The Oasis Twitter Spaces session on February 7 was an amazing opportunity to learn about the recent growth and future potential of the Web3 gaming industry. Two veterans of the crypto gaming industry – @cryptoblades & @samuraiverse – joined Oasis to chat about everything Web3 gaming. For anyone who missed the conversation, this article provides a summary of the conversation using paraphrases of the guests' own words. If you prefer to listen to the recording, find it here.
Here’s a summary of the conversation that has been slightly modified for readability and length.
Differences between Web3 and Traditional Gaming
Yannic (Samurai Legends): So, one of the things I usually use to explain to a mainstream gamer, what Web3 can offer to blockchain gaming is ownership. And this is a manifest throughout GameFi with the fact that you can own NFTs in your wallet and have a say where it goes and nobody can touch it. That is a game changing element towards gaming and something that I think we'll still need to see its success in mainstream.
People will need to understand what the value and benefits of this are. But yeah, this is for me the primary game changer as words, how games can revolutionize in the future.
Philip (Crypto Blades): What I would add from the perspective of a game development studio or just game development in general is because all of the smart chain logic lives in a decentralized place, much of what on public non-privacy based blockchains, you can iterate on what other people have been able to produce extremely rapidly. And we've seen that with the many flavors of decentralized exchanges.
We've seen it with the many flavors of decentralized games.
I think that it rapidly impacts the creation and iteration of ideas in a way that we haven't seen since really on open ports. It's basically like open source plus plus because you can take it and run with it. So, I think that that's another huge element and one of the reasons why we've seen such rapid growth in the space due to all of the very rapid prototyping and extensions of all the existing game file applications.
Difficulties of Building Games in Web3
Philip (Crypto Blades): The biggest one now kind of comes from the perspective of game development, but all of the tooling is still so immature. And it's obviously one of the reasons why we're working on making all of our building trouble for that very reason, because we see there's a big need and also a big opportunity for us as a project that's been around for quite a while, at least with respect to blockchain in which two years, kind of the 20 years. But we still struggle with the proper development tooling.
The things that you would come to expect in regular software development or game development, just don't exist in blockchain. And so it takes much longer and it's much more expensive to make things that are far simpler or far less developed than in traditional gaming. So, I think as we start to see those gaps be filled we'll also start to see a lot more competition with the traditional gaming field as well.
What the Guests are Building Now
Yannic (Samurai Legends): “We're building a game called Samurai Legends. And the best comparison is we're basically trying to build EVE Online, on blockchain technology in feudal Japan. That is what we are creating. And for those that do not know EVE online. It's a sci-fi MMORPG mass multiplayer Online Role Playing Game. But our game, somewhat alleged it's focused on the grand strategy elements. For instance, creating armies, conquering lands, etc. And this also includes like ownable NFTs like units as well as equipment, lands, those are integral elements of the game.
There are only very few MMORPG , real MMORPG. One of them is like a reference EVE Online where everybody really is on one server. And why is that? Because it's really difficult to get that amount of players and that amount of data on one server layer. On blockchain technology, this is the opposite actually. You can create an environment on a single instance and that is a real benefit and that's something that has not yet been explored in any gaming project thus far to a large scale. So yeah, it really gives us the opportunity to create a virtual nation where everybody really is in the same environment experiencing the same world. So yeah, that's what we are building.
To clarify, it is player versus player, meaning that there is a combat game that we are making, actually already our alpha testing right now with a small team of testers. Which is basically an instance that if two war bands or two small armies collide, they come into this PVP instance which is off-chain, meaning that the game is played, you got a player versus player, you have to place your units strategically and try to outsmart the opponent. And when you win, you get their loots, you take away their treasure essentially and you can move on and try to harass other war bands, essentially. So yeah, just to clarify, war bands consist of units and these units can, for instance, be samurais, can be archers, ninjas, etc. We have, I think, about 12 units in total, 12 different unit types.”
Philip (Crypto Blades): “Even from day one with Crypto Blades, our goal was to create an entirely on-chain game, partly because by doing so, we allow every aspect of the game and ecosystem to benefit from the owner ability and transferability and earning potential of the crypto ecosystem. So because all of our characters and items live on-chain. All of those can be traded, all of those can be used for earning in various ways. And how that has developed from the very first version of Crypto Blades, which was released in May of 2021, where it was basically just by an NFT, click on combat and then that combat was awarded a certain amount of our native skill token.
