To better introduce the projects in NEO ecosystem and share the project progress with the community, NEO conducted a series of interviews with the core teams of various projects under the name of LOVE NEO. You can find the edited transcripts of the interview below.
Q: Say hi to everyone!
Wizard: Hello everyone, I am the founder of CardMaker, Wizard. I started by making games, and I have been in this industry for very long now.
Q: CardMaker is one of the most important games in NEO ecosystem, do you want to share with us what awards have the CardMaker received in the past?
Wizard: It was mainly the first NEO game development competition, but I think I really should factor in luck. One factor was the voting, the other was because we used UGC atmosphere, which was new at the time. Thus, it was mainly luck.
Q: How’s it going right now? Are you going to forcefully develop it based on NEO?
Wizard: No don’t put it that way haha, it’s not as awkward as it sounds. CardMaker is a game which focuses on creativity, we put a Cake Town in the game initially, it is the starting point. And afterwards, we will teamup with NEO to add in a Natural Town, it would be very customized. We will focus on linking those two towns, but the key concern is about two phases of users. One phase of users will start first, and that will cause differences in the two phases. Therefore, we will make individual data independent, and make cross chain trading possible in the user centre; so that we can ensure both groups’ rights, at the same time, both groups can benefit from each other. The connotation of Natural Town is mysterious natural technology.
Q: When will it be launched?
Wizard: Pretty soon, we will start testing next week, and launch it afterwards.
Q: Any big events after launching?
Wizard: There will be characters which are designed specially for NEO. As far as I know, NEO has a large overseas community, we will design characters for those markets, for example, bald eagle for America, etc. Also, those two towns will have its individual features. For example, for Cake Town, it will require some special resources from Natural Town, such as element needed for producing light. And in return, Natural Town will form special cards with those elements, so that it can keep the game going. Therefore, those two towns will have mutual demand-supply relationship. Other special resources can be produced eventually, this is a design to benefit both groups.
Q: I have chatted to Wizard quite a lot these days, and I came to realize how ingenious Wizard’s ideas are. So how do you form those ways of thinking?
Wizard: I am quite flattered when you gave me those comments. First of all, when I was a worker for a company, I didn’t have much responsibilities, nor did I need to think flexibly. However, when I started my own company, as an entrepreneur, I started to think about many different stuffs. Of course, the main point is that I really like games. After 10+ years of developing games, I realized that many game developers are not in fact into games themselves, this is awful. The special part of us making CardMaker is that we, as the game developers, are big fans of our own games.
After 10+ years in the industry, I realized that a lot of directors are only testing others games, for example, World of Warcraft. They don’t love their own games. And if you don’t, you cannot improve on your games. So I think passion is the key.
Another thing is about logic behind blockchain — it has completely different logic as compared to traditional mode. For example, token design. It is a process from inflation to deflation, which requires subversive thinking. The second one, is about fundamental thinking behind blockchain — mainly decentralization and multiple nodes. This involves delegation of design and operation power to the users, so that they can get involved in the whole market economy and design. Of course, CardMaker has to improve in this area. We will turn CardMaker into a real market platform eventually. It will not be directed by the official developers. Instead, we will become a player eventually, there are a lot more to it really. We are currently developing CardMaker’s game system currently, which will be launched in June. More users can participate in the UGC part. Now, we collaborate with Xiao Wu’s Last Trip. Their game can be placed in ours, which I think, can be considered as the first project in blockchain circle. I think there will be lots more game ideas in blockchain industry, the problem now is the low quantity, and that everyone’s thinking is more or less inflexible. We can in fact see much more potential.
Q: During your one-year experience in the industry, have you noticed that lottery dominates dApp? Have you ever considered, even for one second, of joining? Have you ever doubt whether the things you are doing is correct or not?
