The potential of video games + blockchain technology
The video game industry has never stopped growing since its inception, we have all seen in recent years, how the capabilities to create photorealistic graphics in virtual worlds only get better as time goes by, this happens because technology, in general, is capable of advancing so fast that even innovations from 5 years ago can today look like something very archaic and in some cases obsolete.
It is clear that as consumers have access to constantly improved hardware, there are more computational resources available to run better video games, we have reached such a level of sophistication that the current complexity of some of the major video game projects can be breathtaking, and it will only continue to get even better until we reach a point when there will be virtually no difference between what we see on the virtual world and what we see on the real world.
But photorealistic graphics aren’t the only reason why this particular industry continues to grow, the proliferation of online multiplayer video games thanks to fast internet connections that allow for rapid interactions in complex digital worlds, is certainly another important factor that helps with the constant expansion of this particular industry. It is no coincidence that the most successful video games are those that allow the gamers to play with their online friends, and these digital interactions can serve as a fuel to encourage even more usage and consumption.
On the other hand, blockchain can easily be considered as a new disruptive technology that offers an innovative method to handle all sort of digital information in a way that wasn’t possible before. With no central authority and being completely immutable, this technology can offer its users an unprecedented level of not only security but also versatility. Blockchain technology can be implemented through different means and with different goals, in order to find out the best and most effective way to adapt it to a particular scenario, which is why this industry has grown so much, its applications and potential are simply remarkable.
In this specific case, the enjoyable experience gamers have when they embark themselves on a journey inside an online world with their friends, can be improved even further by leveraging the capabilities of blockchain technology regarding the handling of this type of digital entertainment.
Even though these 2 industries have been gaining a lot of strength as well as mainstream recognition, there are, however, a few issues that are currently affecting them.
Issues currently affecting the gaming and blockchain industries
Issues in the blockchain industry
Given its decentralized nature, one of the most common issues that requires a lot of planning and innovation to solve, consists in being capable to properly scale, so the blockchain doesn’t come to a halt when massive adoption starts to take place and a lot of transactions are being done simultaneously.
This is especially challenging when dealing with blockchain based video games. Due to the huge amount of constant interactions that need to be correctly registered in the blockchain, there will always be the risk of disturbing the experience if the blockchain becomes unable to handle everything that is happening in the game. Therefore, properly scaling is extremely important, especially if people are interacting with a video game through a particular blockchain.
Gaming industry: gamers issues
People who decide to invest a little bit of money and time to play video games usually do it simply to have some fun time on their own, or with their online friends, there are a few exception of individuals who can monetize their gaming activities by streaming their matches or becoming part of a professional team where they can compete for very valuable real-life prizes against other professional teams, however, it is clear the majority of the people is unable to monetize their gaming time, so it basically is a kind of investment, they invest money and time and they expect to receive entertainment in return.
Besides, there is also the issue of getting full advantage of the items they manage to get in the video games, items that can be really valuable thanks to the difficulty in obtaining them. In most cases, the gamers don’t have an easy method to transfer the value of these items to other universes, which means this value is kind of isolated, leaving gamers feeling like they don’t actually own their virtual items, and once the gamer decides to put his time on another video game, this value is unable to be transferred. Thus, it is obviously there is a need to have a digital economy where gamers can trade their digital and valuable items, and easily transfer this value to another video game in the form of new items, or to simply cash out this value and spend it on real-life products.
Gaming industry: developers issues
Developing video games is a very difficult task, especially in those cases where the game offers the option of having extensive multiplayer matches with people from all over the world. The whole process can become very time and resource consuming, and small studies might find themselves unable to deliver their product on time, or in some cases, unable to deliver the video game without game-breaking bugs that prevent gamers from having a good time.
Hence, there is a need in the market, particularly in indie studios, for a platform that can allow them to manage their developing activities in a more effective and cost-efficient way, and also facilitate the deployment process once the video game is done and ready to receive gamers from all over the world.
Another important challenge that today’s developers are facing, is figuring out the best method of monetization for their content, and given the proliferation of free apps and games in the mobile industry, successful studios must implement sophisticated monetizing strategies to attract users and turn them into their consumers. The use of ads to monetize free users is very common, but in some occasions, an excess of ads clearly disturbs the gaming experience, consequently, a new monetizing strategy that encourages gamers into consuming more on a constant basis would be extremely good for everyone involved given the current circumstances.
Every single one of the issues mentioned, the blockchain scaling issues, the gamers being unable to properly enjoy and take advantage of the value they earn while playing video games, and the difficulties when it comes to creating excellent video games with online multiplayer capabilities and effective monetizing strategies, all of these issues are addressed by a project called Xaya.
What is Xaya and what are its features?
Xaya is a platform designed to revolutionize the gaming industry by leveraging capabilities that are only possible now thanks to the emergence of blockchain technology in recent years. They are planning to achieve this by making the development of video games much easier thanks to polished tools that developers will have at their disposition once they decide to use the Xaya platform.
