An in-depth analysis of Pegaxy’s economy

The Philippines has been one of the early adopters of the P2E horse racing game, Pegaxy. Since the game’s launch in October 2021, it has been one of the most popular crypto games globally. In Pegaxy, players will race NFT horses against one another.

Many players and crypto gaming guilds are looking into investing and entering the economy of Pegaxy. However, it is worth noting that tapping into any crypto game requires in-depth research and analysis to ensure that time and resources are not wasted.

Play It Forward DAO’s game researcher, Ludwig Ann Yepez dug deep into Pegaxy’s economy to give an in-depth analysis of the game. How is Pegaxy’s economy doing so far? Is it worth delving into? Read on to find out.

Economic Overview of Pegaxy

Figure 1 The economic overview of Pegaxy

The players in Pegaxy’s Economy are:

  • Guilds

Guilds are important to every NFT game, and this is given importance by the Pegaxy management as well. Each guild is given badges in the discord channel. Every badge represents the number of Pegas that they have.

Table 1 Badges acquired by guilds

Assessment: In January, there was a huge increase in the number of guilds that have joined. The number of Pegas that were added to the market also increased. This has slowed down in February, only experiencing 83% growth and finally in March, with only 5.6% growth.

  • Players

Players are individuals that manage their own Pegas but are not large enough to reach the guild status.

  • Renters/Scholars

The Pegaxy team has developed a relatively new feature in the NFT games space, which is renting. This lets individual Pega owners and guilds rent out their Pegas to people who cannot afford to buy their own Pegas but are interested in playing.

Assessment: Both PIF scholars and Pegaxy Discord (DC) members have reported an unfair renting system in the game that is available publicly due to the usage of bots. This poses a minor threat to the economy and is currently being fixed by the management.

In-game currencies (Tokens/NFTs)

Table 2.1 Data table of Pegaxy’s in-game currencies
Table 2.2 Data table of Pegaxy’s in-game currencies

Below are the charts of Pegaxy’s main tokens, VIS and PGX, chart of guilds’ growth rate, google trends (a measure of interest) and lastly volume that goes in the Pegaxy’s economy.

Figure 2 Pegaxy (PGX) to USD chart
Figure 3 Vigorous (VIS) to USD Chart
Figure 4 Number of Guilds Growth Rate
Figure 5 Pegaxy’s measure of interest based on Google Trends
Figure 6 Volume that goes into the Pegaxy’s economy

Here we can see that the Volume coming in the game is heavily correlated with the PGX and VIS values. And the volume is influenced by interest from Guilds and new players tracked by google searches. This shows how dependent the game’s value is on new players.

Game transactions/Activities

  • Racing

Racing is where players compete and earn VIS. Initially, twelve players compete in a race, but this was increased in March 2022 to fifteen to control the outflow of the VIS. The top three winners in the race are rewarded. Previously rarities did not affect the prizes, but this was changed in April 2022. Below are the prize pools based on rarity:

Pacer: 70 $VIS

  • 1st: 42 $VIS
  • 2nd: 18 $VIS
  • 3rd: 10 $VIS

Rare: 210 $VIS

  • 1st: 126 $VIS
  • 2nd: 53 $VIS
  • 3rd: 31 $VIS

Epic: 570 $VIS

  • 1st: 342 $VIS
  • 2nd: 142 $VIS
  • 3rd: 86 $VIS

Legendary: 1550 $VIS

  • 1st: 930 $VIS
  • 2nd: 388 $VIS
  • 3rd: 232 $VIS

Assessment: The change in the prize pool depending on the rarity of the Pega will create an increase in demand for rarer Pegas and a decrease in common Pegas. More than 90% of the Pegas are Pacers, which will negatively affect the players’ sentiment.

  • Tournaments

Tournaments are announced by the Pegaxy team, and the rewards are both VIS and PGX.

Assessment: This has little effect on the economy, but this generally helps promote the game.

Token/NFT management

  • Pegaxy Breeding

Pegaxy allows players to grow the number of Pegas that they have by breeding. The requirements for breeding are female & male Pegas and VIS and PGX. The costs are as follows:

Table 3 Cost of breeding Pegas

Assessment: Pegas is also sold in the marketplace. The chart below shows the difference between breeding costs and marketplace costs.

Figure 7 Difference between breeding and marketplace costs
Table 4 Average BC and MP from December 2021 to March 2022

On average, marketplace cost is 2x the breeding cost. This gives a lot of incentives for Pega holders to breed Pegas because not only are they cheaper, but they could also sell them at a profit in the marketplace. However, this is where the issue comes in.

Figure 8 Percentage of PGX against VIS

VIS can be earned from races, and breeders can collect enough VIS to breed Pegas. This means that they would only need to buy 30 PGX.

Based on March 2022 numbers, this is only $5, which is the actual value of breeding. This means that Pegas is extremely inflationary because a player is only required to bring in $5 to the economy to add another Pega.

  • Pega Fuse

Due to the oversupply of Pegas, the Pegaxy team has implemented a new governance rule to control this issue. Players are now allowed to combine their Pegas to improve their Rarity. Aside from the Pega fee, this also has a VIS and PGX cost.

