With the emergence of “cheap” blockchains such as Solana (March 2020) and Binance Smart Chain (August 2020), blockchain games have been picking up steam over the last couple of years. It’s through them that non-fungible tokens (NFTs) came about first (CryptoKitties in 2017), and they will likely remain one of the avenues through which NFTs could get a new lease on life once this year’s NFT mania comes to end.
When IDO Comes to Town
But before we put under the microscope the results of Dragon Kart’s IDO, let’s quickly recap how IDO came about to help the cryptocurrency investor and what the project, in this case, the Dragon Kart game, essentially is. These are the questions that any would-be investor has to ask himself before investing his money in a project.
IDO along with a wider known but highly discredited ICO is one of the common fundraising approaches aimed at pooling capital from retail investors. ICOs made a lot of noise in 2017, and while they produced quite a few overnight millionaires, many people actually lost their money in numerous scams going as ICOs.
The IDO fundraising model tries to work around some of the ICO flaws and issues by holding a token sale on a decentralized exchange aka DEX (hence the name) in a decentralized and fair manner. This approach to fundraising makes it more difficult for scammers to pull off an outright money grab, and thus it’s more suitable for the general public.
Further, IDOs grant investors immediate access to tokens on a DEX after the fundraising round is over – the tokens start trading on the exchange where the IDO itself took place. In this way, project developers no longer need to wait for approval from a centralized exchange to list the token (although it cuts both ways).
This is basically why so many startups and small projects like Dragon Kart are now taking the IDO path of raising funds instead of running an ICO.
And that leads us to our next question.
Dragon Kart Enters the Race
Dragon Kart is an upcoming skill-based racing game on the BSC blockchain that uses Unity 3D technology under the hood. The game is developed within the Free-to-Play and Play-to-Earn paradigms with the goal of lowering the entry barriers for participation in the game and enabling players to earn some money from it (hopefully).
New players in the game are given one character and equipped with one racing car (called Kart in the game), which allows them to participate in tournaments and earn experience points. These, in turn, unlock new characters and types of Kart, which are essentially free NFTs that cannot be traded for money but allow the players to level up. Give or take, that’s the Free-to-Play part of the game.
And here’s where the KART token comes into play. It’s both the governance and utility token that can be used for trading, staking, farming, and lending within the ecosystem. Players will be able to receive the tokens for winning races as well as completing daily tasks. The tokens can be spent on in-game assets that are tradable for real money. At its core, this is the Play-to-Earn part of Dragon Kart.
With that established, let’s now check how good the game turned out to be in terms of capital raised.
Dragon Kart Final Standings Stats
Unlike ICOs which are conducted by a project mostly on its own, IDOs are held on decentralized exchanges which allows the project to raise funding through multiple IDOs on different exchanges run at the same time.
Dragon Kart had fully taken advantage of this subtlety and run its IDOs, starting November 9 through November 11, on four different launchpads (LuaStarter, Chainboost, LaunchZone, and BSCStation). The project also had a single initial exchange offering (IEO) — a form of token sale held on a centralized exchange (which was Gate.io exchange in this case).
With a total supply of 100,000,000 and an initial circulating supply of 8,795,700 tokens, 4,437,500 tokens have been distributed in the public sale, raising $710,000 at $0.16 per token. Taking into consideration a private sale of 125,000 tokens at $0.08, Dragon Kart has been able to raise $1.1M of funding in total (for more detailed information see here).
From the investor’s perspective, the project has been performing quite well since the November token sale, which is further demonstrated by the market cap of the Kart token, currently standing at nearly $10M, and its price:
It should be noted, however, that there’s still no playable version of Dragon Kart publicly available (but you can watch a few YouTube demos here), so investor discretion is strongly recommended. As such, the game is poised to compete with a plethora of similar games on the BSC platform, already available or currently in the works.
To sum it up, it’s not just the players who will have to earn their living.
As NFTs are desperately seeking out use cases serving as investment options beyond what should be considered only a passing fad, it’s not in the least surprising to see NFT-based games acting lively and doing well recently, with projects such as Dragon Kart quickly receiving funding from the investing public.
Whether these ventures are going to live up to their promise is an open question, though.