Grease Monkey Games, an Australian subsidiary of blockchain video game maker Animoca Brands, received a MegaGrant from Cary, N.C.-based creators of Fortnite and Epic Games. Grease Monkey will use the grant to support its Torque Drift 2 motor sport game, which is currently under development. It’s the latest step in Animoca and Epic Games’ goals in developing the metaverse.
MegaGrants, a specific type of financial grant from Epic Games, range from $5,000 to $500,000. They intend to cover game development, architecture projects, film production, academic uses and software development for projects using Epic’s proprietary Unreal Engine. Unreal Engine is a suite of 3D creation tools used in developing games, creating television content and visualizing models. Grease Monkey didn’t disclose the total amount of the grant. But it plans to use the funds to develop new drift physics for the upcoming game.
Torque Drift 2 is the latest in Grease Monkey’s lineup of blockchain-based racing games. The newest iteration of Torque Drift includes functional NFTs of various cars that players can race. Grease Monkey says this is a “core feature to deliver true digital ownership of game assets to players.”
Making the Metaverse
Animoca Brands and Epic Games are both heavily involved in developing the metaverse. Animoca’s portfolio includes more than 340 games and studios centered around blockchain technology and NFTs. Some of the names include Axie Infinity, The Sandbox and Yield Guild Games. While Animoca believes the future of the metaverse lies in Web3, Epic Games has a more traditional view.
What is the metaverse?
Epic is supported by China-based internet company Tencent Holdings (TCEHY), which owns 40% of the company. And Epic has been building out its Fortnite game from its early days as a battle royal free-for-all to include concerts, show screenings and other social events for players. Even if Epic doesn’t become the biggest name in the metaverse, sharing its unreal engine ensures it’s at least built with Epic’s technology.
Many companies are racing to establish dominance in the metaverse. Meta (META), the company formerly known as Facebook, rebranded to reflect its new emphasis on virtual reality. Meta has invested roughly $10 billion in the endeavor so far. But its VR graphics are years behind that of Unreal Engine and many applications are far from ready for everyday use. Others, like Roblox (RBLX), allow players to create their own games and content within the preexisting video game for a more grassroots development of the metaverse.
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