On May 22, GameFi project Gala Games announced that it has partnered with Las Vegas poker streaming platform PokerGO to launch a new Web3 social poker game. Dubbed PokerGO Play, users will have the ability to enhance and upgrade their players in addition to redeeming real-world prizes. PokerGO is scheduled for beta testing in June, with the full release being available later this year.
In May 2022, PokerGO released its 1,326 Genesis nonfungible tokens (NFT) collection representing all of the possible starting hand combinations in Texas Hold’em. The collection has around 52 Ether (ETH) in cumulative volume traded with a floor price of 0.1 ETH. At the time, perks for NFT holders included but weren’t limited to “chances to win cash, memorabilia, and merchandise when their hand appears in winning moments.“ As part of the May 22 announcement, developers wrote:
“PokerGO Genesis NFT holders will receive beneficial status within the game, and the two sides plan to host special events inside the PokerGO Studio in Las Vegas.“
Gala is the developer behind a series of Ethereum-based play-to-earn blockchain games. On May 18, Gala developers announced that it had burned over 21 billion Gala (GALA) tokens worth approximately $640 million after the protocol’s v2 airdrop. Previously in Dec. 2021, the decentralized Ethereum online poker platform Virtue Gaming launched a digital poker casino utilizing cryptocurrencies and a play-to-earn model. The platform is backed by World Poker Tour champion and poker celebrity Phil Ivey.
In November 2022, the Gala Games token bridge was exploited via an infinite minting glitch that extracted an estimated $4.5 million from its liquidity pool. The project is currently undergoing a $28 million litigation with pNetwork, the cross-chain interoperability bridge used by Gala Games on the BNB Smart Chain, over the latter’s alleged involvement in the incident.