From Web2 to Web3: best practices for converting your community

19 January 2023


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Since its creation in 2019, Neopolis – the mobile game that transforms the real world into a giant game board – has attracted over 3 million players in Europe. With the launch of Neoland, the Web3 version of the game, Neopolis has implemented a new strategy to encourage user adoption. Co-founder Ben Kaltenbaek gives us his top tips.

Ever since you played Monopoly, you’ve dreamed of buying the Eiffel Tower, the Champs Élysées or the Louvre Museum? With Neopolis, your dream (almost) becomes reality.

Neopolis was born of the following idea: video games are tomorrow’s social platform. Ben Kaltenbaek, Lucas Odion and Roland Lamidieu, three long-time friends, decided to join forces to realize their ambitions. Together, they created the Revolt Games video game studio and came up with Neopolis, a free-to-play Web2 game that transforms the real world into a giant Monopoly board, that transforms the real world into a giant Monopoly board . In 2019, the first version of Neopolis appears on the playstore.

In 2021, Neopolis is testing a new playground: the team is embarking on Web3 with Neoland, to offer users an ever more powerful interactive experience. In Neoland, players can acquire plots of land ( LandPasses) and create buy-sell transactions with other players using the in-game currency, NeoCoin.

But the Neopolis community has grown up with Web2, and many haven’t yet mastered Web3. Neoland’s challenge lies in one question: how do you get them to adopt the new Web3 gaming experiences?

Step 1 – Know, involve and care for your community ❣️

Since the company was founded in 2019, the founders of Neopolis and Neoland have had one conviction: to create an engaged community, you have to take care of its members. In a few figures, Neopolis and Neoland federate 3 million players, including 200,000 active players and 4,000 virtual owners present in five European countries. On social networks, the community can be found mainly on Discord (50 K), TikTok (110 K) and Twitter (15 K).

Among the 17 employees, four are dedicated to community management on the various channels: in-game, on Discord and other social networks. To support them in their day-to-day work, they can count on a core group of highly committed players: true ambassadors for Neopolis, they are responsible for welcoming new members, answering questions and settling any conflicts that may arise.

Some draw on their IRL experience to moderate the game. “One of our in-game moderators is a prison guard in real life. He’s one of our most loyal players!” Ben tells us, amused. The co-founder keeps a keen eye on the members of his community, and has spotted the potential in some of them. Two players are now part of the team as salaried employees. Fun fact: they’re not even of age yet, but we can deduce that their future looks bright!

Step 2 – Preparing to launch Neoland with your community 💫

To encourage adoption, the Neoland project is being tested with several samples of players. Trials start with a panel of 10 of the most committed community members, then expand to 200 players. The idea was a hit, and the launch of Neoland was officially announced to all players on Discord in 2021.

While the Web2 community is gaining momentum, everything remains to be done on Web3. However, the team set itself a target of selling 10,000 lands within the first 6 months. To reach this target, the team devised a launch strategy based on four key actions:

Find partners and create collaborations: associations, platforms, content creators, Neoland will seek out all the Web3 players who influence the field to promote the game.

Unite around a highlight: the Neoquest, a 4-day tournament organized entirely on Discord. The best players win Neoland-related prizes.

Animate the community with treasure hunts and competitions :

“During a competition, we offered the community the chance to win a free pizza. We had pizzas delivered to the 4 corners of the world”, explains Ben.

Create a pre-sale of lands 24 hours before opening to the general public, accessible only through virtual tokens distributed to the most active members of the community. A secondary market is created between members of the community: tokens are sold between players, and their value rises to as much as $70 each.

On launch day, the gamble paid off: the first 10,000 lands sold for $25 each within minutes . French plots sold out in seven minutes, watch in hand. Immediately after acquiring the lands, a parallel market is created between the players. The average price of a plot is three times higher than the public price!

Step 3 – Involving the community in game development 🕹️

The Neoland community is extremely involved, and almost all developments are subject to user validation.
There are several ways to cultivate this state of mind and strengthen the bond between players and designers. Here are a few examples:

→ Numerous discussion channels are created on Discord for players to exchange with each other and the team.

→ Every month, community members can vote for the next feature to be developed.

→ Dedicated channels on Discord and Slack allow members to recommend improvements.

→ In December 2022, 600 people were able to test the new update free of charge and give feedback to the development team.

A little over a year after its launch, Ben and the whole team have succeeded in their challenge: Neopolis fans have become Neoland fans, and Web3 enthusiasts have fully embraced the product. The community is naturally committed and supportive of the team.

As for the future of Neopolis, there are certainly many projects to come, but the facts bear out the initial vision of the three founders: the virtual world has no frontiers, and great stories can be written, even through the screen.

Selena Miniscalco


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