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Blockchain game partners with Korean virtual idols in “sing-to-earn”, in-game tokens obtained to purchase clothing, and music composed can be turned into NFTs for reselling

William Wu thinks games will eventually be on the blockchain.

As the gaming industry continues to evolve, together with the rise of blockchain technology, blockchain games are one of the new models born out of this combination. Players can upgrade their characters to earn tokens or trade non-fungible tokens (NFTs) within the game for profit, changing the general concept of “playing games is only for leisure”. This kind of earning while playing (P2E) craze is on the rise. Recently, a blockchain gaming startup teamed up with a South Korean K-Pop artist agency to develop a blockchain game for the “sing-to-earn” model. The game is called Seoul Stars, and it is developed by a blockchain gaming startup, Catheon Gaming. The company was founded by an Australian Chinese William Wu Chenxi. In an exclusive interview with the newspaper, William pointed out that in addition to Seoul Stars, the company’s blockchain game portfolio also includes MMORPG – SolChicks.

Fans only have to purchase one of the Yuna NFTs to participate in Seoul Star’s rhythm and karaoke-style game.

Rhythm and karaoke-style game

Seoul Stars is a cooperation project between Catheon Gaming and South Korean K-Pop artist agency Humap Contents. The latter is the agency of a 3D virtual idol, Yuna. As long as fans buy Yuna’s NFT, they can participate in the rhythm and karaoke-style games in Seoul Stars. According to the Seoul Stars’ official website, players of rhythm games need to tap the beat accurately according to the rhythm of the song. In addition, you can create your own songs, and even convert the songs into NFTs for trading. Through singing the songs produced by Yuna or other K-Pop artists in the karaoke game, players can earn the in-game currency YunaCoin and governance token $SSTAR. The former can be used to purchase in-game virtual assets, such as stage decorations; the latter can be used to purchase new Yuna NFTs to obtain more attributes such as stage clothes and hair accessories.

In the company’s other blockchain game, SolChicks, players can breed and upgrade their chicks to battle with other players.

As for the company’s first game – SolChicks, the game is super popular on the Solana blockchain, with its official Twitter account having over 325,000 followers. Before starting the game, players must first hold SolChicks NFTs (the current floor price is 4.9 SOLs, worth about HK$2,040), and then breed the chickens into fighting chickens or even Imperial Chickens to battle with other players. Additionally, if the player owns two battle chickens, they can also “breed” a new chick NFT.

Catheon Gaming has raised HKD 430 million so far

Catheon Gaming was established in September last year. William said that the company’s headquarters is in the Cayman Islands, and it has teams in Hong Kong, Australia and other places. At present, there are 260 team members, and the cumulative financing amount has reached 55 million USD (about HKD 429 million). , “The team has been working remotely. Except for a small base in Shanghai, the company has no other physical office, and we are thinking about setting up one in Hong Kong in the future.”

Catheon Gaming partners with Korean pop agency to develop 3D virtual idol – Yuna.

William Wu expects that the gaming industry “will inevitably move towards the blockchain”, and believes that the development of blockchain games based on existing characters (IP) and works, or the transformation of existing games with a certain player base into blockchain games, are the directions for development. He added that the Hybrid Model approach is more ideal. Taking Seoul Stars as an example, people who do not hold Yuna NFTs can actually participate in the game. The difference is that players cannot use the attributes and skills that come with NFTs. “Games should be open to both normal and P2E players, if the players don’t want to buy NFTs, but still wants to play the game for experience, they shouldn’t be forced to do so.”

Can’t sustain players’ interests if the project is only for profit

Before founding Catheon Gaming, William Wu worked in McKinsey, a renowned management consulting firm, and Oaktree Capital, a global asset management company, and was familiar with different industry trends. “Blockchain gaming might be the hottest and most interesting trend I have seen, and this might be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

William Wu expects starting from next year, the industry will enter a phase of elimination.

