The limits of action verification in blockchain games

  • (1) there are scaling issues, which may not be so easily solved by sharded application-specific state machines; and
  • (2) not all actions can be neatly captured as a set of rules with a clear set of checks.

Engineering and economics

While distributed consensus in a system is a powerful way to check the legality of actions, it may be an overly-engineered approach to take. Taking a probabilistic approach rather than a deterministic approach may be a reasonable trade off.

Probably safe to link to this Bitcoin logo ;-) (source)

Subjectivity: the impossibility of verifying all actions?

With simple games it is easy to verify actions, but for complex games it may not always be possible.

Despite the weird golden hue, we still these are playing cards (Source)
Dark area of a map in CounterStrike (source)

Preventing cheating with remote attestation

One of my shower thoughts last week on this topic made me think of the Golem project. Aren’t they working on the problem of consensually verifying the execution of arbitrary code?

https://golem.network
Roadmap snippet for Hoard Exchange (Source)

Invitation for feedback

I love getting feedback on my articles. Feel free to create a reply here on Medium, or reach out to me on Twitter: @EAThomson.

About me

Currently, I work at the Web3 Foundation, covering numerous responsibilities (such as grants, communications, and collaboration). This blog is of a personal nature. It just so happens that my hobby aligns with work.

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