IT & Systems Management

Australian developer launches bid to become first blockchain-powered eSport with Gods Unchained

Fuel Games has announced the pre-sale launch of their online game, Gods Unchained, which they’re branding as the world’s first blockchain-based eSport.

According to the Sydney-based company, the new online multiplayer CCG game is a showcase for how blockchain technology can be used to offer gamers more ownership of the items they purchase or earn in games.

“Gamers spend tens of billions of dollars and countless hours each year acquiring in-game items. But game studios barely offer their users a licensing agreement for these items, let alone actual ownership - they’re a central bank with no oversight,” said CEO James Ferguson, who founded Fuel Games with his brother Robbie.

The brothers were motivated by their own experiences in gaming, understanding the shortcomings that come with game developers having centralised control over in-game economies.

“Offering players true ownership of in-game items, and the ability to trade those items freely on secondary markets, means gamers can finally be rewarded for their efforts and spending. As the games industry switches to asset-driven revenue models, players have a more urgent need than ever for guarantees about the value and tradability of those assets,” said Robbie Ferguson.

The "pre-sale launch" of Gods Unchained follows Fuel Games’ $2.4 million seed round, which was led by investors Continue Capital and Nirvana Capital, and soon followed by Sora Ventures and Coinbase. Fuel say these funds are being used to develop games and build their software platform, Apollo, which will allow game developers to integrate their titles with blockchain technology at scale.

“For blockchain based games to be successfully adopted by the mainstream market, there needs to be a seamless users experience. Gods Unchained aims to offer all the benefits of decentralisation while eliminating the friction traditionally encountered when using cryptocurrencies,” added Robbie Ferguson.

In February 2018, Fuel Games released Etherbots, the company’s first game utilising the Ethereum blockchain, which offered players ownership of digital robots that could be used to battle other players. They say that, within two weeks of the game launching, Fuel Games had sold over $1M of in-game items.

“Decentralised games will allow people to familiarise themselves with blockchain technology in a fun and user-friendly environment,” said Robbie. “I won’t be surprised if gaming ends up being blockchain’s first killer application outside the financial space. Gamers have always been early-adopters, and this time will be no different.”

Read more: Why is Bitcoin such a security hazard?

As for the kind of gameplay that Gods Unchained will offer, the game looks to be an online collectible card game in the same vein as something like Hearthstone.

Fuel Games say that "Gods Unchained is a decentralized competitive card game that takes some of the best lessons learned from games like Hearthstone, MTG and Fearia and turns them into a truly community focused game. At its core is a revolutionary decentralized backend, enabling users to trade and sell their cards freely, with the same level of ownership as if they were real, tangible cards"

The game will allow players to choose from playing as one of six different Gods to play, each with their own unique set of cards, abilities and flavour.

"A fundamental component of each God’s identity is their God power. This is a small activatable power that can be typically used once per turn. In Gods Unchained you will have a choice of three powers at the start of each match; with one being a one-time use ‘ultimate’. These powers are a key way to keep the meta fresh without changing cards themselves, and make matches more dynamic."

Read more: HTC announce blockchain-powered smartphone

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