Three weeks of playing a play to earn game: this is my first impression about Upland


Upland is one of these games, this is how it is introduced on their official site:

  • The concept is similar to Monopoly
  • It is free to start
  • I’ve got a bonus by signing up using Brave referral link

It looks like a pyramidal game

Upland looks more like a pyramidal game than anything else. I know that many games are paid and we need to pay to get extra lives for example (like in Candy crush). But the difference here is the promise behind it. When I pay money to buy extra lives in Candy Crush, I know that I will just get extra lives. So I don’t expect anything other than extra lives. But with upland it is different, the game promises you to earn money: play to earn. So it is easier to encourage people to spend money because they expect to gain money in return.

It is free, but you will quickly need to pay to play

Until now and as I can see, it is more about pay to play than anything other.
Even if you have a welcome bonus in Upland, you will spend it very quickly. In general, you will get 4500UPX as a Welcome Bonus. And the average of properties is around 4000UPX (when you buy in a mid-class city).
Once you buy your first property, you will realize that you are very limited. You cannot buy more “properties” because you need UPX. You cannot sell your properties because you need to be an uplander. To become an uplander you need to have 10000UPX value. And so on …

I’m not sure you can earn even if you pay

It is very difficult to earn UPX and very easy to spend them. For example, if I take one random property in Chicago (511 S Kilbourne Avenue):

  • It costs 4488 UPX
  • The monthly earnings are 64.63UPX.
  • 5000UPX costs 4.99 USD
  • I don’t know how to convert back UPX to USD
  • It is a long-term investment (it needs many years to be profitable): not sure that the game could persist for years.
  • You need to find a buyer for the property just like in the real world.

It is so boring

As mentioned above, when you are still at the visitor status you don’t have many things to do. And it can last months if you don’t pay to play. In the first days, you have a daily bonus, so you can come back daily to earn it. But after 2 weeks you don’t have this bonus anymore. And you don’t have anything to do in the game. And it is sooo boring. And I don’t even know if uplander status allows people to do more things.

The interface is not user friendly

I play upland both on my phone and on my laptop. And on both the user interface is not beautiful (but this is a personal point of view). It is not user-friendly and it is buggy. For example on my laptop even if I check the “remember me” checkbox, I need to log in each time. And each login, I need to fill the “I am not a robot” captcha.

The referral program is indirectly “paid”

There is a referral program BUT both you and your referral need to pay money (yes real money) to get the referral bonus.

I’m not sure if it is clean money

This is a very personal point of view and it not related only to Upland but to NFT globally. I find that upland and many play to earn games are based on speculation and a kind of pyramidal or gambling model. I am not sure that it is ok to gain money by “selling nothing to others”. I am not sure that it is ethical and that it matches my values and my personality… I want to earn extra money, but I need to make clean money.

Photo by Chris Liverani on Unsplash

And now, what?

Today I am continuing to play, by visiting once a day to collect my «earning». I am trying also to not lose my visitor visa and properties by renewing my visa. But I am not sure how much time I’ll continue to do this. As I mentioned above, it is too boring and I don’t see any interest to play it until now. So let’s wait and see what will happen in the next weeks. Perhaps that Upland adds some features to make the game more attractive for poor people.



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IT working girl. Interested in many topics such as project management, self help and trading. Writes in French and English