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Is fully decentralized blockchain gaming even possible? – Cointelegraph Magazine

![Is decentralized blockchain gaming even possible](

  • Despite the branding of “decentralization” in crypto games, most are only partially decentralized.
  • Game assets are on-chain, but game logic, state, and storage remain off-chain on centralized servers.
  • The main challenge is that current blockchains are too slow to handle the high number of transactions required by video games.
  • Developers have to make tradeoffs to make the game accessible to non-crypto audiences.
  • Some games have implemented hybrid systems, allowing assets to live off-chain for wider audience reach.
  • There is a passionate community interested in building fully on-chain “autonomous worlds” where players have more control.

How Web3 games started

  • Web3 games initially focused on being financial products, which helped gain mainstream attention during the crypto bull cycle.
  • However, when token prices fell, the emphasis on financial returns diminished.
  • Web3 games are now shifting their focus to ownership and fun rather than financial returns.
    • Enter on-chain games

      • Fully on-chain games have assets, game logic, state, and storage all on-chain.
      • Having everything on-chain ensures immutability, transparency, and allows for open composability.
      • On-chain games enable players to implement innovative changes without waiting for centralized updates.

      Collective action

      • On-chain games like Dark Forest and OPCraft have allowed players to form communities and implement collective actions through on-chain smart contracts.
      • These actions are binding and cannot be altered by anyone, ensuring transparency and fairness.

      Communist take over

      • In games like OPCraft, players have formed a communist society where resources are shared among all members.
      • These rules are enforced through on-chain smart contracts, preventing any changes or manipulations.

      Limitations, limitations, limitations

      • The main limitation of on-chain games is scalability due to the high cost of executing complex game logic on-chain.
      • Current on-chain games have simple game loops and are similar to early-era video games like Space Invaders and Pac-Man.
      • Partially decentralized Web2.5 games do not face the same scalability tradeoffs but sacrifice open composability.

      Future of on-chain games

      • Scalability and game design principles are key challenges for fully on-chain games.
      • Improvements in blockchain infrastructure and software frameworks can unlock the full potential of on-chain games.
      • Ethereum’s ZK-rollups offer scalability opportunities for on-chain games.
      • Developers are exploring the use of layer 2 solutions like Starknet for fully on-chain games.
      • The on-chain gaming space is evolving, and the future holds possibilities for more complex and immersive on-chain games.
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