Axie Infinity, an Ethereum game where you collect, breed, and battle digital pets, has been taking the blockchain gaming world by storm this year.
Indeed, not only has Axie Infinity become the biggest and most popular game in the cryptoeconomy right now, it’s also one of Ethereum’s most used decentralized apps, period.
That’s why heads turned this week when the Axie Infinity team, one of the premier projects in the non-fungible token (NFT) ecosystem, revealed it was integrating with Chainlink, the reigning oracle giant powering wide swathes of Ethereum’s booming decentralized finance (DeFi) sector.
An Exciting Meld
On Monday, Nov. 11th, the Axie Infinity team announced it would be integrating with Chainlink’s tech in various ways.
First, some context: Axie Infinity is underpinned by Ethereum smart contracts, which need extra help when it comes to interacting with data external to the Ethereum blockchain (i.e. off-chain data). Smart contracts are only as good as the data they rely on, so Chainlink gives projects a way to rely on off-chain data in decentralized and trustless fashion.
To start, the game’s builders said they’d begin by integrating Chainlink’s ETH/USD Price Reference Data into the franchise’s native marketplace, where Axie pets and other assets can be traded among players.
As for why this price feed is ideal for Axie Infinity, the team said:
“Currently, we’re getting our price feeds from centralized servers which can go down and be disrupted. With Chainlink price feeds, we can ensure 100% uptime for our marketplace’s all-important ETH/USD price feed. We feel confident integrating this key exchange rate via Chainlink because it’s secured by a decentralized network of high-quality oracle nodes that provide accurate price data sourced from a variety of excellent off-chain data aggregators.”
Oracles aren’t the only helpful tool in Chainlink’s ever-growing wheelhouse. Among the newest and most interesting solutions the decentralized oracle project has put forward is Chainlink VRF, an on-chain randomness tool.
In the past, blockchain projects that wanted randomness (e.g. for games, gambling outcomes, etc.) had to rely on pseudo-random number generators, which are ultimately gameable. What’s been needed in the space is a verifiably random on-chain randomness generator, which is exactly what Chainlink VRF is.
As such, the Axie Infinity team noted they’ll be using the solution to generate Origin Axies (i.e. rare pets in the game) via Axie Origin Coins (AOC). The rarest traits in the game are Mystic parts, so Chainlink VRF will soon be used to determine whether generated Origin Axies are born with Mystic traits and so forth. The project explained:
“We selected Chainlink VRF because it provides a highly secure source of randomness that is permissionless and auditable on-chain by all users. This provides users with cryptographic proof that all random elements are provably fair, and cannot be manipulated by our team or any external entities.”
What Comes Next
Looking ahead, one of the biggest things coming up on Axie Infinity’s roadmap is the deployment of the Ronin sidechain, an in-house scaling solution the game’s creators are working on to take the granchise to the masses.
Accordingly, Axie Infinity confirmed that the project would be “integrating Chainlink VRF functionality into more Axie-related smart contracts” once the Ronin sidechain was deployed in the wild.
From that, we can take it that the collaboration between these two major blockchain projects is only just beginning, which bodes well for mutualistic advances fostered by the two efforts going forward.
“We believe we have only scratched the surface in how external data can be incorporated in Axie to enhance gameplay and the user experience,” Axie Infinity’s devs said.