Update On Ethereum Gaming Platform Etherplay Live On The Mainnet

Etherplay, a gaming platform built on Ethereum, just went live on the mainnet on January 3, 2017. So far, things have been going well for the skill game platform.

Once upon a time, the Etherplay team believed that Ethereum could allow them to build their idea of a gaming system with “less hassle.” By utilizing an oracle-based smart contract run by Etherplay, with all data available to the players, it made their idea of a system that’s accountable and verifiable a reality.

With Etherplay, the goal is for a player to get the highest score. Similar to the way an arcade machine requires a player to deposit money or tokens for each play, Etherplay requires an Ether payment. For each attempt, a player pays a gas fee with Ether to get their score saved, which is then recorded onto the Ethereum blockchain. However, the difference between Etherplay and an arcade is that the fee paid gets added to a jackpot that’s shared amongst other players. At the end of the competition, winners are rewarded when the oracle verifies the best scores. According to Etherplay:

“Competitions are organized automatically and run for a limited time. At the end of each competition the players with the top score get a share of the jackpot. To allow us to improve and make new games, we take a percentage of that jackpot. For now it is 25% (a standard for a skill game platform) and we will never go bigger than this.”

After Etherplay’s announcement of going live on the mainnet, Ronan (@wighawag) and the Etherplay Team, told ETHNews about their progress and hurdles:

“Etherplay’s launch was a success. The jackpot which started at 0.1 ether has now reached 10 ether and we got a lot more attention than we thought we would. Overall, the feedback is really positive. This set us in a good mood for the coming year. We want to release more games and polish the player's experience.

We have few people concerned about the potential of abuse by bots to win the competition but we think they are underestimating the cost of building such bots, especially since we plan to update our games regularly to keep players interested. 

The main hurdle we face is in terms of user experience. The blockchain brings its own downside here. First of all, players from outside the Ethereum community (and there are many) require to get ether before playing. This has a cost - and requires them to buy more - than the tiny amount required to play the game. We also rely on an average transaction throughout and sometimes this is not possible, so some transactions get canceled, requiring players to replay. From people without knowledge of how Ethereum works, this is frustrating. We have a potential solution for this but this is not perfect.

Hopefully, as Ethereum becomes more widespread, other solutions will emerge. What we would love to see is zero fee transaction using rate limiting transaction.”

Etherplay’s first video game to go live on the mainnet is called, Etherspace, which is inspired by the classic “Asteroids” game. To play, gamers must hold Ether and set up an Ethereum browser. Users can run Metamask or Mist if they don’t want to run their own Ethereum node.

Gamers who wish to play can click here once they have everything set up. Participants are also encouraged to join Etherplay’s slack channel. To learn even more about how the game works, you may visit their recent blog update.

So far, 2017 looks to be the year that a lot of Ethereum projects come to fruition. As each project is deployed on the mainnet and bugs are worked out, Ethereum may see a major shift in greater adoption. 

Visit Etherplay’s website and subscribe to their mailing list for more updates.