Xaya – Decentralized Autonomous Gaming Universes

in originalworks •  last year  (edited)

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Gamer Alert: XAYA Main Sale is LIVE now. Read on to find details.  

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Introduction

Gaming is in our blood, well, at least most of ours! I still remember the casino type games back in my childhood days where we insert a coin to start playing. People who would have watched the movie “Wreck-It Ralph” would know what I mean and the fun of a gaming arcade. Then things evolved. Computers came and so did better graphics. I still remember playing “Need for Speed 2” on my computer whose graphics would be a trifle better than those in the gaming arcades. Then came “Need for Speed 3” and so on. Today I wonder what iteration of Need for Speed (NFS, as we called it back then) exists in the market but one thing I am sure about and that is the graphics improvement. Graphics, today, would make the gaming experience as real as possible.  

I can’t forget “Quake 2” or “Doom”, either. Getting on a blood trail killing aliens and getting to their warlord. It was fun! But as years passed, we came to the mobile world and despite work pressures, gaming continued. The most accessed by me on the mobile was “Clash of Clans” and “Bubble Quest”. It was just a way to unwind and gaming evolved to give us that conduit to unwind. What I mean is gaming evolved from Gaming Arcade to Personal Computers to Laptops (In early days laptops were not powerful enough to host games with high graphics requirement) to Mobiles today. Technology allows us an easier way to access games and continue enjoying!

So, that’s it then. That’s how far things evolve?  

Not really. 

Welcome The Blockchain World!

Technology evolution will continue and it is difficult to believe that gaming is not graced by the newest of technology known to man - the blockchain. Or has it been? The answer is, it has been, and that is thanks to Xaya! We will learn more about Xaya in a bit but before that, it would be pertinent for developers and gamers to understand how blockchain can help us undo the known issues with gaming so far.

Let’s get on with it then? 

Well, those of us have who have played mobile games would have definitely experienced “maintenance downtime” or “server inaccessibility”. Chances are you would have. In fact, few of the games I had mentioned had such down-times and the users were rewarded with gaming assets once that game came back online. This may not seem much but it does hamper user – experience and not to mention time-bound activities which cannot be completed. And of course, there are those situations where players attempt to buy or sell from/to other players, only to be cheated in the process. These are but few of the instances, which real-world gaming through centralized servers may find it difficult to handle. These are the precise concerns that blockchain can solve.

The issue with cheating during transactions can be dealt with a block being created only when buyer and seller both complete the transaction, otherwise, there is no block or transaction at all. Which means the buying and selling happen simultaneously for the transaction to complete. So, stealing 101, of delayed asset movement can be handled! Besides, blockchain based gaming can run decentralized and 24/7 giving gamers 100% uptime, every time and allowing them to experience the pleasure of gaming any time anywhere. 

These and many other advantages, Xaya brings to the gamers and game developers. So, now is a good time to get to know them.

Xaya - Gamers’ Paradise! 

Xaya is the perfect blend of gaming and blockchain fueled by the native Chi tokens. The Xaya platform serves both the game developer and the player. A developer can utilize the platform to build their own games and even create and trade their own currencies. These currencies, in turn, can be traded for Chi tokens or tokens of other games built on the platform.

The Xaya blockchain allows managing increasingly complex gaming worlds as well as securing owners’ virtual assets, thereby enabling its sharing and ownership. How do they do it?

The XAYA platform achieves this through the democratization of game development and deployment, allowing developers to bring their vision to life quickly with significantly reduced costs. It will provide a wealth of tools and a state-of-the-art infrastructure for game developers to build their own blockchain-based games. Furthermore, developers can fully leverage the XAYA technology to issue their own game currency that can be traded for ‘CHI’ (the reserve currency and “fuel” in the XAYA ecosystem - the X is pronounced ‘chi’ in the old Greek alphabet) or other XAYA game coins and assets.

A decentralized server-less gaming world, 24/7 autonomous solution, 100% uptime for participants, low investment for building gaming worlds by developers and blockchain managed transactions are just a few of the benefits of the Xaya platform. 

Take a look at this short video to know more about Xaya:

Although Xaya creates a new frontier in the blockchain world, it is not an unknown world. The team behind Xaya, had developed the Huntercoin experiment in 2013 which was supposed to run for one year, yet it continues to run even today. That talks about the team behind the platform.

How and why will the Huntercoin experience help the team execute on their vision perfectly?

As mentioned in the previous section, the team behind Xaya have already run a successful decentralized game campaign in the form of Huntercoin. They were formerly known as Chimaera and one of the very few experienced lots to execute the Xaya vision.  

Huntercoin started as a technical experiment as much as a way to test the market for such blockchain enabled games. At that point, the players were expected to be having at least some level of technical know-how and therefore, it was unpredictable as to how things would go. But the team surprised themselves, not only did the game reach 35,000 simultaneously controlled characters but also the fact that the game achieved close to USD 1 million in market capitalization in just a few weeks. That value peaked to USD 6.3 million by 2017 and remember, this was supposed to be an experiment to run for just a year but ended up running for four and still going strong.

