Episode 3

Where's the Value in Owning Community in the Metaverse?

In this Community Extra from Coinage Episode 3, Zack and Chris Ebeling, co-founder of Zed Run, discuss its foray into the metaverse with Human Park.

By Zack Abrams

November 14, 2022

No one else does horse racing on the blockchain as well as Zed run. But there are plenty of projects — from Decentraland and the Sandbox to juggernauts like Meta — that are trying to become the go-to multiplayer metaverse experience.

So when Zed Run's parent company, Virtually Human Studios (VHS), announced their next project, Human Park, some in the NFT community were puzzled by this pivot. Set in "a retro-cyberpunk world drawing inspiration from the often ambiguous relationship between good and evil," according to their press release, the game is free-to-play but additional experiences are unlocked through ownership of certain NFTs.

And to launch the game, VHS sent Noods. No, that's not a typo — Human Park's inhabitants are called Noods, and VHS airdropped its first set to early adopters.

To Chris Ebeling, co-founder of VHS, expanding into the metaverse makes complete sense.

"I'm not saying we're not going to do more sports, but Human Park was a real tactical move for us also to kind of diversify, said Ebeling. "With Human Park, there is an ability for us to create a real core metaverse ecosystem that is a connector of all ecosystems."

Ebeling sees Human Park not as a competitor to Zed Run, but something that could eventually enhance the Zed Run experience through interoperable virtual worlds.

"Imagine jumping in with your avatar or your Nood and your friends and going to a Zed Run racetrack in these worlds and experiencing it different," said Ebeling.

Chris knows that gamers have shown themselves to be resistant to some NFT integrations, but he sees a world in which both blockchain-powered games and conventional games exist alongside each other. With the power of Web3 though, users can share in the success of their favorite games and platforms.

"What we find appealing at Virtual Human is that this this gives a new means of wealth distribution back to the players," said Ebeling. "Not only are people playing your game, but they're owning a part of it."

For more thoughts on the metaverse, check out the full Community Extra from Coinage Episode 3 above.

Coinage is a community-owned show answering crypto's biggest questions. You can apply to co-own the show with us, and weigh in on what we're building at Coinage.Media/join.