Star Atlas: A Burgeoning Metaverse

Technological breakthroughs create groundbreaking opportunities.

Star Atlas is one of those opportunities. It’s a futuristic metaverse that’ll utilize some of the most cutting edge technologies from some of the most innovative industries: crypto & videogames.

Metaverse has been a buzzword for a while now. It can mean different things to different people but for the scope of this article, I intend it to mean a digital world where you can transact real world value. 

Star Atlas is full of potential but there was a lot of innovation that needed to happen first. 

Bitcoin needed to take the world by storm and help form the Crypto industry, which  eventually led to Solana being developed. The metaverse that Star Atlas is creating requires the cheap fees and fast transaction speeds that Solana enables. Gaming needed to break into blockchains to enable play-to-earn incentives and Unreal Engine needed to develop the cinematic-quality video game graphics that Star Atlas will be utilizing.

On top of that, you need all of this to become a part of public conversation and consciousness.

Technological Adoption Curve - Log Scale comparing Total Crypto Users now to Total Global Internet Users between 1992-2006

Well, web3.0 is here, crypto’s adoption curve is steeper than that of the early internet, and mainstream media outlets can’t get enough of it. The technology described above all exists but its scalable implementation is still under construction so only the Galactic Marketplace is fully operational. 

The worlds being built within Star Atlas are reminiscent of other galactic metaverses such as Star Citizen but the vision and technology changes everything

Onboarding

To begin your Star Atlas Journey, you’ll need to do the following:

  1. Open an account at an exchange that sells Solana tokens. This includes FTX, FTX.US, Coinbase, and many more. 
  2. Deposit funds into your exchange account and purchase Solana tokens. 
  3. Create a web3 wallet that is compatible with SPL tokens (Solana’s standard token). I recommend using Phantom or Math
  4. Send your Solana tokens to your SPL wallet. 
  5. Go to the Galactic Marketplace and connect your SPL wallet. 
  6. Purchase a spaceship and any of the other NFTs available.
  7. Keep up with Star Atlas updates to know when the In-browser version of the game will be released. The NFTs will have immediate intrinsic value and utility at that point as they will represent tradable in-game assets.

When Star Atlas  goes live, all you have to do to play is connect it to the SPL wallet with your  spaceship NFT. 

Galactic Marketplace

The Galactic Marketplace

You can buy and sell NFTs representing digital assets within Star Atlas using the Galactic Marketplace. 

These NFTs have varying levels of rarity and the most coveted spaceships, Calico Guardians, are already selling for upwards of $30,000. You can still buy the lowest tiered spaceship for less than $30 so don’t worry about being priced out. Owning an NFT spaceship is what allows you to play Star Atlas but you can also purchase collectibles and in-game structures that will allow you to have an advantage over other players when the game is fully released.

The marketplace is integrated with Project Serum and allows users to self custody all their digital assets. It’s not the same as web2.0 games like World of Warcraft where you pay for something inside the game and you never take custody of it. If WoW shuts down or your account is forcefully closed, your asset disappears.

That’s centralization and is antithetical to Star Atlas’ vision.

Vision

Star Atlas will be rolled out in 5 phases, is currently in phase 1, and is projected to include 2-3 years of centralized development before ultimately being governed by a DAO.

Phase 1 signifies the opening of the Galactic Marketplace and Phase 2 will usher in a browser mini-game representing the minimum viable product version of Star Atlas. The in-game assets will gain utility with the release of each subsequent phase.

Long term goals include enabling player created content, adding more universe zones on additional blockchains, and facilitating actual universe discovery. The latter being accomplished by converting the in-game environment to a replication, or rather a simulation of the distant universe through the processing of data from sources like SkyHub.

Gameplay

Council of Peace Station

Each new player has the choice of three factions to choose from and they start playing in a secure zone to learn the basics of the game. Choose between the ONI (rogue aliens), MUD (the human alliance), or USTER (androids) factions.

From there, players can explore the medium-tiered safety zone where combat occurs but your assets are reset when you respawn. Combat is a pillar of the game and players have the option of marking their stance as passive or aggressive.