William Wu: next year the industry will enter a phase of elimination

William Wu said that the gaming industry has a total value of hundreds of billions of dollars by itself, and the market is even larger than the movies and music industries, and blockchain game has further disrupted this market, “Imagine there are two games in front of you, one has earning potentials, and the other cannot make you a penny. I’m sure most of the people will definitely play the one that makes money.”

Once game developers only focus on money-making and neglected the experience of the game, players’ loyalty to the game will be limited.

However, earning while playing may be a double-edged sword. Once game developers only focus on money-making and neglected the experience of the game, players’ loyalty to the game will be limited. When the players’ income drops, they will be more prone to playing another game. William Wu expects that starting next year, there will be some blockchain gaming companies running into product or financial issues, which will eventually lead to them closing down, or being annexed by larger industry players. It is expected that the industry will enter a phase of elimination and only the strongest companies shall remain.

Original article in Chinese:

鏈遊夥韓虛擬偶像「唱住賺」 獲虛幣買服飾 作曲可轉NFT出售

遊戲產業持續發展,隨着區塊鏈技術興起,更衍生出區塊鏈遊戲(鏈遊)。玩家可打機升級賺取代幣,甚或買賣非同質化代幣(NFT)獲利,一改「打機無錢途」形象。這種邊玩邊賺(P2E)熱潮方興未艾,最近有鏈遊初創夥拍南韓K-Pop藝人代理公司,推出可供「邊唱歌邊賺錢」(Sing-to-earn)的區塊鏈遊戲。遊戲名為Seoul Stars,來自一間名為Catheon Gaming的鏈遊初創。該公司由澳洲籍華人吳晨曦(William Wu)創立,他接受本報專訪時指出,除了Seoul Stars,公司旗下鏈遊還包括大型多人在線角色扮演遊戲(MMORPG)SolChicks


Seoul Stars是Catheon Gaming跟南韓K-Pop藝人代理公司Humap Contents的合作項目,後者旗下有一位3D虛擬偶像Yuna,粉絲只要購買Yuna的NFT,便可參與Seoul Stars內的節奏及卡拉OK遊戲。根據Seoul Stars官網資料,節奏遊戲的玩家,要根據歌曲節奏準確地敲擊節拍。另外亦可自行創作歌曲,甚至把歌曲轉成NFT出售。卡拉OK遊戲方面,玩家需要唱出Yuna或其他K-Pop藝人的歌曲,賺取遊戲內貨幣YunaCoin及治理代幣$SSTAR。前者用於購買遊戲虛擬資產,例如舞台裝飾;後者可購買新的Yuna NFT,獲取更多舞台衣服、髮飾等屬性。


Catheon Gaming累吸4.3億

Catheon Gaming於去年9月成立,吳晨曦表示,公司於開曼群島註冊,惟在香港、澳洲等地均有團隊,目前團隊成員共有260人,累計融資額達5500萬美元(約4.29億港元),「團隊一直都採遙距辦公,除了上海有一小型據點,公司現無其他實體辦公室,未來可能在香港設立一個。」

吳晨曦預期,遊戲「將無可避免地走向區塊鏈化」,認為開發建基於現有角色(IP)及作品的鏈遊,或把已有一定玩家基礎的現有遊戲變成鏈遊,或是鏈遊的發展方向。他補充,混合模式(Hybrid Model)做法更理想,以Seoul Stars為例,沒持有Yuna NFT的人士,其實亦可參與遊戲,分別在於玩家無法使用NFT附帶的屬性及技能,「遊戲應該讓普通及P2E玩家一同參與,如果玩家不想購買NFT,那就不應強人所難。」


在創立Catheon Gaming之前,吳晨曦曾在老牌管理顧問公司麥肯錫,以及全球資產管理公司橡樹資本(Oaktree Capital)任職,熟悉不同行業趨勢,「鏈遊可能是自己見過最有趣且最火熱、可能是千載難逢的發展機會。」




Sources: Hong Kong Economic Journal ;

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