Bitcoin developer Joshua Henslee released a video this week where he spoke to Joe DePinto, co-founder of Haste Arcade, about Bitcoin SV’s (BSV) unlimited capabilities.
How Haste Arcade Started
DePinto begins by explaining how he started Haste Arcade with Daniel Wagner and the LeForce brothers Eric and Keith. They began using micropayments and BSV’s native capabilities to reward gamers for playing casual games using a leaderboard. DePinto harkens back to the time of arcade games. Back then, the reward was simply seeing your name etched on a leaderboard. However, Haste Arcade has made it so that if you finish on a leaderboard, you get a cut of every payment made by other players. This is called Instant Leaderboard Payouts.
DePinto and his partner on another venture—Barpay—saw the utility of Bitcoin and blockchain technology early. Being in a business that relied on credit card processing, they knew only too well about its problems, and they couldn’t fathom how everyone else was overlooking the revolutionary potential of this technology. They built Haste to demonstrate this utility and the potential for micropayments.
The evolution of games on Haste Arcade
DePinto reflects on how Haste Arcade started with just one simple game called Haste. While some people joke about this game today, DePinto still thinks it was brilliant. After launching it, they proceeded without a real plan or strategy and kept adding new games.
After a while, they brought on a small team and accepted some venture capital. This led to more recent games like Monster Bombs. This 3D game implements non-fungible tokens (NFTs), which DePinto hopes will serve as a demonstration for major league baseball teams and others to see the potential for utility NFTs linked to jerseys and more.
Utility NFTs and the way things are headed
Henslee picks up on this point about the NFTs and says it’s obvious this is the way things are going with the ‘Metaverse.’ He asks DePinto what the future of NFTs is on the Haste platform.
DePinto says first that they want to be able to utilize these NFTs and collectibles in more than just one game. He gives the example of buying balls in the game Jump and carrying those across to Monster Bombs, where they’ll be pitched to you. The ability to transfer NFTs is the key here. DePinto says this seems “obvious” and wonders why he shouldn’t be able to transfer skins between games.
For DePinto, taking the hard work out of making this a reality is the key to talking to big brands and franchises. They’ll want control over the content, so Haste’s job is to make it do the heavy lifting for them.
Why scaling is important in all of this
Henslee notes that when dealing with franchises and businesses worth hundreds of millions of dollars, there’s no tolerance for error or tech that doesn’t work. He rightly points out that transactions must work with near certainty and the fees have to be low. This is when the rubber meets the road, and the narratives in ‘crypto’ stop mattering, he says.
DePinto agrees, saying that brands like the New York Yankees don’t take risks. The tech they use to put something out has to be proven. From Haste’s standpoint, BSV is the only one that is going to be able to scale and allow them to do what they want to.
Reskinning games and Take It NFT
Henslee picks up on a point DePinto made earlier. He asks if Haste plans to allow brands to reskin existing games and platforms.
DePinto says it’s one of many things they want to do. He says that in the near future, Haste will allow third parties to plug in and host their own arcade experience. This could involve simply reskinning the games, such as by allowing them to change the Monster Bombs stadium into the Yankee Stadium or reskinning the arcade itself to brand it. This should be a reality within the next six to 12 months.
Speaking about the longer term, DePinto says that having Take It NFT as the marketplace for the arcade itself. He says that JPEGs are just the start, and this justifies its existence as a standalone platform for utility NFTs. There are still a few things to be worked out, such as curation, before it’s ready for prime time.
The next Haste hackathon
Henslee notes that it has been a while since the last hackathon and asks when the next one might happen.
DePinto says they would have liked it if it had already happened, but there are a few minor issues, such as that casual game developers aren’t necessarily familiar with building games that are server authoritative. Since Haste’s games involve earning money, this is essential and can’t be overlooked.
As a result, DePinto wants to hold off until there are better tools and instructions on their end.
“Until we have that done, we’re not comfortable having another big game dev competition,” he says.
After the next competition occurs, probably early next year, they’ll likely invite more game developers onto the platform. There will also be regular new games from Haste itself in the future.
On using Bitcoin vs stablecoins
Across the BSV ecosystem, there’s been much debate about using BSV or letting it fade into the background while using stablecoins to make it psychologically easier to onboard users.
DePinto says there’s been a lot of debate about this within the Haste team, and his personal view is that stablecoins like USDC could really help onboard users. Even though he wants to use BSV for everything, he thinks it’s a useful stepping stone.
This decision comes down to who the market is. DePinto notes that Haste Arcade is getting lots of signups and free users, but at some point, they’re failing to convert them to money players. He believes they’re primarily interested in earning dollars and can’t yet make the psychological leap to using volatile BSV tokens. He also notes there’s an education gap that needs to be bridged to teach people how to buy BSV tokens in HandCash and get comfortable doing so.
DePinto believes part of the solution is incentivizing people to download wallets like HandCash. He gives the example of a character in a game making a choice that leads to them receiving a payment for which they have to download HandCash to receive it. This makes it a reward rather than an obligation.
Watch: The BSV Global Blockchain Convention panel, Small Payments, Big Fun: Micropayments for Casual Games
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