Experience onchain gaming, where blockchain redefines ownership and transparency, creating an immersive gaming revolution.
Ever heard of Gods Unchained? How about Illuvium? Two popular games with different rules and incentives, but vaguely similar to others you might’ve played in the past. Gods Unchained is a digital trading card game where players strategically build a 30-card deck, trying to align with a god, while destroying their opponent in order to win. Illuvium is built upon the premise of exploring a 3D world searching for and trying to capture Illuvials, battling opponents along the way while also trying to win. These two objectives parallel games many are already familiar with, except for the fact that players own and lose their personal digital assets.
It isn’t necessarily the game storyline, or the choice of graphics and how you win that set apart onchain games from other games, it’s the underlying game mechanics that directly impact the player. With onchain games, the stakes feel more familiar, closer to you personally than traditional games. Put simply, onchain gaming refers to the integration of blockchain technology into video games. Traditional games are typically centralized, with all game data stored on a central server controlled by the game developers. In contrast, onchain games, where the game transactions and digital assets are stored on the blockchain, leverage the blockchain's decentralized nature to enhance aspects like ownership, security, and in-game assets.
Advantages of Onchain Gaming
- Open Source Code: Because of its public nature, developers have the opportunity to repurpose onchain game logic to build a new variation on top of the existing game or create an entirely new game. This is important because it not only gives developers a light lift entry point into creating their own games, but allows for the possibility of improving the existing game software as more and more people continue to develop it.
- True Ownership: Players now have real ownership of their in-game assets and currency secured on the blockchain, perpetuating the desire to play, win, and contribute to game at play. When you own a portion of whats in play, you have much higher conviction around your decisions in game, leading to a more competitive and honest gameplay.
- Transparency: All transactions and changes within the game are publicly recorded on the blockchain, ensuring transparency and immutability, as well as the preserving of all game archives for public record. The real value of this lies in the fact that there is a very low chance of foul play and tampering of records to take place.
- Portability: Onchain games often allow for asset or player portability between different games, enabling a player to use their assets or digital persona across various gaming platforms. It’s a pretty cool concept to be able to carry your prized possessions or the player you love so much from one game to another, personalizing your gameplay wherever you are.
Why IPFS for Onchain Gaming?
If one of the main reasons onchain gaming was created is for complete decentralization and the ability to own and control in-game assets, it makes sense that IPFS would align perfectly as the underlying technology used for content storage. Why?
- Pinata’s IPFS Dedicated Gateways can speed up gameplay and load times. The loading of in game assets onchain can be notoriously slow to load due to blockchain bottlenecks, but with the use of IPFS and the distribution of assets and current gameplay across many nodes, load time can be significantly reduced due to proximity to players and many gateways. The pure speed of dedicated gateways alone is also a key factor in improving load times.
- Records are immutable and persistent. When game records and assets are stored on IPFS, they are assigned a unique CID, a content identifier that points exactly to that specific file. This CID allows players to develop a sense of trust because it provides a reference code to a file you know has been unchanged. The ability to point directly to something that has been preserved over time, entirely unchanged, again, allows a gamer to know they aren’t being scammed or looking at faulty records. With everything out in the open, there’s no place for cheaters and scammers to work their way into the game you’re playing.
As we move into 2024, the onchain gaming environment will continue to push boundaries. If you’re a developer experimenting with building onchain games, Pinata’s IPFS Dedicated Gateways can be incredibly useful in enhancing load times and storage capabilities for your game.
If you’re a gamer looking to dabble in a new world, Pinata is building an onchain game called Cosmic Cowboys. Get early access to the beta and enter the world of NPCs, AI, and space cowboys.
December 19, 2023
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