Asset-based tokens are relatively straightforward: they are tokens backed by or represent an asset for which tokens can be redeemed. These assets can be physical, such as company equity, property, or art; virtual, such as digital goods; or crypto-graphic assets, such as Cryptokitties. The token itself rarely has unique properties and it is intended primarily to enable seamless transfer of ownership.
Seamless transfer of ownership can be an under-appreciated feature. Transferring asset ownership today often requires several different transactions on different physical and digital ledgers, maintained by different entities, to confirm the transfer has taken place. Having a distributed ledger represent an official, legal, material, and potentially financial transaction in one could open up new possibilities in asset trading. Cryptokitties, Tether, and Aspen Coin are examples of asset-backed tokens.