Chainmonsters.io: Relaunch as Trading Card Collectibles

Chainmonsters.io
Aug 29 · 5 min read

The crypto part of Chainmonsters is being relaunched. Watch the announcement trailer and learn more!

The Problem

Outdated smart contracts

As one of the first ever blockchain games out there, the smart contracts dating back to August of 2017(!) the Chainmmonsters game and experience have evolved quite a bit in the last 2 years.

Especially the old smart contract limit functionality quite substantially

  • Support on Third-Party marketplaces is limited
  • 2D pixel art does not work well with e.g. OpenSea which is designed for SVGs
  • (old) NFTs cannot be bundled together and do not include some standard behaviour which had been finalized in 2018

Different target audiences

Over the course of 2018 and the first half of 2019 and especially during the Open Beta phase of the CM MMO we concluded that there are two specific target audiences playing and interacting with the CM ecosystem:

  • Crypto people interested in tech and investing/trading
  • Traditional players

The later is highly engaged by the concept of a cross-platform Pokemon-esque MMO experience but has limited to none crypto/blockchain knowledge making onboarding users incredibly difficult. Nonetheless, our data shows that 80% of our audience consists of traditional players whereas crypto players are more interested in playing around with tech and benefitting from the scarcity of rare mons.

Balancing issues in the MMO

Benefitting blockchain bought monsters in a game that is mainly designed for all audiences was a challenge which we could not find a satisfying solution unfortunately. The so called “Gen-0” mons were either too strong or too weak depending on the player’s POV and mixing those two different player bases up is a huge problem today.

Keeping original backers/investors satisfied is key to success

Since the original backers during 2018/early 2019 were playing the main part in making this game studio work and basically funding most of the game’s development now, we have to make sure that those original backers do not loose any “value” based on their original investment.

The overall total revenue up until now is about $45.000 USD which is not that much in the gaming space of course but for a crypto project being available on just one blockchain (Ethereum), and for the most part one-man-journey, this was huge.

The Solution

After playing around with various concepts and ideas in the last couple of months we came up with a unique solution:

Splitting up the game and audiences

Crypto and scarcity based collectibles are a strong concept and with the right approach this is a growing market and ecosystem which we would like to continue to benefit from.

This however requires us to split up the crypto based game from the main CM experience (the MMO part).

It’s time for something new and exciting:

The Chainmonsters Trading Card Game

A brand new set of smart contracts and a new crypto-only(!) economy and game experience will enable us to satisfy the original backers while building a unique set of games built around the trading cards that are running independent of the main CM game.

Economy

Players purchase card packs consisting of five random cards with at least one rare or better. With a total of 150 (+1 Aetherian card) unique cards/monsters the “Classic” set as we call it provides a basis for future card sets and content to come.

Mechanics

Here is the key difference.

Instead of assigning stats and attributes to the cards directly, the one and only determination of a card’s value is its rarity!

This not only saves valuable gas in the smart contracts, it also keeps them relatively easy to manage for First-and Third-Party implementations.

How does it work from a “game” POV?

Adventures

Instead of providing one large game experience (like the CM MMO), these cards are disconnected from a game mechanic’s layer which enables us to push out a range of minigames referred to as “Adventures” which

  • utilize the card collection
  • enables adding new and exciting mechanics on a game per game basis
  • allows third party and community developers to easily integrate
  • can launch their own set of additional cards which are connected to the game

As a traditional trading card game there would need to be more than just 151 mons including but not limited to spells, hero cards and more that specifically define the game’s mechanics.

Scarcity

While the total supply of cards is not technically limited, some cards are rarer than others.

Basic Rarities include:

  • Common
  • Rare
  • Epic
  • Legendary

Furthermore each card consists of 3 different Purities:

  • Regular
  • Golden
  • HOLO

Similar to the original Gen-0 smart contracts, there is a hard limit of 10.000 HOLO cards than can exist which makes them especially valuable for collectors.

Each pack has a chance to open any of the above rarities but at least one rare will be opened per pack.

Golden cards can be crafted by combining (thus destroying) 4 cards of the same type.

This incentives players to utilize Third-Party marketplaces to get additional copies of a card and decreases the dissatisfaction when opening duplicates.

Fancy collectible cards

Based on our user research the crypto community is highly interested in both rare and special looking collectible assets. For that reason we are incorporating state of the art effects and animations to each trading card and making HOLO cards in particular especially desirable!

(This is featured in the trailer)

Aetherian Auction

This unique hot-potato style auction will remain untouched since the underlying NFT is not tradeable anyway.

As another incentive for the card holder of this unique card we are adding a 2.5% revenue share to the Ethereum contracts which benefit from all sales automatically.

Handling original backers

As mentioned before, the original backers won’t be forgotten!

For that reason every original Gen-0 monster can be converted into a HOLO type plus each conversion grants a free Founder’s pack.

(Conversions are limited based on a to be determined blocktime during launch so smart players can’t purchase monsters from the old contracts and then convert for profit)

This also means that a fair bit of traffic will be created on the first week of launch since people want to convert their mons and unpack their free Founder packs as soon as possible.

Interaction between TCG and CM MMO

To account for the different target audiences we are currently removing any and all blockchain connections from our systems to allow new and intuitive onboarding processes used on Steam, and popular AppStores to integrate a brand new account system powered by PlayFab.

This makes onboarding traditional player across platforms easy and removes the hard and complicated crypto setup process completely.

What we do instead is allow crypto players to connect their accounts which enables them to use their crypto based trading cards as regular monsters in the main game.

Summary

We think these changes are important and actually provide more value to original backers since the chance of opening HOLO cards are pretty low.

The new smart contracts empower a wide variety of features being enabled on our partner sites and third-party marketplaces including OpenSea.

With a dedicated pool of revenue going straight into funding of community minigames we believe that we can build out a ever growing base of games utilizing these and future trading card sets to its full potential.

Chainmonsters.io

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Massive Multiplayer RPG inspired by Pokemon

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