With Xaya, releasing video games into the market is going to become less complicated and the same can be said about having 24/7 hosting of vast virtual worlds. Xaya will have a Developers Hub providing every information and tools a developer needs, like “SDK/API, documentation, sample code” as well as “pre-built libraries and utilities to automatically generate Unity Assets and Unreal Blueprints based on the developer’s requirements”. | Source
However, blockchain technology also allows for the creation of a new monetizing strategy that can be perfectly adapted to the gaming world.
Tokenization of games items and a multi-game economy
The first thing to understand about how the Xaya’s economy is going to work, is by grasping the potential uses of the CHI token, which is the one fueling every single transaction that happens in the Xaya’s blockchain, these uses are the following:
The third point in the image above that indicates the possibility of purchasing game assets, is the one with the biggest implications for both developers and gamers.
As we can see, one of the most versatile aspects of blockchain technology is that it allows for the tokenization of literally everything there is. In this case, since this particular platform is focused on the gaming industry, developers will now have a new way to monetize their games by creating a new token that will serve as the in-game currency and people will be able to trade it with the CHI token, this will allow gamers to trade any kind of digital item for the particular game’s token, and eventually they could even cash out those tokens and use it to purchase anything in the real world, resulting in a multi-game economy where every important item could eventually be traded by a completely different item in another video game.
This is extremely important because people who play video games tend to not just play one of them, but rather several video games, always adopting new ones and gradually forgetting about old ones, and under the Xaya platform, they could have the value they manage to gather in one video game in the form of special items or resources, and move this value into another video game in the form of equally valuable items, this wasn’t possible before, because it is this particular implementation of blockchain technology that allows for a multi-game economy to actually exist.
For gamers, the implications of this are groundbreaking, now it would be possible to receive real monetary rewards for the achievements and difficult items people receive when they play video games, a disruptive feature such as this one will certainly change how people look at video games from now on, the perception will change from simply an unproductive way to entertain themselves, to a now potentially productive experience, when besides having fun, there is the now unprecedented opportunity of earning valuable digital assets, which is a feature called “Human Mining”.
And for developers, this could be a new way of monetizing their video games, because they could implement a mechanism in which they receive a % of the value each gamer manages to earn while playing the game.
Previous experiment with Huntercoin
It is important to notice that the Xaya team has a lot of experience in blockchain based gaming, in 2013 they released Huntercoin which was the first experiment that allowed players to earn a certain cryptocurrency for playing the game, effectively becoming the first project where gamers received monetary reward for their gaming activity and for the results they achieved inside the game.
Given the success of this experiment, the extensive experience they have in the industry, and all of the data they managed to extract from their Huntercoin experiment, data that is now extremely useful in improving as much as possible the final platform, it is fair to say that this team is surely the one better prepared to take on a task as ambitious as this one. Revolutionizing the gaming industry by developing a platform specifically designed for it is something very remarkable, even more when taking into account that in the process, the team had to create some in-house features that didn’t exist before.
Xaya’s technical features to guarantee security and fairness
In order to properly adapt blockchain technology to the gaming industry, the team at Xaya was able to develop a few unique innovations that are the cornerstone of this platform regarding security and fairness:
- Atomic transactions Source: this feature is what will allow for all types of transactions to take place. Transactions such as “trading of game items, game-specific currencies and whole game accounts for CHI.” Source
- Game channels Source: for scaling purposes, game channels are simply a way for games to first register players moves off the blockchain and then settle a final result in the blockchain, this will avoid suffering from a congested network.
- Ephemeral timestamps Source: this feature is for solving any type of dispute that might arise in a “game channel”. The Xaya team was able to find a solution for this issue “by mixing the time-stamping property of a blockchain, Merkle-ized hash commitments, amortised mining incentives, and fraud proofs in a clever way” Source. A more technical and extensive information can be found on this official message.
These features are extremely important for the long-term viability of the platform, since the video games are going to literally have a lot of valuable items, and players are going to own those items while having the opportunity to sell/buy them, this ecosystem can be seen as a place where financial transactions are going to be happening all the time, and when monetary value is involved, the platform must necessarily be as secure as possible, to avoid fraudulent actions and abusive behavior and to guarantee basic aspects like allowing users to have safe trading and real ownership of their digital assets. Therefore, developing sophisticated security protocols like the ones explained before, is one of the most important elements, and it is something that certainly must be done with the highest possible standards. Information about the team behind these innovations can be found in this website.
Xaya’s current partnerships
The team at Xaya has been moving fast in offering to already established brands the opportunity to enjoy the benefits of using this platform, such as the case with the very popular video game called Soccer Manager.
As it names implies, this video game is about managing a soccer team, developing the best strategies and taking the most appropriate decisions to become the most successful team of all. Thanks to Xaya, gamers will now truly own their valuable assets like digital soccer players and even digital stadiums, which will certainly increase the competitiveness among its users, the better they are at managing their digital team, the better their results will be and the more monetary rewards they will receive.
Given the amount of loyal users for this particular video game, and the popularity of soccer in general, having an important partnership such as this one can be of big help when getting the Xaya’s brand into the public eye, to start gradually becoming better known in the gaming community.
