At the dawn of GameFi, when games were just beginning to integrate into Web 3, most used an economic model with a token. The motivation for different projects varied. In some cases, the token was convenient: easy value transfer, instant liquidity for the player, and all the benefits of Web 3. In other cases, the token served as a means of speculation, where the goal was to make money on traders and inexperienced "noobs", while the game and players created the illusion of a lively project and the usefulness of the token.
Both faced the problem of directly linking in-game value to a speculative instrument. Using a single token in the model led to a proportional increase in in-game value and a high entry barrier during a pump, whether natural or artificial. But this was not the biggest problem. The rollback was even worse: the dump led to a significant loss of assets by players and disappointment in the project's payback and future. The massive outflow of players led to the death of the project. The lifespan of such projects ranged from 2 to 12 months, and profits came directly from the losses of players and traders due to speculation.
Subsequent projects employed more complex economic models, introducing 2 or more tokens, where one was used for in-game value, and one or several other tokens were used for exchange speculation. Such models were more "resilient", but ultimately led to the same result as with a single token, only slightly increasing the project's lifespan. This is due to the fact that the speculative token, although not entirely, still affects the value of in-game assets. It would be difficult to completely disconnect the token from the project, as traders targeting the project must believe in the profitability of their deals. To do this, it is necessary to create a demand for the token among players while inflating hype and attracting new "hamster" investors. However, there are usually not enough ingame assets to create the necessary market pressure, leading to pump-and-dump schemes, creating extreme volatility and instability in the value of in-game assets, increasingly triggering a "death spiral".