Korean-language game news website Gameinsight takes a look at how game developers are using blockchain.

Blockchain, the website notes, is fast becoming game developers’ next meal ticket as games are one of the few places where you can use cryptocurrency freely.

In particular, blockchain-based games allow users to retain ownership of game items even after they’ve quit playing. With existing games, users often sold their accounts or unloaded their ingame items for cash at trading websites. With blockchain, though, players can more easily and safely make transactions with their items. Or, since they own those items, they can use them in other games.

And as gamers are used to using virtual currencies, it’s easier for them to make the transition to cryptocurrency.

In Korea, the game developer most aggressive in adopting blockchain has been Kakao. Several of Korea’s leading game developers have joined the Governance Council of Kakao’s blockchain platform Klaytn. More game developers are taking part as blockchain app (BApp) partners as well.

Kakao plans to expand the blockchain ecosystem by adding its “Klip” cryptocurrency wallet to its ubiquitous KakaoTalk chatting app and hopes to make the move by the end of the year.

Bryllite, the blockchain company of Korean game company HanbitSoft, has signed a deal with Thai online game operator Asiasoft to apply blockchain technology to HanbitSoft’s dance game Audition. Gamers would receive tokens based on their login time and completed missions.

Game developer Neowiz, meanwhile, is developing blockchain games through its subsidiary Neowiz Play Studio. Last December, it released a blockchain-based version of its mobile game Solitaire Duel using EOS.

Though there’s little doubt as to the innovative potential of blockchain in gaming, work still needs to be done on making blockchain-based games fun. Gameinsight notes that attention to the “game” aspect of blockchain-based games needs to accompany the technological development if these games are to take off.

Also in the Korea blockchain space…

(By Richard Meyer, CoinDesk, Sept. 16)

The U.S. Department of the Treasury has added three entities to its sanctions list for alleged cyber crimes, including the theft of cryptocurrencies. The groups are accused of being behind the theft of $571 million worth of cryptos from five exchanges in Asia in 2017 and 2018. The U.S. government believes the three groups are controlled by North Korea.

(By Alexander Aryan, Coinnounce, Sept. 13)

Speaking of North Korea, Pyongyang will be hosting its second cryptocurrency and blockchain conference on Feb. 24-25. U.S. citizens will be able to attend, digital devices are allowed and internet access is available. And according to one tweet, North Koreans are allowed to own cryptocurrencies.

(By Steve Kaaru, CoinGeek, Sept. 12)

Union Mobile has launched ELYNET, a blockchain platform that will allow users to “freely use data communication services without the drawbacks of existing wireless carriers such as roaming fees and contracts,” according to the press release.

(By Kim Eun-jin, BusinessKorea, Sept. 16)

As we noted last week, smartphone manufacturers are rolling out phones with blockchain services, including Samsung, HTC and LG.