There were quite a lot of learnings which came through and went into perfecting Xaya. Some of the firsts and learnings were:

  • Huntercoin was the world’s first game built completely on the blockchain 
  • It was also the world’s first decentralized multiplayer game giving a whole new meaning to massive 
  • It happened to be the first human mining permissible cryptocurrency 
  • Huntercoin had every node calculating the position and state of the game every block similar to what a smart contract in Ethereum does but way before the introduction of smart contracts 
  • Through Namecoin they pioneered Atomic Transactions which would be a necessity in Xaya for transactions between Chi and other gaming currencies 
  • Ability of the games to run serverless, trustless and being unstoppable

These are but some technical and business knowledge which will go into powering the Xaya Platform. Only Xaya will be a much bigger gaming and asset ownership decentralized platform!

What inherent need of the Gaming World is Xaya attempting to address?

Much like any invention finding its roots attempting to resolve a particular issue or challenge, Xaya too is a solution to the basic challenges that game developers and players face. What are they? They are enumerated below:

Xaya by its nature of being a blockchain solution makes game development much cheaper than any of the centralized solutions available today. This allows even an individual developer to test the waters and actually create their gaming worlds; not to mention reducing the time from game inception to release to market. In addition, developers have a canvass to create a virtually unimaginably complex world much to the delight of gamers.  

On the other hand, gamers get to experience incredibly complex gaming scenarios which may continue to expand virtually endlessly. Also, they can have a common storage solution for their in-game assets from across games. Which means no matter how many games they play within Xaya platform, they can manage their assets centrally across those games. What’s more, it opens up their assets for trade between games, gamers and the outside world!

Here is a look at the overall benefit to the Developers and Gamers:

Do we now see why security and fairness is an integral aspect to decentralized gaming, especially with in-game assets?

I do hope readers are getting a sense of the security and fairness desired on a decentralized platform from the discussion we have had so far. In fact, in blockchain gaming provably fair gameplay is unique to Xaya. As a comparison, other asset trading platforms require the developers to pre-create all items in a closed environment. This means they can be printed as many times as they want. So, the inherent value of the items falls with every printing. What I mean is that the more of an item is available the cheaper is its value. Taking an example from the car world, the plentifully available Volkswagen Polo will always be cheaper than a Bugatti Veyron which is about 400-500 cars per model. And the price difference is in orders of magnitude!

This example is what makes assets in Xaya’s world priceless. Xaya’s items have been acquired by provably fair methods and hence, will have a higher value. This also promotes the aspect of gamers not only benefitting from the platform’s native currency but also from the in-game assets. Further, security is not only limited to trading but also transactions which we will see as we get an overview of the platform. 

So, let’s see the platform.

A look at the platform 

While the Xaya platform brings together developers and makes the necessary tools available for them to create their own worlds, it also tries to manage certain challenges like scaling issues seen in most blockchain solution. Xaya team manages to handle this issue by looking at trustless off-chain scaling for games (Game Channels similar to side chains) and Ephemeral Timestamps. They would continue to invest in these areas thereby making the innovative solution even more robust as time progresses. 

Here’s an impression of how the Xaya Universe will look like:

When we speak about innovative solutions, there are a good number of them which Xaya has invested its time, money and effort into. So it is worthwhile speaking about them to get a sense of the robustness of the platform and the way it will operate.  

Some of the solutions are the proven ones like, for example, the cryptocurrency mining will be based on the Proof-of-Work (PoW) concept, while for gamer accounts and data (assets) Xaya team pulls their know-how from the Namecoin and Huntercoin experience. The player details are persisted with a decentralized name/value store built directly into the blockchain.  

In addition, there will be unique innovations which would be a first for the platform.

Atomic Transactions 

In a complex and diverse gaming world like Xaya it will be pertinent for easy exchange of Chi tokens with the gaming ones, as much as one gaming tokens with the others. The dependence on an Exchange for such transactions would not only be time-consuming but delaying things based on the latency and other challenges at the Exchange. The Xaya team based on their earlier pioneering attempt at Namecoin for building Atomic Transactions will be extending the same to the Xaya platform. Which means, all in-game currencies can transact with each other directly instead of going through Exchanges.

Game Channels

We mentioned about Game Channels earlier to deal with scaling and working of the platform at near real-time speed. This is achieved by taking the game moves between multiple players off-chain thereby allowing scalability. The same concept can also be used for “shards” of a global game world thereby allowing near real-time speed on the blockchain. 

Game Channels, allow players to continue a game in a trustless manner off-chain. This continues so long as there are no disputes arising. In an undisputed game, the prize money is distributed according to a 2 of 2 multi-signature transaction. If, however, players disagree then the dispute is resolved on-the-chain and the resulting cost is borne by the fraudulent player while the prize money is given to the honest player on the spot, in a sense reversing his or her cost of transaction.