The final frontier beyond the medium-tiered safety zone is the wild. For those of you familiar with Runescape, the Wilderness is a place where combat is not only allowed but losers lose their digital assets. In the case of Star Atlas, these assets are permanently destroyed and victors claim the spoils.

The wild is infinite as it expands algorithmically.

This Council of Peace station, a player directed in-game asset, is where all factions are at ease. It reminds me of Coruscant from Star Wars Battlefront II.

Alternate View of the Council of Peace Station

Another pillar of the game is the structures that you’ll be building. These include space stations, shipyards, refineries, universities, and more. You can own individual stars and even build a Dyson sphere around them. Each of these assets can be auctioned off directly within the marketplace.

Professions

There are a variety of roles that are ready to be filled once the game goes live but there will always be more that can find a niche in the Star Atlas economy.

Players will earn more assets within the game by having the correct ships, crew, and more that correlate with the success of their chosen profession.

Professions include the following:

Pilot, Engineer, Transport, Rescue, Freight, Repair, Construction, Refueling, Miner, Salvage, Entrepreneur, CEO, Broker, Bounty Hunter, Pirate, Smuggler, Data Runner, Commander, General, Mercenary, and Scientist.

Economics

The economic purpose of Star Atlas is to enable players to monetize the time spent in this world and do so in a realistic fashion. Assets depreciate and some are destroyed through use such as fuel and medicine. All assets are purchased with ATLAS tokens.

ATLAS is the base unit of account for all transactions within the marketplace and throughout the metaverse. There is also POLIS which serves as the governance token in DACs. Entire space villages and metropolises will be formed. To do so, there will need to be governance in the form of DACs – Decentralized Autonomous Corporations.

DACs will enable micro-economies to be managed by those with a financial stake in them.

“The POLIS token will serve a pivotal role in these cities, permitting owners of political clout to impose taxes, fees, fines, rules, and laws on those outside the DAC wishing to gain access to these entirely independently owned cities.” Star Atlas White Paper

The IDO on Raydium & FTX listed ATLAS for $0.00138 cents and within a week or so, it was trading at $0.26. 188x. Sure, there are some IDO flippers in there but it just goes to show the amount of interest in the project.

Dev team also retains zero stake in the undistributed token supply so that’s nice.

There is much more to the economics and gameplay that I can’t fit here so check out their Whitepaper for the full breakdown.

Aesthetics

Some Land & Buildings

The visuals are pretty stunning.

Using Unreal Engine 5, Star Atlas is able to achieve levels of clarity not seen in any other video game. Your assets warp and change depending on the state they are in, such as acceleration, deceleration, and proximity to nearby celestial bodies.

A Spaceship

An exciting aspect of the roadmap is to include augmented reality layers on top of the NFTs as well as enabling player created art. This can be anything from the exterior of a spaceship to the interior of a Museum.

Player Owned Mining Structures & Land

Imagine the capability of CryptoVoxels & Decentraland with the graphics included in these images existing alongside a bustling virtual economy where people are generating enough in-game rewards to make a living.

A coveted Calico Starship

Lots of spaceships.

A Man on a little doohickey

As the game is still unreleased, these photos are promotional and can be found within various Medium posts and newsletters.

Pearce’s Hangar

Conclusion

Blockchain enabled metaverses is a trend that will only continue to increase. There is no shortage of innovation that can happen within these worlds and critics don’t understand how close this reality is.

When the Star Atlas White Paper was introduced a year ago, they referenced DeFi as being a $4 billion dollar industry. That’s cute. It’s $166 billion now.

Humans don’t think how technology operates, which is exponentially.


Star Atlas is building what I think will influence gaming for decades to come.

The team is transparent with their token allocations, the roadmap is clear, and they are already shipping products. The magnitude of their mission can not be overstated and they are progressing swimmingly.

If you’re a gamer, you’re going to want to play this. If you’re an investor, you’re going to want exposure. If you’re just a person, you’re going to want to keep up with these innovations.

They’re going to change everything.

Zachary Roth

Classical musician turned crypto analyst & entrepreneur. Trying to front run web 3.0 and share what I can with the community. Technology will increasingly become blockchain based and I’ll be right there with it. 

Linktree: https://linktr.ee/zacharyroth

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Medium: https://zacharyroth.medium.com/ 

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