Wizard: Gambling type of games do dominate dApp without doubt. However, I firmly believe that it will have high quantity with or without dApp and blockchain, which means that there is no direct correlation between blockchain and lottery. Blockchain is only making money transfer easier, that’s all. I think whether the business is blooming or not doesn’t really concern us at all once you realize my previous point. Take a step back, I don’t have a natural talent in doing those kinds of business, why should I force myself? So I am not tempted. Games are not as exciting as gambling, but gambling will rob away everything from you after a while. It is clear among those who had experience, but no one would expose their worst. Also, I think it has a net negative effect to our ecosystem, which is also why I like NEO — NEO does not support those.
Q: It’s not that we don’t support, we declined all straight away. This is not sustainable, you see all those gambling games disappear only after one week.
Wizard: And I think a lot of public chains have realized that this in fact has nothing to do with them. Instead, they should focus on more valuable stuffs.
Q: What’s your family’s opinion on you playing games?
Wizard: First of all, I need to say ‘thank you’ to my family. Because I was taught to play game since I was three. My father bought NES for me, at that time it was a tape which consists of 42 games. My dad asked me to only proceed to the next game when I score 5000 for the first game, so on and for forth. I was trained that way since young. (laughter)
You need to understand the challenges Chinese gaming industries faced along the way. For example, selling of game machines was banned for eight years, it was awful. It really depends on how games are portrayed by the mass media, in my opinion, they can in fact bring huge advantage to our life. For example, it trains your reaction speed and shapes your way of thinking. There are clear differences shown between people who have or have not played games before in overseas interviews. Games are there to entertain people, so do not see it as a negative thing. I think people should all have a correct attitude towards games, there shouldn’t be a huge debate on whether to support it or not. Secondly, it’s about creative ideas for games. I think it shouldn’t be a big problem supporting children as parents. I am really grateful towards my family in that regard.
Q: I cannot agree more. The reason why Chinese Wuxia games’ RPG can stand on its own is because other culture cannot understand and integrate into this context. Only Chinese can appreciate the dreamed life created in those Wuxia games. They are different to those foreign sci-fi games.
One of Zhihu’s most popular users, Jiawei Zhang, received loads of negative comment recently. He used to say,’the reason why we love game is because we can experience our dreamed life in it.’ I totally agree with it.
I prefer sci-fi movies personally. It’s just like why would you be interested in those romance ones when you have seen lots in real life?
Wizard: Yes, it is a higher level of spiritual experience.
Q: Is that only small games would make use of blockchain because they are facing pressure from those big companies? Or, are small game developers expecting to be bought by big companies?
Wizard: So for a new area, small companies tend to be on the frontline. That is because all big companies have a relatively stable structure, they wouldn’t risk going to an unexplored area since they are doing fine in their expertise. They will wait for those small companies to develop first, which gives a lot of good opportunities to small enterprise, such as those popular small mobile games. In blockchain industry, a lot of media are saying that big companies will join soon, but it can be propaganda.
But in fact, I think it is a good phenomenon. I believe that big companies will enter this industry sooner or later. For example, take Tencent as an example, it took a weird approach. They didn’t mention blockchain initially, instead, they attract users first, and educate them at a later stage. They told users that they can keep cats as pets when they reach level 22, and then introduce them to blockchain. Most people are still not aware of blockchain, or even worse, they think it is a negative thing. Therefore, the transition would be smoother with big companies introducing this new concept to them.
Therefore, both big and small firms shouldn’t be worrying about this — it will be a natural transition. Although most application scenario are different from games, big companies can have an educational effect. They made users to use blockchain without realizing it, and only told them afterwards that this is blockchain. This is a good way to spread the knowledge. Therefore, I think it would benefit the whole industry when big companies enter the industry in all aspects.
Q: We will now give you time to advertise for your game!
Wizard: CardMaker is a great game. I really enjoyed it. And CardMaker took the traditional form, but with the aim of opening the new market. I think for a game to be valuable, it either entertains people, or create experience. Blockchain games are surely in the right direction in this regard. They will help open and create a true growing market, but not some fake and meaningless revolution or propaganda.
Q: Okay! It is only possible to produce good products with those insightful thinking. We truly respect your knowledge and talent. Thank you for joining us in Love NEO, thank you everyone!
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