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How to play to earn on Splinterlands

Splinterlands is the next generation of collectible card games.

Disclaimer: This information should not be interpreted as an endorsement of cryptocurrency or any specific provider, service or offering. It is not a recommendation to trade.

What is Splinterlands?

Splinterlands is a play-to-earn card strategy game running on the Hive blockchain. The game was previously called Steem Monsters and is played as a one-on-one battle between teams of monsters. To start, players purchase a $10 Summoner’s Book, which unlocks their ability to complete daily quests, participate in season rewards and earn Dark Energy Crystals, the game’s token.

The Summoner’s book is the key to accessing the game’s play-to-earn features. Without it, you cannot participate in tournaments, trade in the market, or earn rewards from battling. During gameplay, players build collections of cards, each with different stats and abilities. These cards are then used to battle other players.

The game is free to try. So, players have a chance to try out its play-to-earn mechanics before committing their first $10.

splinterlands fig 1

What are Splinterlands NFTs?

NFTs are digital representations of objects in the real world, such as costumes, armour and land. NFTs represent unique objects and are not designed to be interchangeable. The growing interest in gaming metaverses is one popular use of NFTs. With respect to Splinterlands, NFTs are cards and lands. NFTs can be created on different blockchains, including Ethereum, Hive, Matic, xDao and Flow. Splinterlands NFTs exist on Hive, Ethereum, WAX and Tron.

How does play to earn work within Splinterlands?

Play to earn in Splinterlands works in the following ways:

  • Players can participate in tournaments and earn rewards for winning: You can earn Dark Energy Crystals (DEC) rewards each time you win a battle if you’re playing in ranked mode. If you win 2 games straight, you get bonus DECs.
  • Receiving gifts: You can be awarded gifts just by finishing your daily quest. Additionally, you get season rewards every 15 days when a season comes to an end. Other players can also send you gifts directly.
  • Buying, selling, and then renting packs and cards can give you an income.
  • Burning cards: You can burn cards for DEC rewards. Burning a card removes it from existence.

To unlock these play-to-earn features, you’ll need to purchase the $10 Summoner’s Spellbook.

What is a Splinterland guild?

Guilds are teams that combine forces to achieve better performance in battles and the earning of rewards. Splinterlands rewards optimisation. Players may capitalise on that and form guilds to increase their chances of winning DEC bonuses and discounts.


Hive is the blockchain on which Splinterlands is built. Users automatically get an account on this blockchain when they purchase the Spellbook. The blockchain supports decentralised apps, games and cryptocurrency wallets.


Players can convert some of their Splinterlands cards into ERC-721 tokens. From there, they can trade them on decentralised exchanges or NFT marketplaces like OpenSea. Here’s the process by which you can send your cards to Ethereum.


You can convert your DEC to Tron (TRX). To do so, you’ll need a Tron wallet. After setting up your wallet, link it to your Splinterlands account to transfer your DEC.


Splinterlands is also integrated with the World Wide Exchange (WAX) blockchain. Players can transfer their Splinterlands assets to WAX via the Splinterlands WAX bridge. From there, players can transfer assets to other players on WAX.

What are Dark Energy Crystals (DEC)?

Dark Energy Crystals are the main in-game currency for Splinterlands. Players can earn DEC after winning ranked battles. Only players who have upgraded their account by buying the Summoner’s Spellbook stand to earn DEC rewards.

Where can I buy DEC?

To buy DEC, you’ll need to exchange it with a cryptocurrency such as BTC or ETH in your wallet. You can grab some DEC from PancakeSwap, DODO on BSC, TronTrade, Cub DeFi, Tribal DEX and Uniswap.

What is Splintershards token (SPS)?

Splinterlands features the Splintershards token (SPS), a governance token through which players can participate in decision-making on the future of the platform. The platform introduced the token in July 2021. You can purchase the token on, LBank, BKEX, PancakeSwap and AOFEX.

How to play Splinterlands

You can access the Splinterlands game interface from the website’s main page. It’s also available on Android mobile devices. However, the mobile version does not have all the features of the web version.

splinteryard fig 2

Go to the “Play Now” button at the centre of the screen. Click on it to open an account or create one login in the dialogue box. The game is free to play. However, you might want to purchase the Summoner’s Spellbook to access play-to-earn capabilities. You can log in to the game via MetaMask, Venly, Wombat or a WAX cloud wallet or provide a username/password combination.

Once logged in, you’ll get to the game’s dashboard, which allows you to access the market, game events, missions, tools and help.

splinterlands fig 3

On the “How to Play” button, you can toggle between:

  • How to play – This shows you stats, abilities and strategies.
  • Practice battle – This allows you to fight without affecting your ranking.
  • Ranked – This allows you to rise higher in the leagues by winning battles.
  • Challenge – Invite a friend to battle without affecting your ranking.

Game mechanics

Splinterlands involves optimising your team’s stats and abilities to increase the chances of winning a battle. Since the actual battle executes automatically based on battle parameters, it’s important to know how to configure teams for high performance.


A card consists of a monster or summoner profile. Monsters do the actual fighting, while summoners use magic to call monsters from their habitats into battle. On the battlefield, you can have 1 summoner card and up to 6 monster cards.

The battlefield

The battlefield has 2 rows:

  • The front row – It’s closest to the enemy. Monsters attack opponents from this row unless they have special abilities.
  • The back row – This has back-up monsters. When the enemy kills a monster in the front row, the next-in-line back-row monster jumps to the front to fill the position.

Events/tournaments can be viewed from the main menu of the game. Each tournament has its own entry fees and winner prizes. Clicking on an event tab shows all its information, including the date of the event, competition rules, entry fees and rewards.


At the time of writing, the Summoner’s Spellbook is the only commodity on the shop menu. You can pay for the $10 book using a gift card/promo code, PayPal, credit cards or cryptocurrency.

On the marketplace menu, you’ll find card sales. These cards can be purchased on the Splinterlands market, PeakMonsters, CardAuctionz and MonsterMarket. You can get good offers on the secondary markets, especially if you find an auction. At CardAuctionz, you can get a 3.25% cash back for your card purchases.


You can purchase land on the lands tab in the shop menu. Land in Splinterlands varies in value depending on its geography, rarity and magic. With land, you can oversee construction projects on the parcels or use existing character cards as labour for production on the land. As of October 2021, all parcels had been sold out.

splinterlands fig 4


Potions are used to optimise pack openings. For instance, the alchemy potion doubles your chances of opening a gold foil card from a booster pack. Potions can be purchased on the Splinterlands marketplace. Each card in a pack must have a potion.


Dice are one of the 6 card editions in Splinterlands. The others are Alpha, Beta, Promo, Reward and Untamed. Dice can be purchased in the game as well as on external markets.

Splinterlands frequently asked questions

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