The Metaverse has become a rather popular topic following the announcement by tech giant Facebook that it was rebranding to Meta in October 2021.
But what exactly is it, and how is it related to the blockchain?
Are some of the dominant blockchain projects, such as Cardano, considered Metaverses?
Read on to find out the answers to these and many more questions.
Is Cardano Metaverse?
No, Cardano is not a Metaverse. It is a third-generation blockchain network on top of which a Metaverse can be created.
There are a few features that make Cardano ideal for hosting a metaverse:
- Smart contract platform. Similar to Ethereum, Cardano offers a platform on which decentralized applications (dApps) can be hosted or run. Although it hasn’t rolled out the computation layer, which supports smart contracts, Cardano core developers are working towards that goal with the schedule to release this feature in 2022;
- Value transfer platform. The first layer of the Cardano blockchain is called the settlement layer, where value is transferred between two parties using ADA, the native Cardano ecosystem token. Value transfer is crucial within a metaverse as money is to the conventional world.
Even though the Cardano ecosystem is not yet ready to host fully-fledged metaverses, developers have already begun developing these virtual environments to be launched as soon as the infrastructure is in place.
The projects lining up to launch on Cardano include:
- Cornucopias; and
- Cardano Village.
Most recently, a new Cardano-based Metaverse project launched to huge fanfare called Pavia.io.
Pavia is aiming to compete against Decentraland and Sandbox, both based on the popular Ethereum network.
There are also other lesser-known metaverses, including Polka City, which is hosted on Polkadot, Kalao on Avalanche, and Star Atlas on Solana.
Most of these platforms are still under development which shows that even Cardano’s recently announced metaverse projects are keeping up with the market pace.
What is a Metaverse?
The metaverse is a new concept in which several emergent technologies are coming together to form a future internet space.
It is defined as an alternative digital reality where people play, work and socialize using virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR) technologies overlaid on top of the blockchain.
Clearly, the metaverse is not something that is already here, but there is an increasing interest in the space that is pulling in developers to create the infrastructure for this highly anticipated new digital world.
Facebook is already invested in this future to the extent of changing its name to Meta.
What is Cardano used for?
As a third-generation blockchain, Cardano aims to merge the best features of the first two generations represented by Bitcoin and Ethereum into a single package.
Bitcoin is a digital peer-to-peer value transfer protocol, while Ethereum is a smart contract platform. Check Can Cardano Overtake Ethereum?
Cardano has been designed to combine both of these functionalities in two layers called Cardano Settlement Layer (CSL) and Cardano Computation Layer (CCL).
The former is for value transfer, while the latter hosts decentralized apps (dApps).
What is Cardano built on?
The Cardano blockchain is built on a unique proof of stake (PoS) consensus mechanism called Ouroboros, which is based on peer-reviewed work and developed using the Haskell programming language.
The benefits of using Ouroboros include:
- Energy-efficient consensus mechanism leading to an eco-friendly blockchain;
- Passive income from staking ADA tokens;
- Enhances decentralization since staking has a lower entry barrier encouraging more people to stake and participate in network governance.
What is the relation between Cardano and Metaverse?
Cardano is a blockchain network, while the Metaverse is an alternative digital reality or space where people can work, play and socialize using next-gen techs such as AR and VR devices.
Cardano offers the infrastructure on which a metaverse can be created or hosted.
The blockchain is one of the essential technologies needed to enable a functional metaverse.
And Cardano is one of the few decentralized networks with the infrastructure to support such an application. Other competing networks include Ethereum, Solana, and Polkadot.
Learn more about how Solana and Metaverse fit together.
What is Pavia Cardano?
Pavia.io is a metaverse platform currently in development on the Cardano blockchain that will provide virtual real estate where users can design work, entertainment, and social spaces similar to Decentraland on Ethereum.
The application is named after the birthplace of Gerolamo Cardano, whose Cardano blockchain is named after.
Pavia was launched in September 2021 when more than 60,000 virtual plots were sold to the community.
The remaining 40,000 are scheduled to be sold in the 1st quarter of 2022. These plots can only be claimed by their owners with no other use at the moment, awaiting the activation of features to enable the plot owners to develop on them.
How to get started in the Cardano-Metaverse game?
Participating in any metaverse game is simple.
First, you have to learn the rules of the game to understand what you need to do to advance or make progress and what is restricted or prohibited to avoid penalties and disqualification.
Once you understand how to play the game, you will often need native tokens to enable you as the player to upgrade your characters, buy land or engage depending on the game.
You will also need to get a supported crypto wallet to hold your tokens, the ones you buy and those that you earn by engaging in incentivized activities within the metaverse.
Read more: Do You Need VR For Metaverse?
Cardano is a highly innovative blockchain network, and its activation of the smart contract feature brings it closer to being a worthy competitor to Ethereum.
One of the places that Ethereum leads is the deployment of infrastructure necessary to host decentralized apps such as metaverses.
However, recent events have shown that Cardano is on the verge of releasing this feature, the Cardano community will get the much-awaited metaverse dApps.