Fungible Times: The Role of Yield Guild Games in the Metaverse Economy
In this podcast, Beryl Li of Yield Guild Games joins Christine Kim and Sarah Guo of Fungible Times to discuss how YGG is making a mark in the Metaverse economy.
The Fungible Times podcast is a self-proclaimed “Web3 maxi show” that tackles topics such as wallets, NFTs, stablecoins and play-to-earn. Hosts Christine Kim and Sarah Guo are from Greylock, a venture capital firm that actively invests in Web3 companies. Through Greylock, they have recently invested in theportal.to, a Metaverse space built on Solana that you can access through your internet browser. Now, they share everything about Web3 and the Metaverse through hosting Fungible Times.
In this episode, Sarah and Christine are joined by Beryl Li, co-founder of Yield Guild Games (YGG). The three discuss the services that YGG provides to its guild members, such as lending out digital assets for players to use and earn with. Sarah then steers the discussion into the specifics, asking Beryl how, why and where YGG operates, not only in the real world, but in the Metaverse as well.
The episode helps listeners understand Web3’s play-to-earn economy and the importance of gaming guilds like YGG in these economies. Beryl also talks about how regional subDAOs like IndiGG work, especially as fully independent branches of the YGG DAO.
The following is an excerpt from the Fungible Times podcast. Listen to the full episode here.
Sarah (23:48): Can you talk about how you were pioneers, but now there are other gaming guilds, there’s BreederDAO, Metaverse real estate developers, and different people participating in this gaming economy — just what do you think is interesting here? Are you collaborating with anybody else?
Beryl (24:08): Axie Infinity has shown us that this is an economy within the Metaverse. We see the success of Axie based on the various roles it has developed and established over time. Like you’ve mentioned, there are people who have become brokers in the Metaverse just because they are buying and selling land. First, these people become players, then they become managers, then they start graduating within the ladder — they become a bigger manager, which is similar to a mini guild. So there’s a proliferation of various roles within this gaming economy.
What’s really interesting is seeing interoperability of these assets across various games, and tying all these economies in one big Metaverse. It’s the same concept as globalization in today’s world. It’s something that I look forward to seeing in the Metaverse.
Sarah (25:28): That’s a really interesting perspective to take on it. If I believe that there’s going to be this new enabled economy, and there’s sub-economies such as Axie within it, then in an economy, I would want lots of participants — from entry-level individuals who eventually become scholars to managers, mega managers, guilds or other economic participants. They make the economy more robust. They are people that can trade, coordinate, and provide liquidity to the ecosystem.
I think one of the most standout attributes of YGG is its super strong community. You’re obviously really community-oriented. What has been your overall approach to building and interacting with the community?
Beryl (26:38): It’s really important to develop tools. Right now, we heavily rely on Discord channels. We want to expand what we have on Discord. We are able to do that through subDAOs. These are regional managers or country managers that focus on a particular region. For example, we have IndiGG — these are run by our partners, the guys from Polygon — which is independent, because it is also structured as a DAO. It has its own token, and it has its own tokenomics as well to be able to incentivize communities within India. Their focus is acquiring, helping and onboarding community members within the provinces of India.
We, as YGG, were able to focus on asset acquisition and being able to match these assets with the communities within India. That is through the subDAO model.
Sarah (27:54): That’s a really interesting coordination idea. You guys are amongst the largest DAOs in the world now. I think one criticism has been, “How can you coordinate this many people without more centralized structured leadership?” Taking this step of separating out components of communities that have different incentives and being clear about that is really interesting innovation.
Since you’ve mentioned IndiGG, how are you guys thinking about geographic expansion? Obviously, you’ve gone beyond the Philippines. Maybe you can talk to us about where you have expanded already and where you want to go.
Beryl (28:40): You can think of Yield Guild Games as a guild of guilds where we support other DAOs or other guilds. There are subDAOs that are formed within YGG. For example, we already have YGG SEA, IndiGG, and Ola GG for LATAM.
We’ve started to expand in the MENA region as well as Africa. We’re now working with one of our early investors to establish a South Asia subDAO as well. Within those subDAOs, we are going to be seeing a number of managers, and each of these managers will have their own group of scholars. There’s going to be a trickle effect, and it's through establishing all these bubbles around YGG, where we could trust these subDAOs to be independent and make their own decisions. We are here to guide and advise these subDAOs and subguilds. As an example, we’ve partnered with BreederDAO and Merit Circle. We are here to help them through our learnings and lend some of our assets.
We are unable to control everything, the entire network as YGG, on its own. We want to remain lean as a team and focus on our assets and build technology. So we need to slowly rely on our regional managers and country managers. That’s the concept of subDAOs and subguilds that we are forming right now at Yield Guild Games.
You can listen to the full discussion on the Fungible Times YouTube channel.