Metaverse for Beginners: A Guide to the Virtual World
We must all have heard of the metaverse and how it is shaping the virtual world for good. However, when it comes to the core understanding of how it works and what lies ahead of it, we have very little to almost no understanding. So, to prevent you from falling into FOMO and missing out on all the major advancements in the virtual world, starting from Facebook changing its name to Meta, to BAYC Lands topping the selling price of over $285 Million, we have curated this guide to metaverse for beginners.
What is the Metaverse and How does it Work?
In the simplest form, the metaverse can be described as an online space where people can go in their selected avatars and do things like shopping, working, dancing, etc. just like they do in the real world. The term may have acquired so much popularity only now that giants like Facebook are changing their names, however, the concept of online communities has existed since the 1980s.
In fact, the concept of Metaverse and digital communities has gained a lot of utility in the face of the pandemic when hosting physical events has become such a nightmare, and at some points, even punishable! Keeping that in mind, metaverse was not only used for hosting birthday parties or conducting online meetings but also, the news of couples hosting metaverse weddings made headlines around the world.
On 5th February 2022, a couple from Bhopal, a city in the central part of India, became India’s first couple to get married on a metaverse platform. The marriage was organized on an Indian Metaverse Platform called Yug Metaverse. The couple, Abhijeet Goel and Sansrati entered the wedding venue inside the digital event in their digital avatars. A total of 500 guests witnessed the ceremony in their own avatars in the metaverse.
The couple wanted to host a great wedding ceremony that would be remembered for generations to come. They also wanted all their family members living in India and other countries to be at their wedding and bless them without having to compromise on their safety in view of the pandemic. So they decided to choose a beachside venue in the digital world and invited all their guests to attend their wedding digitally.
Similarly, there are a number of examples from around the world where couples decide to ditch the traditional wedding system and decided to host a virtual event in Metaverse instead. UAE witnessed its first metaverse wedding on 19th May 2022. Now that we know how the metaverse is revolutionizing the old ways of conducting events or simply interacting with one another, let’s dive into its history a little deeper and understand which technologies power the world of the metaverse.
What is the Technology Used in the Metaverse?
The primary technologies used in the metaverse are artificial intelligence, augmented reality, and virtual reality. In addition to these, other technologies that play a major role in the virtual world are IoT, 3D modeling, blockchain, and cryptocurrencies. Let’s see how each of these technologies works and fuels the virtual world’s revolution.
Artificial intelligence has acted as a major revolution in the world of planning and decision-making. It is not only reducing the human effort of gathering abundant information but also when combined with machine learning, AI can be a great way of predicting and estimating future events on the basis of past records. This means that AI can be extremely useful in providing a life-like experience to the users inside the metaverse.
Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies
It won’t be a lie if we say in this guide to metaverse for beginners, that blockchain technology forms the building blocks of most of the digital world items such as cryptocurrencies, and NFTs, and allows users to prove their ownership. Similarly, blockchains and cryptocurrencies constitute a major part of the metaverse and typically contribute to enhancing the user experience of the metaverse. For example, cryptocurrencies are used to buy and sell in-game items like skins, and weapons, buy land in the virtual world, and trade digital collectibles.
As the name suggests, the metaverse won’t be possible without 3D modeling and reconstruction technology in order to create a virtual world that looks exactly like the real world. While the technology had gained much popularity only during the worldwide pandemic that inhibited the buyers from viewing properties and buying them, the same concept has been successful in finding much more exciting use cases like the metaverse itself.
Internet of Things
Internet of Things or commonly known as IoT is a system that is designed to connect the objects and equipment of the real world via sensors and connectors. When used inside the metaverse, IoT can help create a more realistic user experience inside the digital world. For example, connecting the weather reports via IoT to the virtual world can allow it to mimic the weather of the real world.
