In 2018, the video game industry generated more than $130 billion in revenue, which is an increase of about 13 percent over the previous year.
There’s no doubt that video games are big business, but where is the industry headed? A few years ago, the media was reporting that the future of gaming was in augmented reality and other technological advances.
But, what if the real future of gaming is getting paid to play instead of the other way around?
Gaming and Crypto: The Future of Online Play
Observers often see the advent of emerging technology in the gaming community. The first foray into blockchain gaming was a little game called CryptoKitties. This simple concept was built on the Ethereum platform and allowed players to own, breed, and sell digital kittens. By the end of the kitty craze, some of these digital felines were worth hundreds of thousands of dollars in bitcoin and ether.
The buzz around CryptoKitties before the bubble burst centered on the fact that it allowed non-tech folks to get in on some of that sweet crypto cash that the early investors were drunk on. However, it did more than that.
The game was based on an open API environment that made the source code and addresses viewable to anyone, enabling developers to code a second layer experience on top of the game’s infrastructure.
This capability has since grown and evolved to include everything from the aforementioned online casinos to sportsbook betting. The reigning king of such games is Satoshi Dice, which is the most popular online betting game using this technology.
There are hundreds of games in development that incorporate crypto, but leave it to the creator of Bitcoin to lead the pack.
Satoshi’s Games: Enter Nakamoto
An introduction to Satoshi’s Games may be as curious and straightforward as Satoshi’s Place, hosted on the Bitcoin Lightning Network. This is a collaborative game modeled after The Reddit Place. The interface is comprised of millions of pixels, which can be purchased and altered by the owner. There’s no limit to how many times the pixels can be painted over. It’s an ongoing work-in-progress that demonstrates in a tangible way how blockchain technology works.
“BCraft” is a quest game that involves beating zombies on a desert isle, and “Low Mem Sky” is a space-based exploration game. However, the simplest of the free games is “The Legend of Satoshi.” This is a bitcoin mining game where players use their mouse to mine bitcoins after gathering the energy to do so.
“The Lair” is an old-school RPG game where gamers attack enemies with swords and block counter-attacks. The goal is to eventually get through the Dark Lord’s defenses, penetrate the Shearwater Keep, and defeat him on behalf of the Moonlight Empire.
Premium Satoshi Games
Of the two premium Satoshi Games currently available, the best is undoubtedly “Super Bro.” This game uses a backdrop of actual Super Mario One levels, but there’s a twist. Satoshi Nakamoto is kidnapped, and the only way to rescue him is to finish the level within 60 seconds without running into an enemy. All of the coins gathered during play are genuine Satoshis (the smallest unit of bitcoin).
The other two premium games are “Flappy Crypto,” an obstacle-avoidance game, and “Grid,” a puzzle game where you line up three or more crypto pieces, defeat enemies, and build shelters.
Level Up with the Lightning Network
Cryptocurrency may well revolutionize the gaming industry, and the Lightning Network is at the forefront of turning this combination into a reality. The network provides a layer on top of bitcoin’s blockchain, eventually becoming embedded. These protocols are implemented in user-generated channels and feature what’s called “trustless” transactions.
These are secured transactions conducted directly between two parties who are often unknown to each other. The agreements are performed in real-time and terminate when the agreed-upon time-frame ends, and the Lightning channel closes. There is no incentivizing necessary, so fees are low or non-existent.
Online Gaming Security Solutions
In 2014, an online Bitcoin exchange, Mt. Gox, disappeared from the Internet with the cryptocurrency of more than 800,000 depositors. The estimated value of the haul at today’s prices is more than $4.4 billion, a mind-boggling sum that remains unaccounted for. This incident put a serious focus on security.
Though various methods have been deployed, current recommendations revolve around virtual private network technology (VPN). This type of service creates an encrypted, private connection between you and the internet through which all your gaming data flows.
Using a VPN for gaming is no panacea. One should do their homework and choose a quality solution provider with enough servers to offer solid uptime, good speed, and that adheres to a “no logging” policy. There are shady players in this burgeoning industry but going online without a VPN is not recommended.
For those who love finance, gaming, and advanced technology, crypto gaming is a dream come true. Even those who aren’t on the cutting edge of gaming technology will appreciate the elegance of earning about the currency of the future while enjoying some retro game action thanks to Satoshi.
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