  • 2 Pacers + 8,000 $VIS + 30 $PGX = 1 Rare
  • 2 Rares + 16,000 $VIS + 30 $PGX = 1 Epic
  • 2 Epics + 32,000 $VIS + 30 $PGX = 1 Legendary

Note: As mentioned in the Racing, the prize pool is larger for rarer types.

Assessment: This action by the team will burn Pegas as a lower rarity would have minimal rewards. However, it is important to consider the players’ sentiment as more than 90% of the Pegas in the market are in Pacers with the drastic change of returns on their assets. Not only does this require Pega, but they also have to spend money on VIS and PGX.

  • Liquidity Pool

VIS has a liquidity pool in the Kyber Swap. However, only 1% of the total VIS is placed here.

Figure 9 VIS liquidity pool in Kyber Swap
Table 5 Total of minted, burned, pooled and converted VIS

Note: Token holders would lock in their tokens if the liquidity pools have attractive token rewards (yield rewards). The more tokens are stored in the pool, the higher the stability of the token because there are fewer holders that would sell their token and would want to keep their token in the pool as it earns yield rewards.

Flow of Pegaxy’s Economy

Figure 10 The economic overview of Pegaxy

Inflows:

  • Pega purchase (USDT)
  • Pegaxy Breeding (PGX + VIS)
  • Pega Fusion (Pega + PGX + VIS)

Outflow:

  • Race (VIS)
  • Tournament (PGX + VIS)

The Pegaxy team was able to influence the players to burn their VIS rewards from the race by keeping the scholar’s rewards low and by using their VIS to breed more Pegas. This is evident in the Burn Rate as seen at the Apollo site.

Figure 11 VIS Mint vs Burn Ratio as of March 2022

87% of the VIS minted are re-invested for breeding. As mentioned earlier, 1% is placed in the liquidity pool. 12% is the outflow of VIS tokens which is generally healthy. However, this poses a different issue.

Figure 12

Money is just parked in Pegas. There is no burning mechanism for Pegas except the newly implemented Fusion. However, this just prolongs the pile-up of Pega. This means that if the number of breeding exceeds the number of interested new players, this will negatively affect the economy.

Forecasting

Table 6 Actual and Forecast numbers from December 2021 to July 2022

The dates from December 2021 to February 2022 are the actual numbers and the numbers forecasted with the assumption that the burn rate is constant at 87%. Naturally, as more Pegas are bred in a month, the next month would produce even more.

Thus, the more Pegas is in the market, the more newly invested money is required. As long as there are no new burning mechanisms, this poses trouble to the game.

The right side of the table shows the required volume or invested money on the game to keep the Pega price at either $150, $300, $500 or $1000. In March 2022, to keep the prices at $150, the game needs an invested amount of $20.48mil. Moreover, to reach $300, the invested amount should be $40.96mil. This will continue to increase in the next months because there will be more Breeding that will happen.

Axie Infinity Sales

Table 7 Axie Infinity sales from 2018 to 2022

The above table shows the sales of Axie Infinity, the most successful NFT game. At its peak in 2021, the average sales are $316mil. This means that for Pegaxy to be sustainable at the price of $300 and above, they have to be more popular and successful than Axie Infinity.

Governance

Figure 13 Pegaxy’s Roadmap
Table 8 Pegaxy’s Roadmap for Q1 to Q4 2022

This roadmap was released in early December 2022. The most crucial plan here is the First Stadium Sale since this will burn Pegas and might delay the oversupply. However, outside the roadmap, there are unannounced rules that the Pegaxy team has released to patch up the loopholes in their initial game rules.

Figure 14 Pegaxy’s implementations

Unplanned implementations:

  • Flippening
  • Pegaxy Fuse

This shows the Pegaxy team is aware of the oversupply of the Pegas. However, the new implementations are hurting the current players of the game because they devalue their current Pegas. They are also required to re-invest more money. This poses the risk of FUD for the existing players.

NFT P2E games need followers to survive. Would the current players be patient enough to wait for the actual burning mechanism of the game to sustain its economy, and will the team deliver?

Conclusion

Pegaxy has experienced fast growth due to its marketing success and has become one of the most popular P2E NFT games. However, its simple burning mechanism that only relies on breeding Pegas and reliance on the new purchases, along with the mistake of spurring Breeding in the Valentines Breeding Event, has increased the need for more capital.

Aside from facing the lack of new players, the Pegaxy team has implemented Pegaxy Fuse, resulting in negative sentiment toward its players. Currently, the game is in a difficult position and at risk of losing its current players. To survive, Pegaxy will need large investors with a rough estimate of $40 mil aggregated investment, based on the forecasting table.

Currently, Pegaxy has a shallow barrier to entry, which could potentially invite new investors. However, the team has miscalculated decisions like the Breeding events and Fusing that harmed the economy. They should have solid management of the economy even before starting the game, but that is not the case; the team has to adjust the rules at the player’s expense.

The only worth investing in this game is their brilliance in marketing, as they have grown the game’s popularity more than any other new NFT game that is currently running.

New NFT games are being implemented that have more sophisticated economies and better gameplay mechanics/graphics. Because of the game’s risk, it is more worthy of focusing on new games.

Author: Ludwig Ann Yepez, PIF DAO Game Researcher

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