Augmented and Virtual Reality
Augmented reality and virtual reality are the two prime points of entry to the virtual world. While both of these technologies are similar in terms of what they deliver, the way they deliver is where AR and VR differ from each other. With AR, you can access the digital world from any of your devices like smartphones and computers as it uses digital elements and morph them into the real world. On the other hand, accessing the virtual world through VR is a bit more difficult and requires dedicated equipment like VR headsets, sensors, and gloves.
However, both of them present an early image of the metaverse and significantly contribute to delivering an immersive 3D experience to the users in the virtual world. Also, as the metaverse acquires much more popularity and companies begin investing in upgrading their VR equipment, we can easily expect a more realistic digital world experience where we can hear, touch, and feel the things inside the metaverse.
Metaverse for Beginners: What is the Origin of Metaverse?
The history and origin of metaverse date back to the late 20th century, in 1983 when the internet was first born and the transport network protocol was established. This protocol allows networks to communicate with each other. After 10 years of the birth of the internet, the first web browser named Mesh was developed and released. Also, in 1992, Neal Stephenson published a book name Snow Crash that first introduced the world Metaverse into the world.
By the advent of the early 21st century, the Second Life, practically the first example of the inception of the Metaverse was developed where the users could interact with each other and share information in a three-dimensional space. Soon after that, Roblox, another virtual game was developed that took the 3D experience to the next level by allowing users to create their own avatars and used digital economics.
In 2009, blockchain technology and the first digital cryptocurrency, that is, Bitcoin was released, allowing peer-to-peer transactions without a centralized authority governing the system. Then in 2011, Ernest Cline published a novel by name Ready Player One that inspired many individuals and companies to utilize the amazing technology of virtual reality.
In 2015, Decentraland, the first actual metaverse was created by Esteban Ordanois with a vision to create a self-contained economy where users could rent, buy, sell the land, put advertisements, and play games. Lastly, by 2021, many different projects were developed like Microsoft Mesh, Axie Infinity, and Fortnite were released, setting all new standards of the metaverse and offering a new scope of advancements.
Metaverse for Beginners: What can You do in Metaverse?
Metaverse, apart from offering a 3D gaming experience, has been successful in providing people with many different use cases such as building things in the metaverse, creating virtual offices, and creating and buying digital assets like metaverse land, NFTs, avatars, collectibles, and so on. Let’s see what you can do in metaverse in more detail.
Interact with people from around the world
Have you heard of Spatial, a metaverse application that allows you to break into special rooms designed to host virtual events and conferences? Such apps allow you to log in from a Web2 as well as Web3 infrastructure by connecting your wallet.
In addition to this, there are numerous more applications in the making that are going to take over the online meeting world that is previously occupied by Google Meet, Zoom, and apps alike. The users can either explore the existing rooms or create their own special rooms by renting spaces.
Buy virtual land and assets like NFTs
As you already know, metaverses are built around small packets of virtual land whose ownership is defined by NFTs stored on blockchains. This means that at each point in time, there is just one owner of the particular piece of land in the metaverse.
People are welcome to invest in the virtual world and buy these packets of land which are expected to increase in value over the long course of time. Apart from virtual land, you may buy NFTs created out of things used inside the games and metaverse.
In case you are not yet sure of the ongoing popularity and the huge scope of the metaverse in the future and still wish to invest in the metaverse, you can do so by investing your money in the companies powering the metaverse. Also, you can set up a metaverse index fund and invest your money in it. The best feature of MVI fund is that your portfolio will automatically balance itself at the end of the day depending upon the best players of the day.
Just like the actual world where you have a distinct skin color and a dressing style, you can create a digital avatar of yourself by choosing the most relevant accessories and human characteristics. There are a number of companies like Ready Player Me that lets you create your virtual avatars and use them in a variety of different games and metaverse platforms.
Advertise in metaverse
As mentioned above in this guide to metaverse for beginners, the metaverse is just like the real world with land, avatars, buildings, etc. So, you can advertise your products and services inside the virtual world. This can be the most effective advertising technique in case your product or service revolves around the virtual world, for example, games, NFTs, etc. This is also the easiest way to advertise in front of your target audience.