There is not a better way to introduce the Xaya’s platform and features than having partnerships with interesting video games, which takes us to another important partner, this time the video game is called Treat Fighter, and it is one of those cute and fun looking video games that always have a chance in becoming extremely popular because of its game mechanisms and cool aspect.
These partnerships, as well as other ones showed in the picture below, are going to be of great help in proving the success of blockchain based gaming.
Implications of Xaya’s scaling solutions to VR technology
The immersive experience that virtual reality offers for people who want to feel like if they are on another world is something very attractive for a lot of gaming enthusiasts, there might be nothing more exciting for a gamer than the sensation of being inside his favorite video game.
With Xaya, video games immersion could be more realistic than ever because as mentioned before, gamer’s actions inside the virtual world would now earn them items that will hold real value, and thanks to the possibility that Xaya offers that allows users to trade items and all type of digital assets for tokens and therefore, for fiat money, then it will make players much more responsible and effective with everything they do inside the game.
Besides, thanks to the protocols that the team at Xaya developed to ensure the blockchain can scale properly to not disturb the game experience, this will also allow for the existence of massive virtual realities operating in a decentralized matter 24/7 with no downtime, which means the stability and the safety of the digital assets won’t depend on the reliability of a single party, but rather on the decentralized Xaya’s blockchain and its security protocols and features that have already been tested as explained before with the Huntercoin experiment.
Due to these reasons, Xaya could make VR gaming much better than what it currently is, it would change the way players interact with the digital worlds as well as making them act in a more well-thought way, and the virtual worlds themselves will be better handled thanks to decentralization.
Use cases and applications
Use case #1: exchanging valuable items between different video games
Jon is a young guy who tends to spend a few hours a week having fun with his video games, lately he has been spending a lot of time with a medieval RPG (role-playing game), and he has managed to gather important items like a good armor and excellent swords to attack enemies, however, after a few months he already completed the game and wants to start playing a multiplayer FPS (first person shooter) game.
He knows that there are advanced weapons in the FPS but he would need to work a lot in order to get them, so since he knows he has valuable items in the medieval game, he decides to sell those items and exchange them for the respective token, and later he goes and buys advanced weapons from a user in the second game who decided to sell his own items.
This way, Jon was able to transfer the value he earned in his first video game, to the second game, thanks to the Xaya’s economy and the use of its cryptocurrency.
Use case #2: real monetary rewards based on the achievements in a video game
Harry is a person who always dreamed about earning a living by simply playing video games and having fun doing it. He has been trying in becoming a member of a professional gaming team but so far he hasn’t managed it, the same can be said about building a following around his streaming activities. Even though he has been trying, he hasn’t found a way to monetize his gaming time.
Luckily, he realizes that the Xaya’s platform allows its users to have complete control over the valuable and tradeable items that they can earn while playing any game using this blockchain, he decides to try out the platform and finds himself amazed when he realizes he can indeed, collect items through the game, and then sell those items to any interested party through the use of the corresponding token.
Therefore, Harry starts to improve his gaming technique to optimize as much as possible his gaming time, improve his results while playing the game, and little by little he does increase his monetary rewards as well.
Thanks to the “human mining” feature in the Xaya’s blockchain, he now has a way to monetize his gaming activity that he didn’t have before.
Use case #3: a small indie studio finishing and deploying their video game thanks to Xaya
Tom is the owner of a new and little indie studio, the gaming industry is very competitive and the development process can get quite expensive, which is why they have been struggling to develop and release their new game into the market.
When researching a way that could help them to successfully continue with the development of their video game, they discover the Xaya’s platform. They are excited when knowing this platforms helps developers with a polished Xaya SDK, toolkit and developer hub, and they realize this could be the solution to their problems, besides, deploying their video game into this blockchain seems like a more straightforward process, more cost-effective, and much more ambitious given the future potential of blockchain-based gaming.
Thus, they decided to adopt this platform and are able to properly continue with the development of their project.
Allocation of funds
The gaming industry has a lot of potential especially because the more realistic and social the games are, the more interested the people will be, and since modern computers and video game consoles are getting extremely powerful, this allows for beautiful and complex virtual worlds to be created and explored.
On the other hand, blockchain technology can improve a lot of aspects in the already successful gaming industry, in this case, Xaya is capable of providing developers with several tools that will make the development work much easier than before, and the same applies when it comes to hosting virtual worlds, with Xaya, developers will have a lot of needed help so they can work much more efficiently.
Blockchain also allows the existence of a new monetization strategy that can bring benefits to both developers and gamers, by integrating digital assets in video games with a cryptocurrency, a new economy can emerge, allowing for gamers to monetize their gaming activity based on the items they can earn while gaming, and on the other hand developers can also monetize their work by implementing a mechanism in which they can receive a little % of the value each gamer manages to earn, this provides a win-win situation where both parties (developers and gamers) are encouraged to do their best possible work.
More information can be found in the following websites:
- Xaya Website
- Xaya WhitePaper
- Xaya Medium
- Xaya Bitcointalk
- Xaya Reddit
- Xaya Facebook
- Xaya Twitter
- Xaya Linkedin