Back to main

6 Best GameFi Crypto Projects in 2024

Table of Contents

GameFi cryptocurrency projects combine two popular concepts: gaming and decentralized finance (DeFi). In most cases, they allow players to earn crypto rewards simply by completing in-game tasks and missions. This incentive mechanism is almost entirely exclusive to blockchain gaming and is referred to as Play-to-Earn (P2E).

The GameFi sector exploded in popularity in 2021 and 2022 but has since seen quite a significant decline, at least in terms of the prices of native tokens belonging to GameFi projects. However, that doesn’t mean that the sector is dead – far from it. There are several multi-billion projects left in the space, and more importantly, the number of players continues to grow.

In this article, we will examine the best and biggest GameFI crypto projects currently in the market and look into their main features and characteristics.

List of the best GameFI crypto coins and tokens in 2024:

  1. GALA – Leading GameFi crypto ecosystem
  2. The Sandbox – GameFi project with user-created content at the forefront
  3. Axie Infinity – PvP combat with real money rewards
  4. Pikamoon – MOBA-based play-to-earn mobile game
  5. Iluvium – RPG crypto gaming project with its own exchange
  6. Yield Guild Games – Fostering connections between Web3 players

The 6 best GameFi crypto projects in 2024

In the following sections, you will find descriptions of the most popular GameFi projects currently in the market. Please keep in mind that the following ranking represents our subjective opinion and doesn’t necessarily mean that one project is objectively better than the other.

1. GALA – Leading GameFi crypto ecosystem

Gala Games (GALA), established in 2019 by Eric Schiermeyer and Michael McCarthy, is an innovative platform at the intersection of gaming and blockchain technology. The platform uses its native cryptocurrency, GALA, for in-game transactions and rewarding players. It stands out with a player-driven economy where players genuinely own in-game assets as non-fungible tokens (NFTs), a stark contrast to traditional gaming models.

The ecosystem is supported by various types of nodes: Founder Nodes, Game Nodes, Jukebox Nodes, and REP Nodes, each playing a specific role in maintaining and securing the network. Node operators are rewarded with GALA tokens and exclusive NFTs. Gala Games' array of blockchain-based games includes "Town Star," a competitive town-building game; "Mirandus," an immersive fantasy RPG; and "Spider Tanks," a PvP shooter. Each game integrates NFT elements, offering a unique gameplay experience.

Gala Games encourages independent game development by allowing developers to use its blockchain infrastructure to create and launch new games. This approach promotes diversity and innovation in the gaming sector, and promotes the creation of new play-to-earn crypto games. The platform is characterized by strong community governance, giving players and node operators significant input in its development and decision-making processes. As a result, Gala Games offers a more engaging and immersive gaming experience, combining entertainment with digital asset ownership and community involvement​.

2. The Sandbox – GameFi project with user-created content at the forefront

The Sandbox (SAND) is a dynamic virtual world allowing users to build, create, and monetize their gaming experiences on the Ethereum blockchain. At its core, it uses the SAND token, an ERC-20 utility token essential for various platform interactions, including gameplay, avatar customization, LAND purchases, and asset trades. Users can also stake SAND for rewards and participate in platform governance through a Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO) structure.

Key components of The Sandbox include:

  • VoxEdit: A user-friendly tool for creating voxel-based NFTs. Users can design a range of items like avatars, equipment, and environmental assets. These can be traded as NFTs on The Sandbox Marketplace.
  • Game Maker: Enables users to build and test 3D games within the Sandbox metaverse, without needing coding skills. It allows for the incorporation of NFTs created with VoxEdit.
  • The Sandbox Marketplace: An NFT marketplace where users trade in-game assets with SAND tokens. Assets created in VoxEdit can be sold here.
  • LAND: Digital real estate on The Sandbox platform, represented as unique ERC-721 tokens. Users can build games using ASSETS on their LAND and monetize their creations.
  • ASSETS: User-generated NFTs that can be environmental assets or attached to avatars, enriching the gaming experiences.

The platform, launched by Pixowl and now supported by Animoca Brands, has attracted investments and partnerships from notable names like Atari. The Sandbox focuses on user-generated content, enabling a vast range of creative possibilities, from game development to the creation of entire virtual worlds, making it one of the top metaverse projects in the market. The metaverse is increasingly appealing for businesses and individuals to establish a virtual presence, driving its growth and popularity in the blockchain and gaming communities.

3. Axie Infinity – PvP combat with real money rewards

Axie Infinity (AXS) is a P2E blockchain-based game that allows players to buy, breed, and battle fantasy creatures called Axies, represented as NFTs. Created by the indie studio Sky Mavis, Axie Infinity is inspired by Nintendo's Pokemon series and is notable for its play-to-earn model. Players can earn Smooth Love Potion (SLP) tokens during gameplay, which can be traded for real money. The game operates on the Ethereum blockchain, with the help of its own sidechain called Ronin to minimize fees and transaction delays.

In Axie Infinity, each Axie is a unique NFT with various attributes, and players can breed them to create potentially more powerful teams. Axies and land plots can be traded on the game's marketplace for real money. Some rare Axies have been sold for substantial amounts, while the most expensive plot of land sold for a whopping $2.5 million. The native ecosystem token, AXS (abbreviation for Axie Infinity Shards), is used within the game for various purposes, including governance, allowing holders to vote on gameplay changes. The total supply of AXS tokens is 270 million, with a significant portion allocated for staking rewards, play-to-earn pools, the team, advisors, and the ecosystem fund.

