What distinguishes a metaverse from an online video game?

What distinguishes a metaverse from an online video game

The metaverse would be the future of the Internet, nothing less. And Facebook and Microsoft are investing huge amounts in this technology that is destined to disrupt our daily lives. But what makes a metaverse different from an online multi-user video game?

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For Mark Zuckerberg, the metaverse (the word is sometimes written “metaverse”) represents the future ofInternet, but above all our social relations on a very large scale. And besides, he believes in it so strongly that he renamed Facebook named Meta and plans to invest $ 50 billion in this new model. He even plans to recruit 10,000 engineers in Europe alone. The key: virtual spaces in which we can relate to others, as in real life.

Meta-Facebook is not the only one to want to invest in this new Grail. Epic Games, the creator of Fortnite, proud of its 350 million users, has already started to transform into a metaverse. And the company Microsoft would like to remind you that she is working on Mesh, an extension of Teams (collaborative communication), a application professional close to a metaverse. Apple and Sony are not left out.

It is also true that a Bloomberg Intelligence report estimates that this market could represent 2.500 billion dollars by 2030.

Online video games have paved the way

Without a doubt, the so-called online video games ” massively multiplayer ” such as World of warcraft or what are called “persistent worlds” such as EVE Online have paved the land of the metavers. The same could be said of social relations games such as The sims which was also entitled to an online version.

In addition, several experiments close to the metaverse have already taken place. In 1997, Canal + had launched The Second World, an experience of parallel life in a Paris reconstituted in computer-generated images. And from 2003, the video game Second life had allowed some to experience social interactions in a finely crafted world. However, if such adventures did not take off particularly, it is partly because the adequate technology and also the bandwidth were not there.

Common points between video games and metaverse

In fact, there are many commonalities between Internet video games and the metaverse to come.

  • Avatars, or virtual characters that we embody. In an online video game, we can assume the role of a magician, a knight, a trader … The metaverse will allow such experiences of doubling oneself, in our own form or in that of a character.
  • Objects or items of particular value that we are ready to acquire. In an online game, it can be a particular piece of armor or a horse. In a metaverse, it could be a gift like being able to fly or a work of art. NFT that we have acquired and that we exhibit at home.
  • Complete cities whether real (we could visit New York virtually before going there for good) or imaginary, with places of recreation, competitions, etc.
  • Homes that you can decorate as you wish, in which to “receive” friends;
  • Persistence. We can leave this world anytime. When you come back to it, it has evolved in parallel.

Where then is the difference? The first is that a metaverse will not have, a priori, no limitation on the number of participants, which in itself represents a gigantic technological challenge – and gives a better understanding of the extent of Meta-Facebook’s investments in matter.

A panorama of activities much wider than in a video game

However, a metaverse differs from a video game in that it incorporates a lot of activities that are not necessarily fun:

  • type working meetings Zoom ;
  • ability to attend events such as concerts (as experienced by Fortnite) without having to travel;
  • meetings of various types for the simple relational purpose;
  • distance education, etc.

Work in the metaverse

For many professions, the metaverse will represent huge opportunities to work from home. We can already play some games called ” play to earn (Play to win) in order to win certain items, creatures or skills that can be cashed out to other players. This is already the case with Axie Infinity whose practice is for many inhabitants of the Philippines the main livelihood. This concept is set to develop very strongly in the metavers. And among the other lucrative activities that can be foreseen are:

  • fashion designer for avatars;
  • virtual house architect;
  • decorator;
  • creators of NFTs, unique works of art that can be exhibited at home;
  • creator of games or applications;
  • online trainer.

By force of circumstances, payments within metaverses will be made by means of cryptocurrency.

What equipment for the metaverse?

It remains to be defined what will be the adequate equipment for daily use in such a world. If the players are willing to don virtual reality headsets such as those ofOculus – a company bought by Facebook – it seems unlikely that the general public could consent to use such accessories. Instant virtual reality glasses seem more feasible.

Accessory Kinect launched by Microsoft for its Xbox has shown that it is possible to use your hands as game controllers. It is therefore likely that the cameras included in the computers and smartphones and other accessories of tomorrow will be able to interpret the movements body and facial expressions, transpose them to his avatar, but also react accordingly. Because the keyword of the metaverse will undoubtedly be: immersion!

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