have first seemed? Maybe not, but at least players will go into that platform with their eyes wide open. No more road to riches, but perhaps now players can simply enjoy the game.
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This article was produced by Wealth of Geeks.
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