What is Decentraland? (MANA)

The Beginner’s Guide

Decentraland (MANA) is software running on Ethereum that aims to incentivize a global network of users to operate a collaborative virtual world.

Decentraland users can buy and sell digital real estate while exploring, interacting and playing games in this virtual world. Over time, the platform has evolved to implement interactive apps, intra-world payments, and peer-to-peer communication for users.

Two different types of tokens manage operations on Decentraland.


  • LAND – A non-fungible token (NFT) used to define the ownership of land parcels representing digital real estate.
  • MANA – A cryptocurrency that facilitates purchases of LAND, as well as virtual goods and services used in Decentraland.

Changes to Decentraland software take effect through a series of blockchain-based smart links that allow participants with MANA to vote on policy updates, land auctions, and subsidies for new developments.

How does Decentraland work?

Decentraland app was created to track real estate parcels identified by LAND tokens.

The software leverages the Ethereum blockchain to track ownership of this digital land. And it requires users to keep their MANA token in an Ethereum wallet to interact with its ecosystem.

In addition, developers are free to innovate on the Decentraland platform by designing animations and interactions experienced in their virtual real estate.


Decentraland has many layered components built using Ethereum smart contracts.

The consensus layer maintains a ledger that tracks ownership of land parcels. Each parcel of LAND has a unique coordinate in the virtual world, an owner, and a reference to a description file that represents the content within the parcel.

The content layer controls what is in each packet. And it contains the various files needed to process them:

  • Content Files – referencing all static audio and visuals
  • Script Files – defining the placement and behavior of the referenced content
  • Interaction Definition – peer-to-peer interactions such as gesturing, voice chat, and messaging.

Finally, including the real-time layer, voice chat, and messaging. It facilitates social interactions within Decentraland through user avatars.

Marketplace and Builder

Outside of the gaming environment, the Decentraland team has released a marketplace with a drag and drop editor that users can access to build scenes.

The marketplace allows participants to manage and exchange LAND tokens priced in MANA. Crafting owners, packs, and other in-game items such as wearables and unique names. Or it can use the market to transfer.

All transactions are handled between Ethereum wallets and are therefore authenticated by the Ethereum network. And it is recorded on the blockchain.

Decentraland’s construction tools empower their owners to create a unique experience on their LAND plots. Interactive scenes are designed through the editing tool where developers can access customization libraries and payment apps.

Who created Decentraland?

The Decentraland Foundation was founded in 2015 by Esteban Ordano and Ariel Meilich.

The Decentraland team held an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) in 2017, raising 86,206 ether (about $26 million at the time) to fund its future operations. Holding 20% of the initial token supply, the Foundation holds the intellectual property rights. And maintains the Decentraland website.

Before launching its platform, Decentraland launched a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) to delegate the management of the project to its users. Additionally, the founding team allegedly destroyed the private key of the Decentraland smart contract that they controlled.

Why is MANA valuable?

MANA plays a vital role in the virtual world of Decentraland. It can be used to participate in the management of processes and software within the ecosystem.

The Decentraland team held an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) in 2017 raising 86,206 ether (about $26 million at the time) to fund its future operations. The Foundation, which retains 20% of the initial token supply, holds the intellectual property rights and maintains the Decentraland website.

Prior to launching its platform, Decentraland launched a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) to turn the management of the project over to its users. Further, the founding team claims the private key that controlled Decentraland’s smart contract has been destroyed.

What does Decentraland (MANA) do?

Decentraland is a decentralized virtual universe that gives its users full control over their land. Users can purchase land, in-game items, and artwork in this universe. Can develop applications on their land. And they can set all the rules themselves. The fact that users can set the rules themselves also allows them to profit from their land if they wish.

Decentraland’s technical manual outlines five uses for the platform:

  • Users can create their own application and 3D worlds.
  • By creating “neighborhoods”, users with similar interests can form organic communities.
  • Brands that want to benefit from user traffic can buy land and advertise.
  • Users can create NFTs that grant ownership rights and trade them on the Decentraland Marketplace.
  • Both online and offline communities can socialize in a much more interactive way.

The world of Decentraland is divided into more than 90 thousand plots in total, 256 m2 each. LAND, an ERC-721 token, represents the title deed to these lands.

MANA is used to purchase all items in the universe, including LAND. When users purchase LAND, the MANA they used to purchase is burned, meaning it is destroyed and removed from circulation. MANA is an ERC-20 token.

MANA also offers users the opportunity to join the Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO) of the platform. And it grants voting rights on policy changes, land auctions, and subsidies for new developments.

Users who want to participate in DAO management should convert their MANA to wrapped MANA (wMANA) and lock it to DAO. Each MANA represents one voting right.

Alongside MANA, LAND also offers users voting rights in the management protocol. But unlike MANA, they don’t need to be locked into the DAO, and each LAND is equal to two thousand votes.

Curious about Decentraland (MANA)

According to Decentraland’s official website, the platform is currently only accessible from desktop computers. The Decentraland Foundation recommends using Chrome or Firefox browsers for optimal performance.

Although the total supply of the platform’s utility token MANA was initially set at 2.8 billion. This supply has dwindled by more than 600 million over time due to the token being burned from LAND purchases.

As of May 27, 2021, MANA’s total supply is 2,194,363,127 and its circulating supply is 1,580,473,721. MANA reached its all-time high of $1.63 as of May 27, 2021, on April 17, 2021. Cryptocurrency can be stored in any ERC-20 compatible wallet.

How to buy MANA?

It is also possible to buy and sell on foreign exchanges such as MANA, Binance, Coinbase, Huobi, Kraken, KuCoin, Gate.io, OKEx and Crypto.com, as well as decentralized exchange Uniswap.

Click here to buy MANA and get 20% commission discount from Binance for Sincecoin readers!

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