Mythical Games has announced the early access release of NFL Rivals, an officially-licensed mobile game with NFTs on both Apple’s iOS App Store and Google’s Android Play Store. NFL Rivals is a fantasy football game in which players act as team general managers and try to win games against opposing teams. The game offers a free-to-play mode, but users will also be able to buy, sell, and trade individual game characters (NFL players) as NFTs via Mythical’s online marketplace. Each character has an assigned rarity level and different strengths and weaknesses. NFT prices currently range from under $8 for a “common” player to tens of thousands of dollars for a “legendary” character NFT. The game’s characters and teams are fully licensed, allowing players to build out rosters with their favorite players.

Mythical Games’ CEO John Linden told Decrypt that NFL Rivals brought in 150,000 players during its beta, and the broader Mythical economy saw $1.6 million worth of NFT sales in just one day. The company plans to cast a wider net with NFL Rivals via its public debut, predicting it will have more than 10 million players this year. With Mythical’s other planned titles and a Blankos Block Party expansion all planned for this year, the studio believes it could ultimately see 40-50 million players across all its games.

To handle such mainstream-sized gaming audiences, Mythical has decided to move its game platform from its own private Ethereum-compatible network to Polkadot. Mythical Games will have its own “parachain” on Polkadot, which it calls the “Mythos Superchain.” Linden believes that Polkadot can handle the company’s predicted large number of players, citing its shared security model as a key factor. Parity Technologies, the crypto firm driving Polkadot development, is thrilled with the decision, stating that it “unlocks unprecedented interoperability for Web3 gaming.”

Linden believes that Mythical’s close working relationship with Apple and Google is helping to destigmatize Web3 games and make the process easier for future developers in the space. “There’s sports collectibility and the idea of digital sports collectibility,” he added. “Obviously, Dapper [Labs] did some stuff a couple of years ago, but we think there’s so much room to grow.”