Iskra: The Future of Play
Official Iskra Whitepaper v.1.4.1
Blockchain gaming is a new concept for many gamers and game studios alike. It represents a fundamental paradigm shift in how games are developed and enjoyed. Until now, the inextricable link between blockchain-based games and crypto assets has deterred many developers from entering this immature market. Some of them believed blockchain games had a long way to go to achieve any real level of popularity and were unwilling to take the risk and pioneer the technology. Contrary to their prediction, however, the market has reacted swiftly. Most notably, tech-savvy young crypto enthusiasts have quickly entered the blockchain gaming space.
Some of the earliest attempts at integrating blockchain technology into gaming, such as Axie Infinity, Mir 4, and Town Star, proved massive hits. This came as a shock to many traditional game developers who viewed the quality of these games as substandard. Many studios have been missing what sets blockchain games apart. Blockchain games are a new genre written in a very different grammar, where gamers have immutable ownership and full control over their in-game assets and trade them freely outside the game.
For most of gaming history, developers have followed a centralized model—controlling both the in-game economy and game assets collected by gamers. So it is natural for them to feel wary of the rise of blockchain gaming, already beginning to turn the tables and shape a more equitable player-centric space.
Play-to-earn gaming is the next defining moment in the evolution of gaming. Before blockchain, users could not gain tangible rewards through playing games. With the creation of NFTs and blockchain technology, users can now generate financial reward by earning various game assets which can be sold on marketplaces for cryptocurrency. Current play-to-earn gaming creates financial rewards for users but provides no fun or entertainment. We have flipped the paradigm on its head by transitioning from a “play-to-earn” mindset to a “play-and-earn” mindset which combines financial rewards with a fun gaming experience.
Iskra is a blockchain gaming hub that brings together gamers and game studios. Our platform allows gamers to explore and enjoy quality blockchain games and create their own community. Interested users will have the opportunity to explore new game projects for the first time through our Launchpad. Users can also freely trade in-game tokens and other in-game assets minted as non-fungible tokens (NFTs) outside the game.
Game studios, for their part, can utilize various resources provided by Iskra to build games of all genres including, but not limited to, TCG, Strategy, Collectible and MMORPG. As such, we provide the full support necessary for the development and operation of blockchain games, from funding and infrastructure to a token economy and a passionate community.
We have a simple but powerful philosophy: Provide a decentralized platform based on community-led governance. As the community grows, our platform will expand and achieve a higher level of decentralization. The community is empowered to lead key decisions around the platform and ecosystem governance, including the launch of new games, fee pricing and the development of new services. Also, most of the fees collected by the platform are distributed back to the community. Under a highly sophisticated set of mid- to long-term strategies developed by Iskra, the platform is designed to ultimately achieve complete decentralization.
We consider ourselves both a Business Team and a Technical Team, each with deep blockchain and gaming expertise who bring a wide range of experience and insight. Our team members come from leading names such as LINE, Disney, Krust, ICONLOOP, Netmarble and Nexon. Our key backers include “diamond hands" like the Kakao Group(Krust, Kakao Ventures, Metabora), Netmarble and Wemade etc. In short, we are a team of veteran blockchain and gaming professionals—united by a mission to build a truly evolutionary platform for blockchain gaming that is driven by an empowered community.
Problem for Gamers Today, the gaming industry is a one sided market where studios produce and distribute games to the public who pay for an 'experience', in most cases a "one-and-done" transaction. There are no mechanisms for additional rewards or value for gamers who consume the game and because there is high risk to game studios in putting up significant capital to produce it, game developers and publishers end up creating highly concentrated oligopolies to protect their investments.
Play-to-earn gaming is an innovation addressing the ownership and future value problem, and has proved to be increasingly popular. But as the segment matures, growing pains reveal experiences that are reduced to a financial gain, making it feel like a areal grind, and in some sense, a “job".
Problem for Game Developers Game developers face the issue of integrating blockchain technology into their current products or future projects. The vast amounts of varying blockchains, wallets, exchanges and bridges makes it difficult to pick the best one and connect them all to one seamless platform. Game developers must also figure out how to target crypto gamers, which is a completely new target persona.
Redefining game publishing Our platform enables game developers to reach the Web3 community and benefit from little to no costs for distribution. The community is rewarded with tokens for engaging on the platforms.
Best Games Our game acquisition strategy focuses on development teams with a track record of game balance and successful game servicing. After that is established, we work with the studio to adapt their project into a rich token economy. We will also deploy our game alliance fund to discover, collaborate or acquire IP and game talent to make its vision a reality.
Scalable Tokenomic Solutions We provide developers a platform solution for blockchain services such as wallets, bridges, exchanges, etc., and can help develop rich token economies that make their games both enjoyable and rewarding. For existing Web3 developers, we provide an established community to scale projects quickly, while offering rich ecosystem incentives for increased engagement.
We plan to allocate up to 100% of all the platform value generated (from fees, royalties, etc.) into the Community Rewards Pool, which is then the returned to community stakeholders (players, developers, Iskra) based on their participation (running a network node, governance staking, platform activity etc.) to align interests and ensure a long-term and sustainable ecosystem.
IMPORTANT: This paper is subject to, and should be interpreted in light of, important disclaimers which appear at the end of this paper. Please carefully review those disclaimers and use the technology at your own risk, and do not depend on this paper for making any important decisions. This paper is written as a vision for the platform, and the actual implementation and details may be modified due to policy decisions or external factors that are outside of the team's control. Refer to the Roadmap for updates on implementation and development.