A countless number of games like Minecraft, Second Life, and Roblox have already been working for two or three decades to deliver a metaverse-like experience to their users. In fact, Second Life is one such game where the users have been known to spend their entire lives inside the games.
Since 2020, more popular games like Decentraland, The Sandbox, Axie Infinity, and others that are centered around digital currencies, have gained a lot of popularity. People are spending fortunes of money on buying gaming skins, in-game equipment, and so much more. Also, the games have been successful in making money by launching their NFT collections that the users can use inside the game or lend to anyone inside the game.
Metaverse for Beginners: How to Enter Metaverse?
Before we jump straight into decoding the steps of accessing Metaverse, let us first tell you some of the prerequisites you need to enter metaverse. The two most important things you will need are a laptop or computer and a crypto wallet. Now, you cannot access metaverse with a basic computer. There must be enough computational power and GPU speed to let you enter the metaverse. Once you have these two things, it’s time to set your foot in the virtual world.
- Type “meta.io” on your browser.
- Set up your account by following the prompts. Once your account is fully set up, click the “Get Started” button.
- Search for the metaverse and choose one from all the available options. There are numerous platforms like Decentraland, The Sandbox, etc. Choose one that you find is the best fit for you.
- Now, you can download the Metaverse application on your device and scan the code. A play button will pop up on your screen.
- Create your Avatar by picking the skin color, clothes, and accessories. You are all set to experience 3D virtual reality.
5 Best Metaverse Platforms in 2022
A guide to metaverse for beginners is complete without the inclusion of the list of top metaverse platforms. Hence, in this guide to metaverse for beginners, we have talked about the top 5 metaverse platforms that are shaping the virtual landscape for good.
There is no denying the fact that Decentraland has acted as one of the first movers in the field of metaverse technology and contributed massively to expanding the use cases of the metaverse. From allowing users to experiment with digital artworks, and developing solutions to challenges in the virtual world, to monetizing their work, Decentraland and its unique marketplace have been a savior for many.
Roblox, as we have already mentioned in the earlier part of this blog, is one of the oldest players in the world of virtual gaming. However, the platform has now partnered with NFL and uses virtual reality to allow users to create games of their own. The platform aims to gather all the virtual experiences under one roof, which is why we believe that Roblox may have the best shot at becoming the largest metaverse platform in the future.
As the name predicts, Axie Infinity is definitely a peak into the future of the metaverse. From displaying flying creatures to mutants, this metaverse platform is worth a try if the virtual world and its ways of working fascinate you. The game is different from others in the fact that it requires players to use innovative strategies and tactics to beat their opponents. Also, it has a simplified in-game economy, thanks to the ever-booming blockchain technology.
The Sandbox is not a big name only on the list of top metaverse platforms in this guide to metaverse for beginners, but also, the platform has a great reputation in the world of gaming NFTs. It allows users to create, buy, sell, and trade virtual gaming NFTs. On top of it, the platform is also popular for letting users create rooms and host virtual parties and exhibitions for exhibiting their innovations inside the game.
Illuvium is another great addition to this list of top metaverse platforms. The virtual game is built on the Ethereum blockchain and offers the players an added advantage of trading collectibles. The game consists of massive landscapes, individually dedicated to hunting and hiding magical treasures. In addition to this, the game offers a timeline feature that lets users explore the storytelling adventure while riding on the design of the game.
Metaverse for Beginners: Conclusion
As we can see the metaverse technology is surely going to touch newer heights of innovation as more and more companies begin developing their own metaverses. In addition to this, the metaverse will shift the force in the world of digital currencies because new metaverse coins are being born every day. Therefore, we strongly feel the intuition that this is the right time to invest in metaverse coins and related companies.
A passionate writer, seasonal poet, and feminist, I am trying to wrap my head around all the topics under the sky. You can often see me talking about crypto, social issues, traveling across the globe, how I am trying to change the world, and how you can be my ally!