Ephemeral Timestamps 

The Ephemeral Timestamp attempts to disincentivize a wrong-doer and incentivize an honest player should a dispute arise. It is brought about by a clever bringing together of the time-stamping property of the blockchain, Merkel-ized has commitments, amortized mining incentives, and fraud proofs, that ensure that the dispute resolution on the chain does not cause an honest player. So, in short, a dishonest player can only cause a minor disturbance whereas an honest player will be rewarded with the game’s prize on the spot.

Secure Transactions 

One of the statistics of the In-App purchase is that for every honest purchase there are 7.49 fraudulent ones. So the Xaya team had to work out ways to counter this if asset management was one of the core solutions presented by the platform. This was done rather ingeniously, by ensuring that when a transaction occurs, it has to be signed by both parties and only then will the transaction happen in a trustless manner. In other words, a transaction either takes place when both parties have signed or does not happen at all even if one party fails to sign.

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So, that’s a look at the platform covering the key aspects of the platform.

Key Features of the Xaya Platform

Having understood the Xaya platform so far, let’s summarize the key features. 

Partnerships with games such as Soccer Manager and Treat Fighter is helping Xaya become mainstream?

The success of a blockchain solution depends on the usage of its tokens and more importantly the transactions of those tokens (velocity).  For a gaming solution like Xaya, it is more so pertinent that the usage and velocity is created at the earliest. Gaming partners help in creating the usage and they transacting between themselves help create velocity. This is why the partnership with Soccer Manager and Treat Fighter is set to bring Xaya mainstream.  

As an example, Soccer Manager has 20 million downloads which means at least 20 million gamers vying to try the Xaya platform. Even 10% of the 20 million gamers is a good enough size to fire-up the Xaya economy. Thereafter, the visible success should attract organic growth and lead to a blazing economy supported by developers and gamers alike.

A bit about the Tokens

Use Cases

Case 1: Virtual Reality (VR) Gaming

Virtual Reality is data and resource intensive and hence multi-player VR gaming in the centralized gaming worlds is yet to take-off. But with Xaya in the picture, the equation changes. In fact, Xaya provides the perfect blend of Virtual Reality World creation with an awesome user experience. Xaya’s decentralized nature should allow managing the game state easily while the side chain ensures that the main blockchain is not clogged by tons of data generated by the VR world. Only at the time of dispute will it come to the main chain and can be resolved through the Ephemeral Timestamps. As such, multi-player, multi-world, VR based gaming becomes a reality!

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Case 2: Collectors’ Corner

While gaming would remain at the center of the Xaya world, there will be a small population of players-cum-collectors encouraged by the Asset Management piece of the Xaya platform. 

Carl is an avid player of multi-player car games. However, he is quite interested in collecting innovative car designs which he can win while playing. Many of the designs, Carl has not witnessed in the real world. Carl goes ahead and transacts to collect such cars or get it by winning in the games. What’s more, Carl actually takes the design to few of the known car manufacturers and finds few interested buyers. He then sells the design in exchange for some generous FIAT. In fact, Carl also shares some percentage of the money with the game designer. Carl need not share the money as the design (as an asset in the game world) was his after winning it. 

Not only is Carl enjoying his stay at the Xaya world but also making crypto-money and FIAT-money in the process!!

Xaya – Roadmap 

Let’s look at Xaya’s roadmap:

Summary 

Xaya brings forth an interesting time for both players and developers alike. While it is easy to pass Xaya as a gaming platform alone, which is no mean achievement either, but the fact is that it is a lot bigger than that. It is even an asset ownership and asset management platform. The asset is not just the crypto-currency but also in-game assets which will have real-life value. Can we imagine a scenario where we won some asset in 2018 and it is worth nearly USD 1 million in 2030? How does that sound? Interesting, I am sure.

While summing up a platform like Xaya may not do complete justice to it, but we still have to do it. Xaya has its genesis in one of the most interesting experiments of the 21st century, thereby becoming a platform which is decentralized, serverless, trustless and one of the most entertaining development to keep gamers and developers happy 24/7 unstoppably!!

XAYA Main 

Sale Access Sign up to earn 300,000 Chi Tokens in Rewards. The details can be found here. https://xaya.io/

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Here’s my Twitter Link:

https://twitter.com/DawsonSavio/status/1045866596218986496

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It is also recommended that readers understand more about Xaya through any of the following informative resources.

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This article is written in response to originalworks’ call on authors’ thoughts on Xaya. It can be read here.

Image Courtesy: Pixabay and Xaya Resources   

xayatwitter   

xaya2018 

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hi @oivas

Im not much into gaming industry so it's hard for me to comment this project. But I definetly think that you did a great job with your review. One can see huge effort you put into it.

All the best with the contest. Upvoted already

Yours
Piotr

Hey Piotr,

Am I happy to see you!!

Thanks for your feedback. Actually, what happened is the HF20 gave us more time, so I kept experimenting with line breakers and all. :)

That said, I love gaming and this project fell right in line. So, enjoyed it too!

Thanks for stopping by buddy!