If the Third World War Happens in Metaverse, will People be Hurt?
Metaverse represents our digital future, does this mean we will be battling in a virtual space?
Remember World Wars 1 and 2? Well, no one can forget those dark years of human history that are thoroughly mentioned in our history books. During Moscow’s ongoing massive military operation against Ukraine, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov warned of a third world war’s “nuclear and devastating” consequences. There has been a time when people predicted the third world war and raised fear among others. But these days, the two buzz words (metaverse and war) may sound completely unrelated but if you think about it deeper, they are intertwined more than it initially appears. The metaverse is a hypothetical iteration of the Internet as a single, universal and immersive virtual world that is facilitated by the use of virtual reality and augmented reality headsets. In colloquial use, a metaverse is a network of 3D virtual worlds focused on social connection. There are economics, social ranks, land and asset owners, and many other things. Players themselves actually build the game from universal blocks, called voxels. So, is it possible that a third world war will take place in the metaverse? If yes, then will people be hurt?
Metaverse sounds too similar to the real world, doesn’t it? To players, the metaverse is a social space where they can compete, while socializing with their friends. It has been dubbed “a global living room for millions of gamers”. GameFi, as you know, is a play-to-earn gaming destination that combines video gaming, blockchain technology, and decentralized finance (DeFi). All the things that metaverse is trying to replicate exist in the real world which in my view no game can beat in terms of graphics and entertainment. In actual words, the metaverse is an escape from reality that we don’t feel included in or just simply cannot bear. Before we move further with the third world war taking place in the metaverse, let’s take a look at the disadvantages of wars:
The obvious casualties – An inevitable part of war is of course the loss of life. Sadly, lots of lives that get lost are innocent people who get caught up in the situation and of course, many opponents of war (and advocates of world peace) tend to only see that side of war.
Hatred and propaganda – War is often used to justify hatred and discrimination against certain groups, which is obviously not good. The opportunity to rile people up against a certain group of people also gives rise to propaganda, as we’ve seen in World War II, the Cold War, the Vietnam War, and the current Mid-East conflicts.
Environmental damage – Modern warfare has been known to cause damage to the environment. One notable example is the damage done to the oilfields of Kuwait during the Gulf War of the early ’90s. Before the Gulf War, Kuwait’s dessert was healthy, despite centuries of nomadic grazing, and years of oil development. In the 60s and 70s, America
sprayed herbicides over the forests of Vietnam in an attempt to deprive guerrilla fighters of any cover the trees provided them with. This resulted in numerous toxins sinking into the soil and sea, many plants dying, many animals siring deformed offspring, and numerous other dreadful consequences.
There are numerous other disadvantages of war, and it should be avoided as much as possible. But what will happen if the war is taking place in the Metaverse?
In traditional warfare, two nations go to war over something tangible and valuable. Play-to-earn games have economic value in the Metaverse as well as in the real world. This new way of gaming could replace physical wars where nations can battle in a virtual environment.
As a result, this could force real loss onto players when they could “die” and lose all their cryptocurrencies and NFT assets. If something valuable can be taken away, then there is something worth fighting for.
What could go wrong?
Implementing games as a replacement for physical warfare is without negative consequences. This could alter the balance of global superpowers. This means that a nation’s status would no longer be determined by its resources and manpower, but by the gaming abilities of its people. Today’s professional esports players could be tomorrow’s cyber soldiers.
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