August 2017 Update

Lots of things happened since last update in March. We hoped to post updates regularly but things got in our way.

Games

While we were planning to release games regularly, we got delayed and instead focused on finding third party game developers which in our opinion is far more important in the long run. This is still a work in progress but look forward to when we get something to show. We did not abandon the plan to make more games ourselves though :)

Actually we released a test game on ropsten for testing integration with the mobile ethereum client : Status . If you are using it, have a go, it is part of the pre-installed apps.

We also spent time on exploring different game ideas. Real-time multiplayer games were on the table for example but without any implementation yet. It might be revisited in the near future but would require a different system.

Ethereum Increase in Gas Cost

After the increase of the ethereum gas cost, we had to rethink our system including our smart contract. We found several ways to decrease the cost significantly and we will now carry the implementation forward. We will announce it when ready. This is a big change but this will be a good thing for our players as we will be able to go back to a low entry price. It should also include extra features, stay tuned :)

Status.im Hackathon

At the beginning of June we decided to take part in the status hackathon and we built a fully decentralised strategy game. While it went under the radar, we think it is a great example of game for the blockchain and we are committed to bring it back in a more robust form. We started to rewrite it and we will announce it when ready hopefully before devcon3. We are really excited about this one as this should be fun to see a full game on the blockchain :)

The hackathon also let us discover an interesting method to reduce interaction with ethereum making the game experience more seamless. We plan to add this to our skill game platform to improve our players’ experience. We plan to share our findings soon.

Outreach

In June we went to Norwich Gaming Festival to present our game platform. It was great to meet some game developers and we got some good feedback. We also just came back from the 4TG Game Conference where we were happily surprised to meet players knowledgeable with Ethereum. We also got some interesting feedback.

Our Platform

Regarding the current status of our platform, everything is still running fine since January with the same smart contract. Our players are still enjoying the games and while not many are participating anymore, it is currently a nice opportunity for players to win something. So go ahead and have a try : http://etherplay.io ;-)

Open Source

Finally we also worked on library and tools and decided to release them on github. Ethreader for example allows us to analyse our smart contract easily by scrapping an decoding the transactions made to the contract. Since we use Haxe to compile to JavaScript we wrote externs for the web3 stack. If you do not know Haxe, there will be a conference in September in Amsterdam where we will present our work with ethereum, more details here : http://summit.haxe.org. Haxe has some nice property like static typing, abstract types and macros while staying very similar to human JavaScript in its output. This is very useful for interacting with Smart Contract where we got type safe access to our smart contract methods. Haxe is also our language of choice for game development.

Note that the open source tools we published are work in progress but might be useful to some. Let us know and if you use them and find issues or require something not implemented. We would love to collaborate on them.

Do not hesitate to join us in the slack here.

And follow us on twitter : @etherplay

Thanks for reading.

The Etherplay team