All Roads Lead to SPS
Every time you hear @yabapmatt say "SPS" you can hear him get a little tickled down under.
He's been screaming from the rooftops that SPS is very exciting since before the airdrop started but for obvious reasons he's measured in what he actually says about the "why".
The "why", as far as I can tell is that all of Splinterlands will soon be an apparatus to gain SPS and SPS will be the ruler of not just the Splinter Lands but also the worlds and economies that pick up around the core technologies that Splitnerlands is built on.
If you pay attention you'll hear that the devs have high hopes for not just partnerships but also the tech Splinterlands runs on. They are very excited about the ability for other games to use their nodes and infrastructure to break into blockchain gaming.
And what is the key to the nodes? SPS of course.
But let's just look at Splinterlands for now.
In the near future, DEC will no longer be given out as rewards. It will remain as the main transactional token in the game but you won't be able to get it by playing the game anymore.
DEC is about to exist only as a derivative of SPS.
At the same time, vouchers are looking like they will continue to gain importance. There's talk of them being needed to enter tournaments, buy potions, attend real world events, and to buy regular and promotional cards and packs. It's likely they'll find some uses in land next year as well.
And what are vouchers if not derivatives of SPS and SPS nodes?
Vouchers are a way to use the value of having SPS without having to sell your SPS.
To get DEC, on the other hand, will require that you burn SPS to get more of this transactional token.
I know we will also be able to burn cards to get DEC but if you think about it, the burn mechanic of SPS is designed to be used when there is massive buying pressure on DEC. It is unlikely that cards would be cheap enough to burn for DEC at the same time the game is actually seeing a surge in DEC demand.
Bullishness should extend across assets and that means, SPS and some LP rewards are the only avenues for new DEC.
I should mention that they are also thinking about getting rid of credits.
Collection power going extinct
Collection power/card power, or CP for short is not really a transactional token like DEC or vouchers but it does have value in the game as it allows you admittance into tournaments and leagues.
There have been hints that CP may also be replaced by SPS and if you understand the next part of the Splinterlands plan, this makes a lot of sense.
The next ranked rewards update is set to come out this quarter according to their new roadmap.
(BTW, art on this roadmap is very indicative of how far Splinterlands has come since I started playing in March of 2021. It's incredible how much more polish is on this game now.)
In the next iteration of the ranked rewards we will see SPS replace DEC rewards for playing the game. This is only part of what's planned though. After that happens, one of the next things they'll be working on is the ability to stake your SPS on other players you think will do well.
A player who has SPS staked on them as well as the SPS staker will both be rewarded based on the player's performance and the amount of stake that is on them.
But it goes further.
At some point, the only way to gain rewards for playing Splinterlands (which will now come mainly in the form of SPS and cards) is to have SPS staked on you. The SPS staked on you could be your own or someone else's but if you don't have anything staked on you, you don't get rewards for playing.
There's a really cool feature in this which is that there's a limited amount of potency when staking on a player. Everyone can't just stake on the same person because the rewards will become spread too thin so the trick will be to find diamonds in the rough.
Since everything is public, secrets won't be kept for long which means in a perfect world, the top earning stakers will be people who are great at recruiting quality players that are unknown to the Splinterlands community. Just constant feeds of new high quality players who may not be able to afford to jump in on their own.
Unlike traditional scholarships though, once they are in, the whole community can support them if they're good and dedicated.
But let's look at what else happened here:
If they're going to cap the amount of earnings a staker can get out of a player but we also know that earnings are better when players are in top leagues, it makes sense to say that the amount of SPS you have staked on you, and not your CP, is what dictates how high you can go in leagues.
Let's say for a second that it takes 5k SPS staked on you to be in gold league and 10k to be in diamond league. Now let's say that someone has 10k stake on them but they are sitting in gold. Anything above the 5k stake on them is just diluting the rewards. The stakers will be getting only half the possible rewards per unit of SPS staked and the player won't be maxing out his rewards since he could be in diamond.
If the player doesn't move up, they risk losing their stake and disappointing those who put them up. Now there is encouragement from the community for all players to keep advancing.
Does it make sense to say they can't move up because they don't have the CP when the community feels they are good enough to make it? CP really makes very little sense at a certain point since it only mildly references card quality and gold cards can skew everything heavily. Matt has already said a few times that CP is a bad metric and SPS would be better. I agree.
Splinterlands as a spectator sport
Splinterlands becomes a spectator sport where tens or even hundreds of thousands of players have real stakes on the performance of others. And all the value that creates goes into SPS. As we know, this is crypto so if SPS starts to move and gains the attention of the wider crypto community, it could catch fire. And as crypto gets ever wider adoption and the digital world becomes more part of our lives, this could lead to Splinterlands being a household name.
So what we end up with is a spectator's sport with everyone vying to make more SPS because without SPS you can't access rewards, you can't acquire DEC, you can't get vouchers, you can't enter tournaments, you can't vote, and you likely won't be able to run your land if you're lucky enough to have any.
And what about cards?
Cards will be important as tools and if Splinterlands really does become a household name, some cards may be valuable based on things like your favorite player using them but if we're honest, cards are never going to stop coming and the runs of each pack will only get bigger.
Sure, individually cards are limited but with the new modern mode they are going to have to keep replacing cards with the next new version of them. I'm been swearing by my chickens for a while but guess what can't be used in Modern? At some point it's likely they'll come out with a card to take the chickens place in modern. And then two years later they'll have to do it again.
Rift Watchers is a side set with 46 new cards in it, they are now going to be releasing over 100 new cards per year. Possibly close to 150 cards per year. This means there will always be a new version of your old favorite card that are printed in wild abundance and available in packs right now. Cards may lose their status as appreciating assets and instead just be tools to get more SPS.
When it comes down to it, SPS, land, and node licenses are the only actual limited items in the game. It is likely that almost all the value in the game gets transferred to these assets. And since the most accessible will be SPS, all roads will ultimately lead there.
I find the future of Splinterlands to be very exciting and the more I think about it the more I realize I want more SPS. So far I have been fortunate enough to acquire 100k SPS and if Splinterlands ever reaches its true potential in the metaverse, that will probably make me quite wealthy, but its hard to see that now with all these people holding so much more than me and with so much more SPS to be minted over the next five years.
There could be a time once the minting stops that being able to say you have 1000 SPS would put you in rare company. It's incredible that you can buy that right now for like $60.
BTW, it looks like the end of season rental ramps might have just stopped. More on this later.
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