Crypto game players lose over S$100,000

ABOUT 20 police reports have been made against a Singaporean named as the chief marketing officer of a play-to-earn game that has allegedly cost local players more than S$100,000 (RM308,610) in lost cryptocurrency.

The Neko Inu game rode on the play-to-earn crypto gaming craze and was launched earlier this year, allowing players to earn USDT, which is a form of cryptocurrency.

Players needed to first purchase a virtual pet in USDT before they could start playing. They then had to perform tasks like feeding and caring for their pets every day to increase their value.

“What attracted me to the game was the 6% interest I can get for my pet every day. There isn’t much satisfaction from the game play,” said one player who wanted to be known only as KJ. “The pet can be traded or sold to cash out the USDT.”

If a player introduces more players to the game, they get referral incentives, like a ponzi scheme, added KJ, who put in USDT3,600, equivalent to S$4,900 (RM15,120) when he started playing in April.

But sometime last month, the game developer converted all USDT owned by players in the game to Neko$.

Players cried foul as Neko$ is not listed on any crypto exchange so they will not be able to cash out their earnings or assets.

Another player known only as Chen, 32, said: “Sometime in mid-November, we were not able to make any withdrawals. The game admin said the platform was hacked and the server was down due to high traffic.

“When the server was restored a few days later, we were shocked to find that our USDT was turned into Neko$. The conversion was one USDT to five Neko$.”

He filed a police report and joined a Neko Inu victims group chat with over 1,000 members.

Members shared material that they had learned about the company, including personal details of a Singaporean man named as the chief marketing officer on the game’s website.

The alleged losses range from a few hundred dollars to over S$37,000 (RM114,190) for one player. Only a small group of players reported their losses, totalling over S$100,000, to the police. — The Straits Times/ANN

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