The Sandbox announces Alpha metaverse event

Softbank-backed project’s token rises to record high

The past month has witnessed a marked acceleration in the push to develop virtual reality (VR) spaces in which users can interact with each other in computer-generated environments – otherwise known as so-called ‘metaverses’.

Just how much the ‘metaverse’ concept has been becoming increasingly popular, edging further and further into general public awareness, can be seen in many different areas – it includes everything from Facebook’s rebranding as Meta to Microsoft announcing plans to roll out its Mesh 3D avatar technology for its Microsoft Teams platform.

The Sandbox’s Alpha event

In the latest example of this push into all things meta and the ever-expanding metaverse, on Wednesday, virtual property and gaming firm The Sandbox announced its intention to open up a part of its own metaverse for the first time ever at the end of this month. 

From 13:00 (UTC) on Monday 29 November until Monday 20 December, a group of 5,000 users will have the opportunity to spend time across 18 different virtual experiences created by The Sandbox team.

For example, for one play-to-earn event – the 2,250 Alpha Pass non-fungible token (NFT) event – the tickets will be distributed to Sandbox account holders through daily social contests over the coming three weeks, while an additional 1,000 tickets will be raffled off to Sandbox Landowners. 

For those who are not yet into or aware of the huge virtual gaming phenomenon – worth $6.26bn in 2020, already up to $7.92bn in 2021, and expected to grow by 34% over the next seven years, according to Globe Newswire – The Sandbox is the name of a mobile phone and Microsoft Windows (MSFT) game that was developed by the Pixowl game studio and first released on 15 May 2012, then released for PC on Steam on 29 June 2015. The brand was acquired by Animoca Brands in 2018.

Animoca Brands – which itself has a valuation of around $2.2bn (£1.6bn, €1.9bn) – The Sandbox received $93m in Series B funding at the start of the month in a round led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund 2. 

SAND token and exclusive NFTs

Participants will have the opportunity to earn up to 1,000 SAND tokens and three exclusive NFTs. 

As of 12:45 (GMT) today, SAND was trading up by 36.46% at $3.45, having earlier set a new all-time high of $3.61. The token’s market capitalisation also stood 37% higher at $3bn. 

Decentraland, a close competitor in the virtual property space, stood 10.33% higher at $3.29 with a market capitalisation of $5.9bn. 

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