Just thinking about how a decentralised open-source RuneScape-style game could work

Obviously RuneScape itself could never be open-source — it relies on users performing repetitive actions and interacting with NPCs in a way that means open-sourcing it would enable cheating. So an alternative would have to be engaging in a human way that software can’t emulate somehow. In a non-PVP area, you could just ignore human players completely.

Truly open-source would mean that any surprises in quests and whatnot would be public knowledge before they’re even added to the game.

Being truly decentralised would mean that moderation would be effectively impossible. Updates/rollbacks/etc would require near-consensus. The freemium model would no longer be applicable. Real world trading of any tradable item would be inevitable, and playing the game could be someone’s full-time job.

There are so any issues with making a game like this work. But also, it’s worth considering what could be possible that would previously be unthinkable.

With an open-source game, the default app could be replaced with a customised app to give a different user experience of the virtual world. Maybe even a text-based one.

Decentralisation would mean that, assuming the project is hosted on Safe, law enforcers would be unable to influence the game-play. It could be made closer to real life than would ordinarily be acceptable. For example, a character’s death could mean that they restart at level 1, which would make the game more thrilling to play.

Instead of having multiple servers, the game would effectively be run on 1 massive server. So instead of the same world being duplicated hundreds of times, the map could instead be really really big.

Maybe when I get good at programming games I’ll try to make this monstrosity. Any other related ponderings welcome.


The first time I made money online was selling loot from everquest on ebay. It was a good deal for everyone. I am a kid with the time to play a MMORPG for 8 hours a day and you are and adult that makes more money then I could at a “job”

Um if you make a game like this law enforcement won’t come after you LMAO. I have played MMOs with pema death. Yes they are thrilling at first maybe, but really ultimately disappointing because you either die or play it so safe that its no longer the fun of taking risks you would not take if it wasn’t just a game.

I have thought of this idea before. (although I am not saying it’s my idea so don’t steal it. In fact please do steal it and execute because I won’t.) What I envisioned was a game like second life 2.0. Really there would be no limit on how much content people could create if that data is stored by a scalable decentralized method.

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Yes they are thrilling at first maybe, but really ultimately disappointing because you either die or play it so safe that its no longer the fun of taking risks you would not take if it wasn’t just a game.

Ah, that’s a shame. I guess it’ll have to be more complex and engaging than just perma-death.

The only issue I can think of with having one massive server is that overcrowding could cause performance issues, but I guess that could be solved by not letting characters overlap in physical location, and a human crush function to prevent players from hogging busy locations.


A RS private server might be able to be ported.

And for these types of games, the underlying system could be open source but just run in silos or different private but free instances that are run by different communities on SAFE


The problem is that the resources in the game with an unlimited amount of users will become depleted quickly and cause issues. You would quickly find that a procedural terrain is needed so that players will be able to travel many miles without seeing anyone. Maybe create a map as big as the real world?


The ratio of resources to users would need to be sane of course, but that’s just a case of adapting as the game grows more popular. If the resources behaved in like the real world, it would definitely need to be a big game, but I don’t see the need for realism.

Maybe instead of a procedural terrain, some kind of automatic mechanism to guide how the world should expand over time? Like, making sure spawning areas don’t become overcrowded.


I agree because if you look at that game No Man’s Sky where the world feels very empty and abandoned because it is so big. You should give people option to spawn somewhere and have the world grow as people together explore more, like Columbus it made our world bigger etc.


What if at first everyone starts at the same origin and the map is relatively small. But over time people can open up new territory by defeating the local dragon or something. I would make this a feat you can’t really solo, so that the world only expands when there is enough “pressure” rather then just cause one guy is running around being a hero.


I would set a parameter so people either can choose randomly get distributed in areas until the environments capacity becomes to large. Some variance would make economy interesting and also promote traveling and trading, also for resources etc.

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It would be a fun project to look into how you can distributed values on a fixed terrain based on network qualities between cities and resources etc.

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There is this amazing software called Vue and it can create stunningly photorealistic terrains.

Maybe with the new Unreal engine which can render huge terrains without losing depth quality this would be amazing.

First I would generate a terrain so that many qualities of the climate and geography make it unique and interesting for game play. Then let the game start with abandoned settlements from a past civilization, let the people begin there and distribute them if one area gets too crowded.

