When I first learned about eXode it wasn't much more than a concept, existing only in the head of its developer. They had published a Game Manifesto and I was kinda intrigued by what I've read there. They promised to combine two of my most beloved genres: Science Fiction and Trading Card Games. The most interesting aspect was that they did not indent to make it a PvP game but build it as a strictly PvE game that still should be competitive and offer rewards to its players. I initially only bought an Origin (which are like Starters in others TCGs) and some Booster Packs. The more I followed the games development the more it convinced me. As of now I have invested more than 2,500$ in the game and I'd to it again any time. To prove that I'm not making up these numbers, here you can see my account and all assets I own within the game.
Today I want to explain why I decided to invest that kind of money into a game and why it might be interesting to do so for others as well. This article is not going into too much detail on the actual gameplay, if you are interested to learn more about that though, you can find a lot of articles on most of the games aspects in my blog. In short words, eXode is a decision making game powered by the Hive blockchain. It's made up of a fast paced Evacuation and more laid back Colonization stage. The game is strongly focused on tradable cards that can enhance your playthrough in many ways.
So why did I invest so much money into eXode? There are two answers to that question and both are interwoven with each other. First of all, I really want to see the game made, all the concepts it features sound really great to me and I believe that this could be a game that I'll be spending many years with. Secondly though, I believe that I not only will be able to earn back the money I invested, but to also make quite a lot more with that investment. To really understand why I firmly believe in that, we need to first understand what assets you can actually own in the game.
As I already mentioned, eXode is a trading card game at core, so the main assets you will want to trade in the game are a) Booster Packs and b) Single Cards. Both options are solid investments in my opinion and I plan to hold on to both of these options. Let's talk about Booster Packs first!
An eXode Alpha Booster comes with 5 random cards from the Alpha Edition and one of the cards is guaranteed to be of at least rare or better quality. That's pretty standard for most Trading Card Games and mainstream games like Hearthstone do it exactly the same way. The key difference to these mainstream games is that you are not forced to open these boosters yourself, but are also able to list them on the games Starbase Market and trade it to other players. Each Booster pack is sold at 3$ in their shop right now. So why would it be a good idea to invest into Booster Packs?
Unlike most other digital trading card games that just keep selling their packs without limit, there's an actual print limit to the eXode Booster Packs. There will be a total of 200,000 Booster packs issued and once they are sold, no more Boosters will be available in the games store. So once that happened, the only way to acquire additional boosters will be to buy them from other players. But since other players will be buying those packs in order to open them, the total amount of unopened eXode Alpha packs will grow smaller and smaller over time. At the time of writing this article, 13,560 Booster packs have already been distributed:
Considering the fact that the game hasn't even really launched and there's only a small playable Early Alpha version available, that's quite the number. If the game manages to take off, it's only a matter of time until all available Booster Packs are sold and after that, it's only another matter of time until the price for unopened Boosters is going to increase. If you look around the Hive Blockchain, there's one other TCG in particular that's interesting to take into account when talking about out of print Boosters: Splinterlands. So far this is probably the most successful and influential blockchain trading card game there is. Their first edition, which was also called Alpha Edition (Trading Card Game developers seem to be a creative bunch after all), went out of print back in fall 2018. They were sold for 2$ back in the day and already sold at around 6$ at the end of 2019 - an increase of always 300% over the course of a year.
If you want some even more extreme examples take a look at what Booster Packs from early Magic the Gathering Editions sell for. Now obviously this can't be compared directly and we are talking about physical packs back from 1993 where nobody had any clue how successful trading card games would become one day. But still, it helps to illustrate how unopened Boosters can become really valuable the longer they are out of print. If eXode becomes a successful game, these packs are bound to be worth a lot more than what I've paid for them in the shop.
