Safe Network Online Gaming

I think online gaming can be the fastest way to spread Safe network to the public. There is little discussion in the forum about game developers as a target group.

-What are the benefits of using Safe instead of clearnet for game developers?

-What opportunities does Safe provide that are currently not possible/easy in clearnet?

-Are there any problems/drawbacks with using Safe for gaming?

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No idea. I hadn’t played any games since my Sega Megadrive died. Discovered CoD Warzone last year and it blew my mind - so that’s the only game I play. Curious what the answers are though.

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I guess it depends on the kind of games,

Board games, of course :slight_smile:
FPS :roll_eyes:

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Chess seems to be popular at the moment.

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I see lot of problems and very few advantages. For online games you need super fast central server, which is the exact opposite of what the safenetwork is. Games are about appstores, centralized one. The bigger the app store, the more devs it has. Even Facebook failed misserably with trying to bring gaming to its platform. Devs re not interested if they do not get tons of free traffic from search. The whole industry stays on few big games earning fortunes and millions of devs earning close to nothing. People have very limited time, and games are like social networks, people pick the best and stay with them. So if you are not top 3 in the nieche, you are likely to fail. 99.999% of games does not convert. This means, if they pay advertizing, they do not tearn their money back. They pay advertizing to boost their app store positions, to get more free trafic. And then they can convert.

Decentralized gaming required different monetization aproach. We have seen a satoshi dice as a succesful example, that gambling can work. But for gaming, you need an app store, where all the devs come and are fighing for free installs. Or you need to implement a safecoin into economy, instead of typical virtual currencies. But that is also very iimiting. In freemium games, devs give users tons of free currency to keep them hooked. And they hope people get hooke and pay later. The amount of free coins pushed into system by devs is way larger than what people buy. So it is not possible to bring this model with safecoin. Devs need to create their own token, that they can print to infinity for free, and let people use that token in their games.

Of course, all those strategies can be modified, but in general without creating new monetization models, that artificially fit into safenetwork model we are not likely to see game devs jumping here.

The other issue is, devs are exensive. Game devleopment is costy. Devs do not develope without expecting huge profits. And without actual userbase it will be very hard to bring them here. But what we can see, is simply bringing existing web games, that does not require server and run offline in the browser. There are tons of such game hubs and for sure someone will bring them here. (If not owner, then someone will steal them and make them public.) So I think, there will be tons of web based stolen games, that people could play here without seeing ads or paying. I don’t like it, but this is the most likely scenario.

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Censorship resistance and data permanence could be one benefit.

You could anonymously make games with all kinds of content, that could not be published on the clearnet. One could possibly gamify a revolution in some countries, for example. The chinese social scoring already looks like a game, so a game developer might make a game that makes satire of that system, and reach huge audience in China.

EDIT:

It’s not how Safe Network can be used for the gaming as it is now, but what kind of gaming can be brought into existence in the Safe Network.

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I don’t expect it will be easy to attract game designers because Safe would be a difficult transition with relatively few advantages for that kind of use.

I think it is though a big opportunity for game builders (all app builders really) who are able to make use of its unique characteristics in innovative ways. I’ve no idea what these might be in the case of games, but I expect we’ll see some really innovative things from creative folks in this and other areas.

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I think the lowest hanging fruit would be the ability to distribute a game and its updates through the network.

  • No third party
  • Only pay once for each upload
  • Update server is always online and zero maintenance
  • Update mechanism is trivial if those append-only lists still exist

Gaming on the network would pretty much only be useful for turn based games with full visibility. Might be possible to implement some kinds of “not knowing” things, but it wouldn’t be universally applicable since there wouldn’t be a server who decides who gets what information. There could of course be a server or “referee” computer that distributes information and makes sure rules are being followed, that simplifies things a bit.

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Agreed and to reiterate, from day one game devs will be able to distribute updates (think multi-GB content patches, not only small bug fixes) using Safe. Anyone who’s been gaming long enough to see p2p-backed asset distribution get added to launchers would see this as a natural evolution.

For turn-based games, or any that aren’t latency sensitive, shared data writes need to be supported by Safe.

For latency sensitive games, such as FPSs and MMORPGs, Safe network would need to add the same kind of functionality as would be necessary for video livestreaming, another application Safe should be able to eventually support. On the question of its feasability, I’m confident it is.