Well you get the idea, just to make the game interesting and not one spawn hotspot if we really only use one massive server. Hans in Lumbrige would agree.

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ya I do like this idea. And really its not the first MMO that would try to have a “true” economic simulation. That said they usually fail because the world is simply not vast enough to make sure no one superpower controls everything individually. I think with a world that lived on the SAFE network it could become ridiculously vast. Like you would not need to download the whole thing in 1 sitting if its so big that you really would not hope to circumnavigate the globe in 1 night. I think the SAFE network really lends well to this idea because its perfectly set up to organically grow as more data is needed to store this virtual world.

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What I think you are referring to is how the data is stored on SafeNetwork and that these pieces could reflect the places that someone visited.

Basically you store the data of places you visited and explored, when other people visited these new locations they will be able to explore through the pieces of the collective that already has been there.
Basically the more people visit a place the more accessible the data and faster it is retrieved as it is widely available. Those places that are unknown (might live in some single nodes that already pre-generated the terrain) and are then also stored in the players who go there.

If you know Age of Empires there is this thing like line of sight on the map, where your explorer or troops already went is visible, this kind of reflects the data that you will be storing as some kind of memory. Where many players have overlapping known areas those areas are the highways of the game and data is easily accessible and downloaded to any new player from the others.

The unexplored will remain low in size and won’t take up much of the networks storing because it’s either not visited yet (only available in one master node) or too little people have it in their memory to be relevant to take up huge size.

This way the people who commonly visited the places they are familiar with it will be directly accessible from their own vault or memory and don’t put any additional load on the network. They stay within their own psychological interests of the terrain they know and interact with while still providing data those who are new and enter the areas they know.

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yes exactly! that’s what I am getting at. The SAFE network architecture actually mimics this kind of edgewise growth based on current pressure. So ya the areas that were the “core” would indeed be on many nodes because there is a great deal of demand for them. Other systems don’t adapt dynamically like this and really just have to say every zone is the same.

I used 3 different layers here, lets say every layer is the area a user explored and stores in his local memory. The overlapping areas are explored by many and the network can offer this quickly as it’s very accessible, the dark areas still need to be explored but can be either procedurally generated on the go or are already stored in master vaults which basically hold all the information of certain areas until the are loaded by players which then help with distributing the location information.

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Then you can rasterize the map in blocks, let just assume the whole map is already pre-generated, or you need to fill in the blocks but still make sense with surroundings.

Every block is stored by master vaults for when nobody has explored it yet, if the user enters a block all the data will be loaded in his local machine to make it easy to explore and make the data accessible.
A big grid size will make every user store a lot of data so there is a high chance another user can find it as the chance is lower that somebody doesn’t have this unique block. This however increases the initial load and creates peaks in the network.

Smaller blocks increase the number of blocks that are probably not explored yet and also make the data less accessible but blocks are small and network peak load is reduced.

But I think you get the idea, I guess dynamic blocks could fix a lot of issues too.

Edit: After thinking about this one issue people might run into is being very close to a block border before it is loaded and then what should they look at beyond? One solution could be to load all surrounding blocks and then use distance blur or environmental fog to not look into empty space.

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I would also scale the TTL of a block based on popularity, maybe implement versions too so the environment can change over time.

By the way we can build this using the local storage from SafeApp and then load blocks which are stored on the SafeNetwork, think not too hard to pull this off.

Now we got model for the terrain data, next question is how to manage realtime players, NPC’s, or some database that stores the game state for all users.

A game world like this, maybe call it SafeWorld, could be a great way to boost people to be on it, and directly use safecoins as in-game payment.

Man I LIKE this idea! :smiley:


I have been wondering that to. Is the SAFE network well designed to keep updating in real time what actions people have taken on the world? For a game like this you really can’t put that all client side because that would enable people to cheat if the sports plays were just what they reported after the fact.

I really don’t see a problem with loading all adjacent blocks. Then if you push into one of these border blocks and there are now unexplored adjacent blocks the game just generates some new ones. I don’t see any need to say the world is X size and generate it all from the get go. Let it grow depending how many people are using it like the SAFE network.

I know the goal is to showcase the SAFE network but just practically speaking would it maybe be better to have a central server handle the day to day action and the SAFE netowork holds the long term saves like a new block of terrain being generated?

That would be the next thing, real-time peer-to-peer consensus.

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