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Otherside, the much-awaited metaverse game platform from the founders of the Bored Ape Yacht Club is now available to the public. Almost.
On Saturday, the Yuga Labs-created game invited 4,300 "Voyagers" to a first-look tech demonstration and tour of the immersive, ape-navigated internet environment. All Otherside players will be needed to participate in or observe one of these "First Trips" to play the game, which has not yet premiered in its entirety.
All 4,300 gamers who participated in yesterday's digital expedition to the "Biogenic Swamp" in the core of Otherside owned "Otherdeeds," or digital land titles within the platform. Otherside's developers revealed in a litepaper posted immediately after yesterday's First Trip that only Otherdeed owners and "chosen third-party developers" will be authorized to play in the game during its initial phase.
According to the litepaper, “Phase 1” will have Otherdeed owners play Voyager’s Journey, an 11-part narrative game “revolving around a strange Obelisk that has arisen in the Otherside realm.” In Phase 1, Otherdeed owners can define the platform’s key features as co-developers by utilizing the Otherside Development Kit, the platform’s set of creative tools.
The litepaper noted, “We believe in the extraordinary power of community and have seen firsthand how it can be a significant force for good in this industry. We aim to incentivize, empower, and recognize the expression, creativity, and ingenuity of Otherside’s community of contributors.”
The litepaper also reaffirmed Otherside’s dedication to interoperability: the capacity for digital assets to freely traverse the multiple digital communities or gaming platforms that may one day comprise the avatar-navigated metaverse. Yuga Labs and other proponents of an “open metaverse” view interoperability as crucial to the ethos of a future Internet that is democratic and accessible. These supporters have been vociferous about the threat posed by mega businesses such as Meta (previously Facebook), which may seek to restrict its metaverse products to maintain control over user data and analytics.
Gordon Goner, a co-founder of Yuga Labs, tweeted on Friday that Otherside competes directly with Web2 “giants.” Still, he hoped “the future will tilt toward the open, interoperable metaverse.”
Other top metaverse platforms are open to all internet users. However, Otherside is currently accessible exclusively to its digital landowners. According to CoinGecko statistics, the cheapest Otherdeeds sell for 2.8 ETH or under $3,800. Many are far more costly. This floor price was $5,800 when Otherdeeds launched in April in a furious 24-hour sale that produced $561 million in sales and badly jammed the Ethereum network.
Key ingredients in the mix that has created Yuga’s Bored Ape Yacht Club, perhaps the most renowned and well-known NFT brand globally, are exclusivity and extremely high financial hurdles to the entrance. The declaration from yesterday shows the possible conflict between the spirit of scarcity and Yuga’s intention to make Otherside the focal point of the struggle for an “open metaverse.”
Otherside is now the most prominent gated community in the metaverse.