Blockchain meets minesweeper
Blockchain meets an old favorite The biggest obstacle that blockchain technology faces is that it’s difficult for the general public to understand. The HeroRats game tries to solve this problem by incorporating blockchain into an all-time classic: minesweeper. The game is offered through a decentralized application (DApp), which uses the IOST blockchain platform to run applications on a distributed system. The user interface and experience is easy to use, even for those who don’t know anything about blockchain. Users can play the game without installation online on their computer or phone. Unlike other blockchain-based games such as EOS games, which require account purchases or other steps such as recording private and public keys, HeroRats users are able to simply login through their social media accounts and play. A blatant rip-off? Although on the surface, the game seems like a rip-off of the familiar minesweeper game, HeroRats is designed to use blockchain in a user-friendly way, making it accessible to all. There is no steep learning curve and users can also purchase game tokens through PayPal or their credit card. Why play a game that is already widely available? The developers have provided two incentives for users to play the game: rewards and donations. If users win in the game, they are provided a small amount of IOST tokens, even if they play for free. Users can also bet on the results to reap a greater award. There are five difficulty levels in the game and the rewards only get higher. Players receive 0.01 IOST if they win at level 1, in free mode, which translates to around 0.1 won as of Aug. 23. Rewards get higher per level — 0.02 IOST in level 2, 0.1 IOST in level 3, 0.2 IOST in level 4 and 0.33 IOST in level 5. The rewards get even higher in paid mode. After an entrance fee of around 45 won at level 1, players receive 3 IOST per win. At level 2, the entrance fee rises to 75 won, but the reward also increases to 9.95 IOST, while at level 3, the fee is at 90 won and the reward is around 400 won. At level 4, the fee rises to 165 won and reward to 800 won, and at the highest level the fee sits at 225 won and the reward at 2,700 won. It’s not a bad deal for expert minesweepers. Sweeping for real mines The HeroRats minesweeper game also helps with the real world demining efforts. A certain portion of the entrance fee from the paid mode of the game is donated to the Apopo Foundation, a non-profit organization that uses trained giant rats to find mines in war-torn areas.