The Axie Infinity Marketplace is central for trading Axie NFTs, including land plots that serve as homes for Axies. The game's popularity has made it a profitable venture for many, transforming gaming into a business for players globally. However, starting in Axie Infinity requires an investment, as players must purchase at least three Axies to begin playing, which can be done through the official marketplace using Ethereum. The game had an active player count of more than 358,000 for the month of March 2024, making it one of the most popular blockchain games in the world.

4. Pikamoon – MOBA-based play-to-earn mobile game

Pikamoon (PIKA) is a relative newcomer to the GameFi scene, having launched in 2023. The project has taken inspiration from popular MOBA games, such as League of Legends and DOTA, allowing players to battle against other players and computer-controlled creatures. 

Players control creatures known as Pikamoons, each represented as an NFT. Each creature has unique traits and abilities and can be further upgraded with in-game items such as special wearables and weapons. The ownership of Pikamoon NFTs grants holders the ability to access special e-sport arenas and engage in missions in the Dreva Metaverse.

Pikamoon leverages the P2E incentive model to make the gaming experience rewarding for users. By completing missions, players can earn PIKA tokens, which can be used to purchase in-game items or redeemed for real money on supported exchanges.

Pikamoon is available on both iOS and Android devices, making it a perfect choice for blockchain gamers who want to game on their mobile devices. It’s worth noting that the Pikamoon game is currently in beta, so there could be some bugs and inconsistencies new players experience. Still, the clear business model and fun gaming mechanics should provide a boost to the project’s PIKA token if, or rather, when, the player base grows, which is why we’ve picked it as one of the best penny cryptos.

5. Iluvium – RPG crypto gaming project with its own exchange

Illuvium (ILV) is an ambitious project in the blockchain gaming industry, combining elements of role-playing games (RPGs) with NFTs. Set in an open digital world, the game allows players to search for, battle with, and collect creatures called Illuvials, represented as NFTs. These creatures are categorized into various classes like Fighter, Guardian, Rogue, Psion, and Empath, and affinities such as Water, Fire, Earth, Air, and Nature, each with different abilities.

One of Illuvium's unique features is its DAO governance model, facilitated by its native ERC-20 governance token, ILV. Players holding ILV can stake their tokens to earn rewards and participate in governance decisions impacting the game’s development.

The gameplay revolves around capturing deity-like creatures, Illuvials, using in-game characters called Hunters. These creatures can be stored in Shards and are tradable on the IlluviDEX, Illuvium’s decentralized marketplace. Players can earn ILV tokens through in-game activities like competitions or completing quests. Additionally, Illuvium offers a multiplayer battle arena mode where users can compete for ILV rewards and climb ranks.

Illuvium leverages advanced Layer-2 scaling capabilities provided by Immutable X to support fast transactions and zero gas fees, which is crucial for enhancing the gaming experience on the Ethereum network. This approach is designed to overcome common blockchain gaming challenges like slow transaction speeds and high costs.

6. Yield Guild Games – Fostering connections between Web3 players

Yield Guild Games (YGG) is a unique player in the blockchain gaming space. It is structured as a DAO, focusing on integrating NFTs into virtual worlds and blockchain-based games. One of the distinctive aspects of YGG is its model of community engagement and revenue generation. It operates as a gaming guild that brings players together to earn through blockchain-based economies, particularly in P2E games. 

YGG initially gained traction by lending out NFTs like Axies (from Axie Infinity) to players who couldn't afford them, a concept that blossomed into a sustainable employment model, especially in lower-wage regions like the Philippines. This setup enables players, referred to as "scholars," to start playing without upfront costs, with the guild retaining a portion of the in-game earnings. The guild's expansion includes investments in a variety of P2E games and the acquisition of assets in these games for community use.

The YGG token, an ERC-20 coin, is central to the operation of the DAO. It facilitates governance, allowing token holders to participate in decision-making, and also serves as a means of payment within the YGG network. Token holders can stake their YGG tokens in different vaults within the DAO to generate income. The total supply of YGG tokens is 1 billion, with a significant percentage allocated to the community.

YGG’s subDAOs, which cater to specific geographic regions or NFT games, allow for optimized in-game earnings and encourage members to rent and use YGG's NFT assets. The guild has also ventured into esports, hosting tournaments and offering advisory services, particularly for blockchain-based gaming projects.

The bottom line

While blockchain gaming, in particular, the concept of NFTs, has received considerable criticism from gamers in recent years, it’s clear that the GameFi industry is here to stay. According to a report from Grand View Research, the blockchain gaming industry is set to grow at a 68% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) through 2030, reaching $301 billion by 2030 (up from $4.8 billion in 2022).

The projects featured on our list are at the forefront of this transformation and could greatly benefit from the positive growth trend going forward. While it’s impossible to predict exactly how things will shape up in the future, projects like GALA, Axie Infinity, and The Sandbox have demonstrated their ability not only to attract new players but also to retain them.

If you want to explore other exciting projects in the crypto space, we recommend checking out our list of the best metaverse games.

Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

Read on CoinCodex Investment Disclaimer