Shiba Inu (SHIB 7.23%) investors needed something to get them fired up again. You'd think that big news about the forthcoming Shiba Inu metaverse would do it. But it didn't.

Last week, the Shiba Inu development team made an important announcement about plans for the Shiba Inu metaverse, and the meme coin barely moved.

However, Ethereum's (ETH 0.62%) native ETH token has risen in the following days. Coincidence?

Maybe, but maybe not. Actually, Ethereum is poised to be a big winner with Shiba Inu's metaverse. Here's why.

A surprise in the SHIB metaverse

A post in the Shiba Inu ecosystem blog on March 30 introduced "SHIB: The Metaverse." Several details of the forthcoming metaverse were revealed, notably including some about the digital real estate that will be available for purchase.

Shiba Inu's metaverse will feature 100,595 plots of land. In the early days of development, 36,431 plots will be unlocked in four Districts: Growth, Defense, Technology, and Currencies. There will also be four tiers of land, each having a different price tag.

Now for the surprise: Participants won't buy land in the Shiba Inu metaverse with SHIB tokens. They won't use the newer Shiba Inu ecosystem LEASH or BONE tokens to purchase land, either. 

Instead, all the plots of land must be purchased with Ether tokens. The lowest tier, called "Silver Fur," will cost 0.2 ETH. The third "Gold Tail" tier will cost 0.3 ETH. The second "Platinum Paw" tier will cost 0.5 ETH. And the top "Diamond Teeth" tier will cost 1 ETH.

Three dice spelling "ETH" with fingers on a fourth die showing a green up arrow on one side and red down arrow on another side.

Image source: Getty Images.

Why Ether?

The Shiba Inu development team anticipated that the decision to go with Ether would cause some consternation. They provided a reason for the move, stating, "As we will use the collected funds to pay for the Metaverse development, [the] team have [sic] decided to use a neutral coin that can be sold into stablecoins in order to pay all the sources."

That wasn't the only explanation, though. The team added: "Using our Ecosystem Tokens is a risk, as we would need to dump our own tokens [sic] price cashing them! And that's far away from our plans."

This still left some wondering why in the world the Shiba Inu metaverse won't use Shiba Inu tokens as the primary currency. But if SHIB, LEASH, or BONE won't be used, Ether is the logical alternative.

Shiba Inu is built on top of the Ethereum blockchain (as are many other cryptocurrencies). Using Ether means that the Shiba Inu metaverse won't have to introduce a completely foreign token into its ecosystem. 

If the Shiba Inu metaverse really takes off, Ethereum could be a big winner. Anyone seeking to purchase land in the metaverse will first need to buy Ether tokens. A significant level of buying would create upward pressure that could push Ether's price higher.

More surprises on the way

The post on the ShibaSwap blog also said, "2022 is aimed to be a year full of surprises." It then mentioned a couple of developments -- the launch of the Shibarium layer-2 solution and a Shiba Inu ecosystem stablecoin.

Those rollouts really aren't surprises since Shiba Inu supporters are already anticipating both of them. However, the Shiba Inu developers added, "Stay tuned to what will happen next, we're ready to shock everyone with new features and ways to implant $SHIB in areas that are set to bring sustained new heights to the asset."

The best surprise of all for Shiba Inu investors would be one that lights a fire beneath the meme coin. But it seems that investors will indeed have to "stay tuned."