Reviews - Updated on April 12, 2022

In 2008, Destiny.Games launched its first multiplayer browser game, Botva Online. The project proved to be quite good and served as the basis for the growth and development of the company. Since then, Destiny.Games has launched games like Music Wars, TERA Online, Zula, and is now planning to create a next-generation digital distribution platform called The Abyss.

What is so innovative about it? The fact is that in the light of the development of the cryptocurrency market and blockchain technology, the developers decided that the main platform services would be based on their own token. The company has already conducted a DAICO (new fundraising model) sale of a fixed number of new units of cryptocurrency to investors, raising $15 million, and is now actively developing the platform.

In order to understand what The Abyss is, who is interested in it, and whether it is worth buying tokens at a low price in advance, we talked with Vladimir Kurochkin, President of Destiny.Games.

Blockchain vs. Steam - Interview with The Abyss and Kingsoft Cloud

Vladimir Kurochkin, President of Destiny.Games.

: Vladimir, tell us why you decided to create such a platform.

Vladimir Kurochkin: We have set ourselves an ambitious goal – to replace or defeat Steam.

SG: Wow! Really ambitious.

VK: Yes, you are right. We really want to make something similar to Steam, where everyone can get the already familiar set of services, but with innovative ideas and solutions to the problems of other platforms. Surely every developer will have complaints about how Steam works, and almost every player also has questions about this site.

SG: What, for example?

VK: For example, it is very inconvenient for us as developers to work in a fiat payment system, where it is still not clear how to effectively deal with fraud. It is not clear how a small indie developer can get money.

This is from the perspective of the developer. If you look from the position of the player, then everything is subjective. We, for example, do not like the mechanisms of social interaction on the platform, and we would like to change them. The design can also be improved. We would like to find an opponent or create a tournament, for example, in “Civilization”, without going beyond the platform. These are the little things we want to add. We ourselves are players and regularly face similar problems. This is how the idea for The Abyss came about.

We are well aware that entering the cryptocurrency industry is quite difficult right now. Therefore, we do not abandon the classic fiat currencies. Each user will be able to make purchases in his usual way, for example, with a bank card.

Blockchain vs. Steam - Interview with The Abyss and Kingsoft Cloud
Cryptocurrencies have a big advantage. We are working on creating a five-level referral system. At first, many were skeptical about it, but now we see how effective and in demand it is. People get carried away with this mechanism, invite their comrades and receive income from their payments. With fiat currency, such a system cannot be implemented, because then the player would have to go to our office and sign an agreement so that we pay him $10. Who is interested? And here you get real cryptocurrency. And when you see tokens in your account and understand that their price is growing on the market, you realize that they are worth real money. The most difficult thing here is to register an electronic wallet, following certain steps for this. At first, it’s all lazy and tight, but after going through all the procedures, you immediately find yourself in the world of cryptocurrencies with all its advantages. We believe in the development of cryptoeconomics and want to become a kind of bridge to the cryptocurrency industry for users. When this entire area grows, we will need infrastructure services where it will be possible to use understandable things in the usual manner, but in the new economic realities.

Cryptocurrency, by the way, has one more plus – when working with it, we save money on costs, on transactions, commissions from bank transfers and legal services. This allows us to get significant savings and direct 10% of each payment to fund the referral system. The rest of the funds from the referral program go to the Reward Bank, from where the funds are distributed according to motivational programs.

Blockchain vs. Steam - Interview with The Abyss and Kingsoft Cloud
SG: All this sounds really tempting, but how do you plan to attract the average player who buys only one or two games a month or plays Counter-Strike: Global Offensive or Dota 2 in the evenings? For them, Steam is a familiar and convenient platform.

VK: It’s like a vicious circle. Any new platform that enters the market needs an audience that needs big games. Big games need big audiences. This circle needs to be broken. For us, the primary task is to make a high-quality and convenient service that will be at least as good as Steam. We believe it’s easy. As a maximum, it should be many times better. Then the player will receive a platform where he can earn cryptocurrency by performing the same actions as on Steam.

We also offer the user a new social service. With the help of cryptocurrency, we can take a completely different look at guilds, clans and other types of social interaction within the platform. For example, part of the same 10% that goes to the referral system, we reward users for creating content. The better the stream, review, guide, even screenshot, the more attention it attracts. The more payments the platform receives and, accordingly, the more we give back to users who create this content.

The question is, how to evaluate the quality of content? The banal number of “likes” will not work here. We propose to evaluate the “strength” of clans and the people who are members of them. The more people and tokens they have in their treasury, the greater their influence in terms of social interaction and the more weight their “likes” will have.

Blockchain vs. Steam - Interview with The Abyss and Kingsoft Cloud
SG: It seems that if the strength of a clan is measured by the number of people in it, then there will be a lot of problems with bots. How do you plan to solve them?

