What Is Move-to-Earn (M2E)?

Six years after Pokémon Go popularized augmented reality using smartphone GPS, we’re on the verge of a new trend. The Move-to-Earn (M2E) game combines the concept of mobile enhancement with the classic play-for-money model. However, there is another layer added that makes it unique — cryptocurrencies and NFTs.

The popular blockchain game Axie Infinity popularized the concept of passive income playing tactical battles. This is a huge step up from Fortnite or Roblox, as NFT and Axie’s token are not isolated assets. Instead, they are tradable on cryptocurrency exchanges and NFT markets.

What is Monetization?

Psychologists have long discovered that activity gamification is a great way to provide motivation and motivate people to complete tasks. One only has to look at the Fitbit fitness app, which has had over 31 million users since its launch in 2009. And that’s only counting those who use it once per week.

This is the solid proof-of-concept one needs. Fast forward to Axie Infinity as another proof of concept.

Classic online games may have their own internal economies, such as Fortnite with V-Bucks or Roblox with Robux, but these are not real tokens. They are tied to one’s account, so all virtual assets are locked and isolated.


Axie Infinity demonstrated what happens when virtual in-game assets can be tokenized, so they are tradable. Blockchain technology makes this possible, combined with smart contracts.

As players can trade in-game assets on an open market, from NFTs in the form of Axies and lands to in-game AXS tokens, you can make a living playing. In the past, this was reserved for the rare individuals who were good enough to enter eSports competitions or accumulate a sufficient following on video streaming platforms.

With Axie Infinity laying the groundwork for a viable monetization play model, many metaverse (P2E) tokens have been launched since then. Some have yet to release their much-anticipated games, such as Yuga Labs’ (by the popular Bored Ape Yacht Club) Otherside or Illuvium. However, both projects already have their respective tokens, ApeCoin (APE) and Illuvium (ILV) in circulation. Building on this momentum, move to monetize (M2E) is a natural fit, as a fusion between gambling apps and tokenized blockchain games.

Some have started calling the new brand of M2E game FitnessFi, where “Fi” stands for finance. After all, the token makes the internal economy of the game possible to spread externally. Likewise, GameFi represents blockchain games, while DeFi is the general term for decentralized finance, built on top of smart contracts.

What does M2E look like? 3 Examples of M2E

Just as P2E games reward users for playing them, M2E games reward users for engaging in physical activity. This is done by tapping into the smartphone’s GPS, accelerometer, magnetometer, proximity sensor, and gyroscope.

Overall, they form a solid foundation for smart fitness trackers. Software, in the form of an M2E game, then mines into that hardware to create a complete package for monetization. This first such project is Genopets, hosted on the Solana blockchain, which is a smart contract platform that competes with Ethereum.

1. Genopets

Last October, Genopets raised $8.3 million in a seed funding round, primarily from venture capital firms (VCs). Genopets CEO Albert Chen has been very clear about the benefits users can expect:

“Passive income for individuals as an incentive to stay physically active”

The Genopets M2E journey begins with acquiring playable NFTs, playable Genopets as well as Axie Infinity whose Axies are NFTs. However, unlike Axie, which requires users to purchase three NFTs to start playing, Genopets offers free NFT minting.

There are 3333 Genesis Genopets available with the current floor price of 47.5 SOL (~$2500) (Solana’s native cryptocurrency). By the same native token, Genopets has GENE for its cryptocurrency, just like Axie has AXS.

But wait, where does the “moving” aspect of fitness come into play?

Genopet serves as your digital fitness avatar. As your daily activities evolve, so does the virtual creature. This manifests itself in its appearance and properties. You can then lead your growing Genopet through the Genoverse adventures. In a sense, Genopets bridges the bridge between the user’s physical attributes and the virtual landscape.


Another step in the M2E direction is STEPN. This project is also hosted on Solana, but it uses NFT sneakers instead of imaginary creatures to track the player’s movements. For example, the sneakers featured in the tweet below sell for 2,100 SOL (~$11,000), with the proceeds going to charity.

Unlike Genopets, a native token, STEPN has two:

  1. Green Satoshi Token (GST): In-game utility tokens for minting NFTs and other spends.
  2. Green Metaverse Token (GMT): A governance token that provides players with voting rights in the development of the project.

Although STEPN is still in beta, its Twitter is impressive with over half a million followers. In the final phase of STEPN development, it will issue a multi-chain wallet. This means that the tokens or cryptocurrencies (SOL, ETH) earned through the sale of NFTs, can be deposited or withdrawn directly. Such a thing would not be possible with traditional in-game tokens that are account locked, thus worthless.


Finally, it is WIRTUAL with the motto “convert your healthy habits into cryptocurrency”. The WIRTUAL app can mine not only smartphones but also smartwatches, such as Fitbit, Garmin or Strava. The gameplay aspect revolves around an NFT character that can be customized as physical activity unlocks rewards.

Interestingly, WIRTUAL covers the entire spectrum of exercise, from walking and cycling to swimming and dancing. With rewards unlocked, M2E players receive a unique NFT, which can be sold. In addition, WIRTUAL has WIRTUAL tokens that players earn based on their activity level.

Is it worth getting into the M2E game?

If you already enjoy running or other sports, you can also try these upcoming M2E games. After all, there’s no extra effort other than installing apps and then monitoring the progress from time to time. Therefore, it has passive income potential compared to zero potential.

If you often struggle to stay motivated, M2E games could be the ticket to go.

blue cyber graphic with the phrase nft in the middle

What happens when the NFT game stops working?

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https://www.makeuseof.com/what-is-move-to-earn-m2e/ What Is Move-to-Earn (M2E)?

Sarah Ridley

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