Web3 Games

How to Play DeFi Kingdoms and Earn JEWEL Tokens

5.0 | by Valerio Puggioni

Let's be honest: Right now, the state of crypto games is... well, not much seems to be happening, especially compared to traditional games, which boast a strong lineup every year.

With the Metaverse hype dying down, it looks like the dust is beginning to settle. The hype around Axie Infinity has also begun to wane. So we cast our eyes on several other DeFi games to see if there are any worthy competitors.

And one such promising project is DeFi Kingdoms

But what is it, and what makes it different? Let me take you on a journey, fraught with risks of impermanent loss and other unspeakable demons. By the end, we'll find out whether playing this game might be worth investing your time and money. 

You ready? 


How to make money in DeFi Kingdoms

© Docs | DeFi Kingdoms

DeFi Kingdoms is a well-thought-out and highly organized blockchain game. (It definitely doesn't feel like a cash grab, like many other recent games do.) For a normie, the game looks just like your typical 16-bit RPG from the good ole' days of Nintendo. 

But we're just scratching the surface here. It's best to think of the game as a skin for all the wonderful financial instruments granted to us by decentralized finance (DeFi)

Each non-playing character (NPC) in the game represents a way for you to engage with a different smart contract. For instance, the Marketplace is a decentralized exchange (DEX), dressed up to be reminiscent of classic NES games like Chrono Trigger and Zelda. But underneath it all, this isn't just a DEX with a pretty face.

In terms of total value locked (TVL), it's the largest DEX on the Harmony chain. And the game tokenomics is designed to encourage HODLing JEWEL coins. With the recent crash, I’m filling my bags up now! (Don’t do as I say though. I’m really, really good at placing bad bets.) 

© Valerio Puggioni | HODL Content

So it helps to think of DeFi Kingdoms as an ecosystem of DeFi protocols, combined with certain Play-to-Earn (P2E) mechanics, as well as crypto-gamified elements like questing for rewards. That pretty much wraps up the gameplay mechanics. 

Let's take a closer look at how you can get started playing the game, and more importantly, the different strategies we can use to earn money in DeFi Kingdoms, like questing, staking, and providing liquidity.  


How to Play DeFi Kingdoms

© Valerio Puggioni | HODL Content

Before we get started, let's go over the 3 prerequisites to join the game:

1. A supported web browser (I strongly recommend Brave, which pays you in the Brave Attention Token [BAT] whenever you view an ad)

2. A supported wallet like Metamask (one of the best web wallets, hands down) 

3. Some ONE tokens 

Important point on purchasing ONE tokens through a centralized exchange (CEX). At the time of writing, Binance has temporarily paused withdrawals for ONE tokens. If you’re unable to withdraw your ONE tokens, you won’t be able to use them in the game! I eventually got mine off KuCoin instead. 

© Valerio Puggioni | HODL Content

(For more choices of markets, head over to CoinGecko’s ONE token page and click on the "Markets" tab for a list of all the exchanges you can buy ONE tokens from. The tab lists both decentralized and centralized exchanges.)

Once you get your tokens, withdraw them to your Metamask wallet. (Make sure to set the network as "ONE". And if your ONE tokens aren't appearing in your Metamask wallet, don't panic! We simply need to add the Harmony network, which you can do by following the instructions here.)

Once you're in-game, the first thing you'll want to do is to head over to the Marketplace. There, you'll find Merchant Matoya, a trader who can help you trade your ONE tokens for JEWEL, the game’s native governance token. 

In the Market, we also come across the Item Shop, run by Vendor Zada. This is where you'll be buying actual in-game items (NFTs), like anti-poison potions or a golden pet egg, the benefits of which I’m sure will be revealed at a later date. All items which you'll be using if you actually want to play the game, by the way. And you’ll be purchasing them with gold (DFKGOLD)!

 © Valerio Puggioni | HODL Content

If you're a DeFi degen, though, you might get your kicks buying crypto assets here just to trade on the crypto market. You can also find Druid Lazarus lurking around here. He's the guy who operates the Liquidity Pools (LP), where you can buy LP tokens for liquidity mining. You can spend your LP tokens with the same Druid Lazarus again in the Gardens for liquidity mining. Several currency pairs are available, some with triple-digit APRs (subject to change over time)! 

By providing liquidity, you're helping make sure the game always has funds for other players in the ecosystem. That's why the rewards are so high (They give you a cut of all the DEX trading fees too). Another reason the rewards are lucrative is due to the risk of impermanent loss. This is nothing to scoff at. I've made this mistake and lost several thousands of dollars like a total noob. 

If impermanent loss concerns you, and you want to play it safe, head over to the bank. At the Bank, you can stake your JEWEL tokens with Banker Ian. By staking your JEWEL tokens, you can earn roughly 1/3 of all trading fees in xJEWEL, depending on the floating bank ratio. (Not bad for a safe bet, eh?)  