Since then, it's grown to a very large ecosystem and very large player base across 9 different chains where we have 60,000 monthly active users across all of our chains. And users can do a variety of things now. For example, we have a completely on-chain questing system, which is open to going out and discovering any kind of NFT sort of a find and retrieve quest. We also have built our own technology for utilizing and moving and transferring all of the NFTs.
So for example, our own NFT bridge, our own NFT marketplace, our own token bridge. And that's actually been probably one of the keys to our success because our players don't have to wonder where to go to do certain things. They can just do it all within this one ecosystem, which sort of transitions into what we're offering now, which is any game that just wants to build the gamified experience of which there's a lot of really cool, just like what Samurai Legends was just describing that they can work on building that amazing experience and then have all of the NFT and token and reward systems and mobility all handled to the point where our end goal is that the players don't even have to know or realize that their assets are living on the blockchain, they can just benefit from earning.
They can benefit from transferring, they can benefit from all being on one server, which I think was a really cool thing that the SamuraI legends team was describing. So that's really kind of our end goal is our players in front row seats to this ecosystem and have helped us build it along the way and benefited from it. And now they get to see that be utilized across 40, 50 or the next 100 blockchain games that build on top of the technology that we built.”
Why Confidentiality Matters for Gaming
Matthew (Samurai Legends): I can't let the player know what decision I'm going to make before I do it, right?
In terms of integration with Sapphire, two large game aspects that we're looking at doing. Like Yannic said, we want everybody on the same game server. We want everyone's position on the world map to be somehow recorded on the blockchain. And so one of the things we want to use Sapphire for is to create a sort of fog of war aspect. So instead of being able to say, I can see that the Yannic’s Army is over there, so I'm going to go a different route. I won't be able to see anyone until I'm within so many squares of them. I'm within a certain range and then I get access to who's around me.
Especially since we're a strategy game, having several layers of confidentiality really add to the strategy.
We need certain things to be unpredictable like that or to be secret or strategic in that way. I might then scout forward to scout ahead and they might get beaten up. But at least I know my main army isn't going to run into that. So Fog of War is a big aspect of them. Also in our grand strategy, there's a lot of political strategy, a lot of political game play, and so we have clans. And so we want all clan activity to be done in Sapphire on a privacy chain so that you don't know what they're voting on, how they're voting, what decisions they're making, so that you only, when you see them in game taking over your province. Yeah, then you know that that's what they decided. But we want decisions like that to happen privately and like you said permissioned data. So everyone in the clan knows who's in there, everyone knows what the vote is. Maybe some votes are private, so you only see the result. But we'd like the ability for them to work secretly for only when they finally put their plans into action, then it's made public.
Philip (Crypto Blades): One of the really cool things that has come to mind from both the game side and the platform side is there's always been these limitations and what we can do because everything is readable and open. And it would be great to have some aspects such as even something as simple as a lottery where users can have assurance that the smart contract that's deployed is handling the lottery in a fair way. But then additionally, when you sort of even take it back a step further, we're already on eight different chains and we're planning on going on to more chains, but we can essentially offload all of the privacy focus features directly to Sapphire for all of the chains and then offer as a platform this entire privacy focus set of tools for all of the game projects that end up integrating our tool set.
So, I think looking at it from the perspective too of this isn't just for projects that are integrating on Sapphire itself. You can even look at it from our ecosystem and all the other ecosystems and protocols that are going to integrate that you can think of it like them having an entirely separate feature set that's enabled by the privacy layer and that this can be integrated cross chain across many protocols all over the blockchain ecosystem. That's sort of the really cool sort of bigger picture that comes to mind for me.
Confidentiality with Gaming NFTs
Yannic (Samurai Legends): In designing our game, we specifically try to address everything with the standard that we had. So, if we were to build the PVP game on-chain this will be a necessity of some sort. I also see various use cases for other games regarding confidentiality of NFT metadata. But yeah, in our current design, I don't see a use case real quick.
Matthew (Samurai Legends): So, there's a couple layers here. There's not kind of an exact – this army will be that army. PVP combat has a lot of strategy to it and so you might try to figure out another player's strategy based on what units they have, what abilities those units have. And so as long as we can keep those secret, so you could see with the fog of war you see another war band, a small army coming towards you. But you don't know exactly what units are in that warp. You just know that there's five. You don't know exactly which ones. Or even if you can see them, maybe you see there's three Samurai and two archers, but you don't know which abilities they have and things like that.