VK: Of course, if there is one moneybag and a bunch of bots in the clan, then the entire amount of his electronic wallet will be divided between his “blanks”. We have a dynamic evaluation system. Clan audience must be active. What is the easiest way to earn tokens? Buy? Yes, you can, but it’s expensive. It will be much easier to enter the platform, perform some actions and earn achievements for it, trade skins and game items at the auction, and invite friends, receiving referral payments from their transactions. Thus, the higher the activity of your clan, the more powerful it is. So the strength of the clan is determined by the tokens, not the number of members. Tokens can be withdrawn from the platform to a cryptocurrency wallet and then exchanged for real money.

SG: Have you thought about exclusive games for your platform? Without them, especially without large ones, it will be difficult to lure the same Steam user.

VK: Of course, we thought. Our idea has already been highly appreciated by indie developers. Many want to get on the platform because the game itself can be part of the referral system. If the project attracts new users to the platform, then its developers will receive a percentage of their payments in the same way. Companies that will be the first to place their projects on the platform will have an advantage, as they will immediately be able to attract players and quickly build their referral networks.

At the same time, we understand that if only indie developers are present on the platform, then we will be associated exclusively with them. We can’t afford that if we want to compete with Steam. We need big titles that will bring new users, and to attract them, we do two things.

First, we are now actively negotiating with large companies and are looking for opportunities to become not just a publishing platform, but full-fledged partners who will help each other.

Secondly, we have already entered into an agreement with Xsolla, which helps us create a mechanism for easy migration of games from other platforms to The Abyss. Roughly speaking, any developer, having spent just a couple of hours, can simply transfer his game to our platform.

SG: What projects are you focusing on? For game services?

VK: Our main focus is shareware MMO games, but at the same time we do not refuse browser games or some titles with a pay-to-play business model.

Blockchain vs. Steam - Interview with The Abyss and Kingsoft Cloud
SG: To be honest, I associate free-to-play and browser games more with time-killers than with games as art that come out every five years, but make it so noisy that the industry is then shaken by more than one year. Will there be such projects on your platform?

VK: We fully support the idea that games are art, and we are completely open to all developers. We are developers ourselves and we remember well how hard it is to launch for the first time. That’s why we honestly want to help. As for large companies, we will not stand aside and wait for them to come to us. We ourselves will come to them with our proposals. We are well aware that the time spent, legal transparency, and the presence of a solvent audience are important for such developers. We are just going to solve these three tasks, and if we do this, then I am sure that large companies will not stand aside.

***

Of course, The Abyss is unlikely to beat Steam, which already has a huge user base. However, Destiny.Games has every chance to force Valve to make room – so far no one in the world has come up with a single convenient game client for MMO projects, and they have a multi-million audience.

Most of this audience is concentrated in the Asian market, which is now actively developing. To reach its full potential, The Abyss has partnered with Kingsoft Cloud, a division of the Chinese tech giant. In exchange for providing the technology foundation and resources, Destiny.Games is helping Kingsoft enter the Eastern European market.

The Abyss invited Chinese colleagues to DevGAMM Moscow 2018, where they were able to communicate with local companies – Playrix, Appodeal, Vizor Games and others. We did not stand aside either – we asked a few questions to Mr. Zhu Jiang, the head of the blockchain division of Kingsoft Cloud.

Blockchain vs. Steam - Interview with The Abyss and Kingsoft Cloud
SG: Tell us what your company does.

Zhu Jiang: Kingsoft Cloud provides a variety of cloud solutions for game developers and the industry as a whole. Now we are concentrating on working with blockchain technology.

SG: And how will this technology help the gaming industry?

CZ: We believe that the blockchain will be able to refresh the gaming industry. For example, the possession of game items in playgrounds based on this technology will be really protected. Now you are essentially running around with empty pixels in your hands, which are actually concentrated in the hands of the developer and can be deleted, blocked or stolen at any time. In our case, your property really belongs to you – it is recorded in a decentralized system, and only you have all the keys. Blockchain can also provide new APIs and software development kits for developers. Another advantage is that all transactions and transfers carried out by the publisher, due to the properties of the blockchain and its distributed system, will be visible to all players, which will allow building trust between them.

Blockchain vs. Steam - Interview with The Abyss and Kingsoft Cloud
SG: Are there other ways to apply the technology?

CZ: Yes, of course. For example, blockchain can help virtual gambling like poker or casinos. The player cannot predict the number or the card drawn from the deck in advance, but the program can. Naturally, in the event of a loss, the player will suspect cheating. Blockchain will help such platforms to confirm the randomness of the outcome, thereby raising the player’s trust to a new level.

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