How do I Get a Hero in DeFi Kingdoms?

© Docs | DeFi Kingdoms

Getting yourself a Hero is where the real game begins. Head over to the Tavern, where Agent Selina is waiting at a table. She's your NFT trader, so she can help you sell, buy, and view all your Heroes. Think of Selina as a secondary marketplace. In other words, there is no minting here. No randomization. Nada. Just a Hero browser with awesome filters. This is how you acquire your first Hero. 

Keep in mind, though, that a Hero can run you several hundred dollars, so do your due diligence. Just as with other NFTs, not all heroes are created equal (even though they may be in a similar price range!).  In any case, some rules of thumb still apply, such as rarity. The rarer a Hero, the pricier you can expect it to be. But it doesn’t necessarily come with better stats; rarity is currently the main determinant of the price. You'll also want to consider the skill set and attributes to match the assigned role of the Hero. (For instance, a Sorceress with a lot of strength and dexterity probably won't fare as well as one with more magical properties.) 

So what can you do with Heroes?

There are two types of quests: Adventure quests and Profession quests. The Adventure quests aren’t available just yet, and information about them is scant. We only know that they’ll involve fighting evil, and you’ll be rewarded with the spoils from battle. But since we're already investing in a Hero, some future-proofing might be a smart move. 

For the Profession quests, you'll be able to pick a Hero with a specific profession and specialize them further. These professions currently include Miner, Gardener, Forager, and Fisher. You'll want your Hero's role and attributes to match their Profession as well. (They affect critical stats like your stamina and rewards.) For example, you can have a Hero whose profession is a Miner. By mining, you gain Mining profession experience points, which should increase the value of your loot as well as your stamina (i.e., how much energy you can expend to earn rewards). Regardless of your profession, though, you’ll eventually be able to use your Hero to fight evil in Adventure quests.

But say you want to mint a Hero, instead of acquiring one. Minting a hero gives you a chance to acquire a powerful hero that might have cost you a fortune had you chosen to purchase it from Selina in the Tavern. The downside, of course, is that you never know what you’re going to get, so there’s a healthy dose of luck involved! 

You have to buy your very first Hero from Selina first. That’s because minting a Hero requires you to have a Hero in your possession already. If you already have one and want to try your hand at minting a Hero, travel to the Portal and approach the Summoner, Druid Lisa. Make sure to bring along some Gaia's Tears (DFKTears), because that's what you're going to use to "summon" (mint) your new Hero (minimum 20 DFKTears required).  

© Docs | DeFi Kingdoms

Here at the Portal you can either Summon a Hero or Hire a Hero. Because you need two Heroes to summon one, if you only have one Hero available, Hiring a Hero will let you pay for a Hero to combine with the one you already own. By burning both of them, you can mint yourself a new Hero. 

Be careful though. Since the Portal is where Heroes are randomly generated, there's a risk you can end up with a common Hero. A common NFT is the lowest valued in terms of both utility and price. So burning two uncommon ones and landing a common one won't be a good roll. 

But hey, the upside potential is much greater. And did I mention that it's addictive?


Is DeFi Kingdoms Profitable?

© Docs | DeFi Kingdoms

As with most crypto games, this one is still being rolled out. But this isn't another copy of Axie Infinity or a blatant cash grab. Major plans are underway for this gem on the roadmap, including land sales and more quests. 

Currently, there are a few quests, like the Wishing Well. (The Wishing Well doesn't have a label. You have to click on the well in the middle of the map.) We also have a few Profession quests so you can aim to level up your Profession skill points and win item drops.

The game isn't a traditional RPG quest like WoW, or even Axie Infinity. At least, not yet anyway. Right now, it feels more like rolling the dice for randomized outcomes. (At the Wishing Well, you stand to win experience points [XP] and Gaia's Tears too.)

So let’s sum up. You might not have used a DeFi protocol before because of how intimidating it looks or sounds.  If you’ve been looking for a way to give it a try, DeFi Kingdoms might be the perfect intro. 

Why? Because it can help you play around with money protocols in a non-intimidating environment. In a way, it's a pretty cool learning and earning tool with a lot of aesthetic appeal. (And that's not talking about the nostalgia factor!)

It's always fun to explore just how creative creators can get in the crypto gaming space. So if you're looking for a game to dive into, this could be it. The game looks simple enough, but it's clever, and its rollout has been as smooth as eggs.

So, should we get started?

If you are looking for more crypto games, be sure to check out the 10 best NFT games to play in 2022!

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Valerio Puggioni

Valerio Puggioni

Valerio is a blockchain writer at HODL Content. He lives in Chiang Mai with his partner and dog, and spends his free time building mining rigs and studying Rust.

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