Single cards are another angle to the same topic. In eXode, there are 4 different kinds of rarities: Common - Rare - Epic - Legendary. Each card has a 1% chance to be of legendary quality when a booster pack is opened. So it's obvious that these very rare cards will be the best investment option of the lot. With 14 different Legendaries in the Alpha Edition and a total of 1,000,000 cards issued, there will be a total of about 714 copies per Legendary available. That means that not even 1,000 players will be able to own any one Legendary. It's obvious that these cards will become pretty rare really quick. Depending on how fast the game manages to grow, they might become a highly sought after asset even before all Booster packs are sold.
There is a slight issue with single card investments though. Not every Legendary is going to be as valuable as the rest. There are going to be better and worse cards and it's next to impossible to tell which cards are going to be the most valuable. So while there's potential for a high return, investing in cards is a little more risky. That's why I don't strongly focus on that aspect. I still try to have a copy of each card in the game, but I'm not actively trying to acquire additional copies of cards I already own. That way I'll mostly only hold the cards that I actually play (or could play) with, but in case I decide to sell I could still make quite a profit.
There's one more class of assets available in the game though and these are Contracts. Contracts are something only possible in the digital world. Once you've bought a Contract, you'll get a delivery of new cards from the contract every week - for life (of the game at least). So if you buy a contract, you will permanently receive new cards to play or trade with. Right now there are three Contracts available. Tom Settler's and Rekatron each cost 60$, The Syndicate Sponsorship costs 150$. The contracts are only available during the current pre-sale and any unsold copies of these contracts will be burned at the end of pre-sale (which is in about 2 weeks as of writing this).
This concept is what really intrigued me and where I invested most of my money. To evaluate the worth of these Contracts correctly, there are several points you need to understand. First of all, each Contract has its own unique loot-table. So all cards are exclusive to one of the Contracts and can't be found in another Contract or in the Alpha Edition Boosters. This really helps to separate the cards from the different sources, but it doesn't stop there. Each Contract is focused on one aspect of the game. Tome Settler's provides special Prefabs for Colonization, Rekatron provides individual weapons for your crew and the Syndicate Sponsorship is focused around the criminal Syndicate.
The cool thing is that none of these cards are needed to play the game, but they provide additional options for your game. With the Syndicate Sponsorship, you can focus on rebuilding a criminal cartel in your colony, with Tom Settler you can bring special buildings to your colony and so on. All of these cards are not better or worse than cards from Booster Packs, they simply provide different options. This is a very clever way to make sure that both the Booster Packs as well as the Contracts will retain their value long term. Unlike the Booster Packs, that have a fixed loot-table and will go out of print eventually, the loot-table for the Contracts will be expanded over time. This way there will always be something new to find there and they will always stay relevant.
By investing into Contracts, it should be possible to profit twice. The cards they drop each week can be traded for other cards or simply sold for profit on the market. At the same time, these Contracts will be really limited and will never be reprinted. So it's safe to assume that their value is going to increase over time as well. The Contracts are not permanently bound to your account, so if you want to, you can just stop receiving their cards and sell them on the market altogether.
Summing everything up, I'm really happy with the investment I've made and I'm in good hope that it will pay off eventually. That said, success is in no way guaranteed obviously. If eXode doesn't manage to take off, my money would be all but lost. That's why I consider my investment to be highly risky, no matter how convincing I find the game to be. If you choose to invest, you do so at your own risk and you may very much loose all your money in the process (and this is no financial advise, yadda yadda yadda).
Personally, I really enjoy the game and I really believe in its success. So if you want to try it yourself, all you need to start playing is an Origin which is sold at 10$ in their shop. If you join using my referral link, you will receive an additional 2 booster packs (which are sold at 3$) with your first order. I'd get two boosters for referring you as well. That's another reason why I'm convinced in the game - that's all there is to their referral program. There's no "gain 10% of all money spent" for life or such nonsense. You get a nice one time bonus and it's done, so they don't permanently burden themselves with additional expenses.
If you have any questions, please let me know in the comments and I'll be happy to answer them. As always - thank you all for reading and see you next time!