So, I do think there's space for that, but also, as we're saying, there's certain things that will happen within this mini game server to play one versus one combat that will in itself, allow for us to not show our hands when we're fighting.
Using the Oasis Privacy Layer in Web3 Games
Yannic (Samurai Legends): Great question. Without reiterating everything, I think it is good to emphasize especially the clan mechanic we are building which basically needs a Privacy Layer. So it's a clan as a DAO and voting takes place and voting means that certain decisions are automatically implemented or are communicated. And this Privacy Layer is a sheer necessity especially if you want everything on chain.
So yeah, just want to emphasize that it's something that we need and we're really happy to learn Oasis offers this. But further looking at for instance the fog of war elements. There are many things that are difficult when building a blockchain game. Many things you have to try to engineer it in a more challenging way than you would if you were to make a mainstream game.
I mentioned the aspect that you don't need a server and that you can build a world amongst single instance on the blockchain is really a benefit that we want to tap on. And yeah, you need that Privacy Layer in order to keep confidential where other players are. So it is a necessity and also enables us to build something with relative ease, if that makes sense. So we are very excited to learn that we can build on Sapphire while not having the need to migrate. So it's only a big bonus.
Philip (Crypto Blades): I was kind of touching on this a little bit before, but I think it's great that there isn't this need, for example, to have everything residing in this Privacy Layer and to instead allow a lot of the benefits of having various aspects of blockchain be open. Another great example because I very, very much am excited about the open nature for builders. And one of the really cool things that we've experienced in Crypto Blades is we've had so many tools written and developed by our community members varying levels of skill and everybody can basically just get started by pulling some data, creating different tools for people to have a better experience within our ecosystem.
I bring it up a lot, but a great example of this in Web2 is roadblocks where even my son, who's nine, has created his own roadblocks game simply by modifying templates, which as we all can sort of make the connection there. It's very similar to smart contracts, where you can pull a smart contract and mix modifications and put it back out there. And so there's still the benefit of open data and open development, right? And then that doesn't have to be only a detriment from the perspective of a lot of times, like with most things, you want some things to be public, but not everything to be public.I want the siding on my house to be public, but I don't necessarily want my bathroom to be public, right?
So, we see this in so many different areas of our lives. And the same can definitely be said for blockchain and to kind of elaborate a little bit on what I was thinking with our tool set that we're making available is people want to know that our bridging or that our NFT marketplace, they want to see the logic there and they want to be able to verify that. But then in other cases where the users don't want either their information to be shared, or we don't want certain information to be shared to everybody. Those are the things that really it's a matter of a consensus among the end users, right? Are they okay with this information being private? And so it does bring up some new problems as far as what we make private and what we keep away from the users.
But that being said, I think it's going to open up a whole new world for gaming in general because now this is finally available through Sapphire.
Upcoming Events and Ecosystem Campaigns
Yannic (Samurai Legends): I'll start out with my shameless plug. We are currently in the process of launching our PPP. We're busy with the alpha testing and our PPP is coming out over the coming months. Also want to note that there are a lot of launches in the near future and if you follow the project closely, there is likely in the near future going to be a sale that gives you a great opportunity to enter the ecosystem in terms of NFTs to really get into the ecosystem and be able to participate in everything that it entails.
Janec (Samurai Legends): Yeah, we basically live for the most part on Telegram. Following our account will give you all the information that you need. Our Telegram is samurailegends. And there you can find that community who is very active and participate.
Philip (Crypto Blades): So we are, for one, excited to begin implementing some Privacy focused features on Sapphire because as I mentioned, it's going to really open up a lot of doors for Crypto Blades but as well as the game by ecosystem as a whole.
And then on that front, if anyone in this space is a developer yourself and you're looking to fast track your development or free up some of your space to work on the actual game side of things and not have to develop all of the variety of different protocols yourselves. We have some integrations that are available to just help speed up that process. And for example, within two weeks, you guys can be live on eight different chains with NFT marketplace integration, token bridging, NFT bridging, tokenomics as a service and a variety of other pretty cool on-chain incentivized features, that's completely integrated by us. So just putting that out there as a plug, feel free to reach out via DM here on Twitter or feel free to reach out to English or Karlie Chan who are both listeners right now and we'd be happy to onboard anyone.