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Exploring The Different X-To-Earn Models in Blockchain

Exploring The Different X-To-Earn Models in Blockchain

Explainers Blockchain

08 Jun 2022

Over the last decade, we have seen the world gradually transition from traditional means of earning money to a gig economy. This shift was accelerated even further by the COVID-19 pandemic when people looked to Web3 for alternative sources of income.

But while we’re still in the process of normalizing remote work, a new future is already taking shape, one where crypto, decentralization, and DAOs take center stage.

The x-to-earn model molds the new future of GameFi and it may transform the way we work, play, socialize, create, and learn. The movement has its roots in play-to-earn projects such as Axie Infinity and Sandbox. In a couple of years, it expanded into different subsets, giving people new opportunities to earn money for doing simple activities, like playing games or taking online courses.

Let’s explore these x-to-earn models and some notable projects in this article.


In the x-to-earn model, Play-to-earn (P2E), users earn rewards by playing online games and accomplishing quests or objectives. Players will win gaming or metaverse tokens, which they can trade for fiat currencies in most exchanges.

Games such as Axie Infinity allow players to breed digital pets and battle other pets in an arena to win SLP (Small Love Potion). SLP is an in-game ERC20 token that can be converted to ETH or a real-world currency.

Image: Axie Infinity


The success of P2E games has ushered in new and inventive ways to incentivize participation in almost any daily activity. Another x-to-earn model, move-to-earn, is an emerging segment in GameFi where apps allow people to earn money by staying fit and healthy.

This x-to-earn model’s most representative app is Stepn where users can earn tokens by running, walking, or jogging outdoors. In the wellness category, a revolutionary super-app called Pacer is taking shape. It’s a wellness-to-earn app incubated by Hooga Gaming and backed by FTX whose model anchors on rewarding healthy habits like sleeping well and exercising regularly.

Image: Stepn


Stake-to-earn is probably one of the longest-running x-to-earn methods to get rewarded with crypto. It’s an earn while you sleep mechanism, which only requires you to HODL your coins in your wallet for a certain amount of time.

When you stake your coins with a platform such as Binance or Solana, it means locking in the coins in the platform for a specified amount of time.

You won’t be able to use the coins while they are locked in, but you retain 100% ownership of the coins.

The platform will use your coins to help secure the network. How? When you stake your coins, the coins are assigned to validators who maintain the blockchain’s integrity by validating transactions.

Image: Solana


Learn-to-earn platforms are also a growing presence in Web3. The L2E model incentivizes learning, as opposed to the traditional model where people pay to learn. In most L2E platforms, users earn rewards by accomplishing tasks such as watching tutorial videos in Coinbase or performing on-chain actions in RabbitHole.

Another good example of an L2E platform is Proof-of-Learn, a Web3 education platform that lets you earn cryptocurrency incentives by learning critical Web3 skills.

Image: Coinbase


The NFT space has grown exponentially in the last couple of years, thanks to the many established brands and public figures embracing the technology. The popularity of NFTs has also ushered in a new x-to-earn framework for earning money. Create-to-earn platforms allow digital artists to sell their creations in an NFT or digital asset format.

You may be wondering, how is it different from the traditional mechanism of selling your work with real cash? The most notable difference is that you can take advantage of the many NFT marketplaces to reach a wider audience. Plus, NFTs allow you to earn royalties even in secondary sales.

You can create your NFT on a platform such as Rarible and sell it there. Here’s how you can monetize your NFT via Rarible without technical knowledge.

Image: Rarible


In the participate-to-earn model, you can hold a certain amount of tokens in a network or Web3 ecosystem and be eligible to join its DAO or Decentralized Autonomous Organization.

A DAO is in charge of mapping out the project’s future and distributing its token supply. By simply owning a stake in the platform, you will be entitled to exclusive perks in addition to having voting rights. Since you have an active stake in the game, you get to share in its future success.

In this new x-to-earn concept, users will be rewarded for doing daily activities.

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