How to Join the Metaverse
Start by choosing the metaverse platform you want to join or participate in. There are metaverse gaming platforms, museums, skate parks, gardens, real estate games and more that each require different tech, digital wallets, or devices to join. Research your chosen metaverse platform to find out which items you need to get started. Next, create an account with the metaverse platform you want to join. In some cases, especially with gaming universes, you may need to purchase an NFT to play. However, creating an account is almost always free.
Metaverse Items You May Need
Items you may need or want before joining a metaverse:
- Augmented reality (AR) glasses
- Gaming console
- Smartphone or PC
- Haptic suit, vest or gloves (optional)
- Motion controllers (optional)
- VR headset (Oculus, HTC Vive, Playstation VR, etc.)
- Digital wallet
The Oculus Quest can run you between $ 300 to $ 400 retail depending on the model — immersive VR gear isn’t cheap. For people who don’t have VR gear, but do have a smartphone, there are VR headsets where you place your phone inside — like VR-sky — and typically cost around $ 20 to $ 30. However, you may not need VR gear depending on the game or metaverse you choose.
Do You Need Cryptocurrency to Join the Metaverse
You may not need cryptocurrency or a digital wallet to enter a metaverse. Many metaverse platforms allow users to enter without paying anything, simply requiring an account, a compatible device and email for verification. However, some metaverses have in-game shops, NFTs for sale and in-game economies that enhance the experience. Cryptocurrency and a digital wallet may be required to enjoy the play-to-earn (P2E) aspects of a metaverse game.
A metaverse game is designed to be more interactive than a traditional game. Some examples of play-to-earn (P2E) metaverse games are Roblox, Upland, The Sandbox and Decentraland. Most of these games are built on blockchain technology, allowing players to buy and sell in-game NFTs.
How immersive and decentralized these games are varies. Roblox, for example, supports the use of VR gear but isn’t built on a blockchain, where Decentraland has no VR support, but is built on Ethereum. A P2E metaverse game typically requires a digital wallet to play and earn.
Social spaces are virtual reality spaces where users enter a metaverse and use an avatar (typically 3D) to socialize with others. A metaverse social space differs from traditional chat rooms and VRChat, in that cryptocurrency and blockchain tech is essential to enjoying the full capabilities of the platform.
Spatial is an example of a metaverse 3D social space, built on Binance Smart Chain blockchain. You can use a variety of VR tech to enter and meet up with friends, coworkers and family. Companies can use Spatial as a way for employees to meet for chats, collaboration and presentations, too.
Social space metaverses typically allow users to buy land plots to display art, build structures or simply have their own space to meet up. You need
a digital wallet to buy and sell NFT art, structures or avatar clothing.
NFT Art Galleries
NFT art galleries are popular in the metaverse space, primarily for displaying NFT art and projects.
Sotheby’s Metaverse is a famous example, which has become an online space for rare and expensive NFT art. Users can bid on art and view collections and display their art in an interactive environment.
*To buy and sell NFTs in art galleries, plan on having a digital wallet where you store your NFTs.
Virtual Real Estate
Purchasing land plots and parcels is a key aspect in many P2E games and even social spaces. Decentraland and Upland are prime examples of virtual real estate in the metaverse.
Upland is a virtual P2E where users buy parcels that are mapped to the real world — build structures, sell land for a profit and earn cryptocurrency. In Decentraland and Sandbox, parcels can be used to construct casinos, art galleries, games, host events and much more.
*Buying virtual real estate in a metaverse almost always requires a digital wallet and cryptocurrency.
Join a Metaverse Community
Joining a metaverse’s Discord server or subreddit helps you stay current with news, updates and even rare NFT drops. Other members of the community may even be willing to help with any questions you have — these forums can be a wealth of information.
Many crypto companies join Discord to update and interact with the community around their product. Reddit is a popular cryptocurrency hub as well, where you’re likely to find a subreddit dedicated to a specific metaverse, coin or NFT marketplace.
What to Watch Out For
When interacting with a metaverse, losses, security and potential scams are something to consider.
- Asset security. Cryptocurrency and NFTs are stored in software or hardware digital wallets. If someone gets the login information for your wallet, they have access to your accounts and there’s usually no way to get them back once they’re stolen. Keep your passwords and seed phrases safe.
- NFT volatility. An NFT’s value is largely based on consumer interest, rarity and accessibility. We don’t recommend investing more in cryptocurrency or NFTs than you can afford to lose: there’s no guaranteed payout with these digital assets.
- Scams. Rug pulling scums and fishing attempts are rampant in cryptocurrency and NFT spaces. Never give out your wallet’s passphrase to anyone, and look for red flags when purchasing NFTs on public marketplaces.