Building your own Blockchain integrated games will require many distinct technologies and advanced techniques.
You’ve probably heard about the hype surrounding Blockchain gaming and Metaverse tokens, which recently captured the global imagination.
Why Blockchain Powered Games?
Almost any game developer who is new to blockchain and crypto will ask- why?
One advantage of blockchain gaming which most people will know already is the inherent difficulty in spoofing/hacking items or the system. This is because a developer can ensure that their video game logic will verify if a user has an item according to the blockchain.
To items outside the gaming world, this will add value. For example, NFT’s can be traded as gaming items by players on a marketplace like OpenSea. If your currency of choice is well-supported, like Ethereum, this will enable players to obtain real life rewards through trading items with each other.
The traditional route involves storing all of this information for a multiplayer game in the cloud, and paying to host it. In this instance, the blockchain itself acts as your data store, so that’s one less thing to be concerned about.
If you’re new to the world of programming, looking at some example projects for 2D/3D which use known game engines will let you build and ship games for Desktop, Mobile, and Web platforms.
If you have some experience as a game developer, then these will probably feel very familiar.
At the same time, you always have the option of building your own game engine. However, this is not ideal if you do not have experience with graphics and physics simulation.
Communicating with Web3
Something you might know by now is that the essential part of blockchain gaming is integration with the blockchain.
Even though you’ll most likely be dealing with traditional game engines, you can use a variety of API’s and SDKs to interact with Web3.
If you decide to use Unity or Godot, most Dotnet libraries will work for you. The following will list frameworks for accessing a variety of blockchains from C#:
Binance Smart Chain (BSC):BSC C# SDK
A good example to start with is Nethereum’s Unity Hello World guide.
These various SDKs can be used directly within your game development code in C# for both Unity and Godot.
With Unreal Engine, blockchains can be directly interacted with via several C++ SDKs. You can even use blueprint libraries like Etherlinker for no code!
Across different API’s, most of the functionality will remain the same. This includes creating wallets, interacting with smart contacts and sending tokens.
Interacting with Blockchain Data
Now that communication with your preferred blockchain of choice has been established, what are you going to do with it?
This will be up to you, the developer, as you decide what type of information you’ll store on the blockchain, be it individual items, characters or anything else you can think of.
A great example here would be storing an item (some type of rarity) as a Non-Fungible Token, or NFT, an ERC721 Smart Contract on the Ethereum Blockchain. This means that once a player has logged in, you would have to check the contents of their wallet, determine exactly what items they have, and load/render it in the game accordingly.
Don’t keep yourself confined to just NFT’s though! You can also create Smart Contracts to represent data of almost any form i.e experience points, levels etc. and read and write to these from your game.
The Techniques discussed here are game type agnostic, however, so you can put them to use for every type of game, regardless of whether it’s a 2D side scroller, or a VR FPS/RPG.
Now that you’re caught up on the basics and some of the tech involved with getting started in blockchain game building, learn more about blockchain fundamentals. Brush up on understanding Ethereum Fundamentals, writing smart contracts, and compare blockchains to suit your gaming needs.