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Turn based games are having a massive surge in popularity these days, there’s a surprising amount of inventivity and wonder in some of the new games coming out. This hasn’t translated much over to the slimenet, I wonder what clever things people will come up with in Safe in this area.

Also the simple fact that the game will be preserved forever - any curvefever or winterbells fans here? Curvefever disappeared, and appears to be gone forever, it was hugely sad. I am not sure if curvefever would be possible except locally, but even locally we’d have it forever.

Lastly chess - after compute has been used to solve world hunger or whatever else, a neural network chess engine on Safe would be so very exciting for all the chess lovers in the world. AlphaGo made a surprisingly big wave of enduring headlines a few years ago, I wonder how ‘Autonomous data network attempts to solve chess’ would catch people’s attention.

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Would is be possible to convert a simple chess board like this one : https://chessboardjs.com/ into something usable across safenet by two opponents ? Would it be easy ?

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@Aragorn

Assuming

then yes.

Yes, 2 appendable lists one do it, one for each user, with only owner write permissions. Then just store each move at the end of the list.

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@Traktion

Is the idea that to begin a game, users would share the Safe URL of their moves data with each other, and the game client would poll for updates?

Actually, if am correct, the position of each pieces is stored in the FEN string,
moves are checked by embedded js code,

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There are probably a few ways to start the game. The chess app could live at a safe URL. You could probably pass in the public key of each player’s user persona and the game could initialise them (maybe need a game ID to seed the lists). Or just the 2 lists. I’m sure there would be a few ways to make it simple, given a bit of thought.

I have some questions about where user personas could live, which could then simplify by passing in URLs for the 2 personas and let it pull the public keys from there. The same for email, chat, etc. But that is a more general conventions issue, I’d say.

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As mentioned earlier, creating a platform to replace Steam/Epic/etc. would be an ideal solution for Safe. They are getting taken for 20%+ of their game sales by these platforms, which is highway robbery, to be honest.

Additionally, falling under “gaming” could be casino or sportsbook type “games”. Anonymous decentralized gambling would be a huge money maker.

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I don’t see any reason a game that’s sold on Steam couldn’t use SAFE for things in the backend. Maybe there will be some large SAFE app store at some point, but for now games could be on Steam, mobile apps on Apple Appstore and Google play etc, unless apps got banned from using SAFE at all that is. A game could just use SAFE for keeping track of item ownership and maybe an in-game marketplace, that’s not really latency sensitive.

If compute or some plugin functionality was implemented on SAFE, then nodes could do physics calculations, these would also need to be performed by the clients, so it would mainly be to catch cheating players. What’s needed then is for players in proximity of each to send basically data on keyboard presses and mouse movements to each other. SAFE could be used to establish directly peer to peer connections between these players or the game could have servers for syncing this state to prevent players from seeing each others ip adresses. So either players would know the ip addresses of nearby players or the game would know the ip adresses of players. Players could connect through a vpn for more privacy though. In any case there’s a tradeoff between latency and privacy. You can’t have perfect privacy and good latency. Players could use separate identities for each game for more privacy. In any case it can be implemented to preserves privacy and prevent tracking better than what’s mostly done now.

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@intrz

It’s not as simple as in any case IMO. This isn’t the topic for me to go deeply into it so I’ll be brief but, even p2p needs to form a hierarchical/segmented network to scale, otherwise everyone connected to everyone would reach what Ethereum developers are learning about. :slight_smile:

On one end of an architectural spectrum there’s direct connection with least latency, privacy vulnerability, and inability to scale. On the other end is something like Tor that can scale and is ‘private’, however the latency is poor. Somewhere in the middle is a great solution for Safe. Moreover if there’s an ability to leverage geographic proximity it’d be a lock (no pun intended) IMHO.

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Video live streaming is as simple as writing the stream to the Safe Network as a file and people watching simply are keeping up with the stream as it is being written. Probably easier to live stream with Safe then using complex setup servers as some need now. Might need a video player that knows the file is being written as it is playing so it does not fail if user tries to fast forward or whatever

The viewers are only the lag time behind the live stream as it is written.

And even better is the live stream can then be replayed without any need to write anything. Obviously if people want to edit their live stream for a edited release later then that just means they write a new file. with the edited version or update the current version of the file. On Safe both versions will always be available.

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