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The Play & Own (P&O) revolution isn’t just on the horizon - it’s already here. With it comes a whole new host of ways for you to build, monetize, and grow your games. And the value isn’t restricted to just developers, players are enjoying the benefits of this new model too

Having this much to offer is making it clear that P&O is the next evolution in free to play games. 

To get the most out of it, it’s vital that you choose the right solution. So to help you navigate this new frontier, here’s a list of 4 features that you should look out for in your solution.

1. Keep flexibility in mind  

With a huge variety of infrastructure options, both decentralized and centralized, it’s no surprise that the first question developers ask is which one to build their game on. It’s a question that needs careful consideration as the risks of picking the wrong infrastructure are significant - tech stability, where the market will lean, and lack of certainty when it comes to the future cost of an infrastructure are just a few to consider. Plus, there’s the burden you put on players who are already playing a game on another infrastructure - requiring them to create new wallets and accounts if they want to play yours.

"The risks of picking the wrong infrastructure are significant"

For these reasons, the name of the game is flexibility - you need a solution that will enable you to support multiple infrastructures simultaneously, so you’re never confined to a single one. The solution should allow you to generate game assets on multiple infrastructures and support your assets across marketplaces and users’ wallets. Beyond that, a multi-infrastructure solution has the advantage of reducing unnecessary dependency on one infrastructure. 

2. Interoperability is a requirement

P&O represents a huge shift in value for players through player ownership and interoperability. Interoperability is the ability to use assets on various games or platforms - and one of the best ways to motivate peer-to-peer trading. A P&O solution without interoperability lacks one of its most important features and cuts you off from opportunities to collaborate and grow, since the more utility game assets have, the more valuable they become. 

"This gives you the ability to target users who may be playing games similar to yours, while also strengthening the greater ecosystem"

The solutions that make it easiest to collaborate are the ones with open ecosystems. It’s the open ecosystem that enables you to select assets from other games that you’d like to support, and offer experiences to users who have specific assets in their wallets. Ultimately, this gives you the ability to target users who may be playing games similar to yours, while also strengthening the greater ecosystem. 

Open ecosystems are also important for allowing users to collect assets from multiple infrastructures, allowing you to support all relevant assets in one ecosystem.

3. Mobile is where you’ll scale

To grow your game, you need casual gamers who’ll interact with your game for a couple of hours each day. Those users are on mobile, and mobile is where you'll scale your game.

It’s critical that the solution you choose is built for mobile and enables you to empower player ownership within the mobile ecosystem. This means you need a solution with a payment system and infrastructure that is compliant with mainstream app storefront standards.

4. Always put the end user first

For all the value that P&O offers, its significant complexity can be a turn-off for most users, ultimately resulting in churn. For this reason, finding a solution that puts the end-user first is essential.

"Immersion is an important way to get users to start and stay playing your P&O-enabled game"

A solution that does this should be easy to use and frictionless, leveraging a user-journey that players are already familiar with. A telltale sign is if the experience of your app is gamified and customized - immersion is an important way to get users to start and stay playing your P&O-enabled game as it introduces and keeps them in your game’s world. 

By ensuring your solution incorporates these features, you can give your game the best possible foundation for monetizing, growing, and retaining users - from how it can be accessed to who can do so, and the experience of doing it.

Astra from Unity is an end-to-end solution for P&O that allows you to mint, distribute, manage your game's assets - created with your game’s success and users’ experience in mind. Want to find out more? Contact us.

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