Editor’s Notes: This article is based on Huang Xiang’s speech at the Global 2018 HTML5 Blockchain Gaming Summit
Presenter: Huang Xiang, Co-Founder of Gala Sports and Mass Grid
Hello Everyone! Thanks to the organizer for giving me this opportunity to discuss about blockchain and sports games with everyone here.
I am Huang Xiang, I graduated from Beijing University in Digital Art, previously I worked in Denmark and Germany, doing 3D graphic design and working as a 3D engine engineer.
1 | MLGB这个名字曾让我们非常苦闷
1 | MLGB — An annoying name
Four years ago, I co-founded Gala Sports and since then have been it’s CTO. Last year, we started the MLGB project (The project is now called Mass Grid, shortened to MGD, but the project started as MLGB). I am one of the person behind the MLGB project dealing with it’s ups and downs.
先给大家说一下GalaSports，它现在是中国第二大的体育游戏公司，跟NBA、国际足联、皇马、巴萨、拜仁等十多家俱乐部有广泛地合作，现在线上有3款主要产品 — — 足球大师、冠军中超、NBA篮球大师。
First, let me introduce Gala Sports, at the moment we are the second biggest sports game company in China. We have worked and cooperated with the NBA, international renowned football clubs, such as Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich and many others. At the moment, we have three games out Football Master, CSL Champions and NBA Basketball Master.
Currently with our three games combined, we have more than 1 million users, multi-million dollar monthly revenue. These games are published in over 100 countries and available on mobile, PC and the internet.
Back to MLGB, the actual formal name of the project is Mass Grid. When we created the project, we wanted to make a satire of the current ICO craze and at the same time we created an official website and promotional events on mobile.
Our first promotional image, “Modern Performance Artwork”, “Giveaway” and other names brought the spotlight on us at Mass Grid.
We didn’t imagine that our website would have any visitors, but on the contrary the promotion caught fire. After one hour, the we had over 1,000,000 page views. Everyone associated us with MLGB and then CCTV did a news report on us breaking the law.
我们内心其实是非常苦闷的，因为我们正式的名称 — — MassGrid彻底被颠覆掉了。
We were very annoyed of the outcome of the situation, because our formal project name(Mass Grid) was completely lost in the storm.
2 | 98%的显卡计算资源被浪费
2 | 98% of the GPU Resources Are Wasted
我们做这个事缘于一篇学术论文，2017年2月Guanghui Lan、Soomin Lee、Yi Zhou等撰写的Communication-Efficient Algorithms for Decentralized and Stochastic Optimization。翻译过来就是：一种节点间高效率通信的神经网络训练随机梯度下降优化算法，他用数学证明了在节点之间能并行的异步高效通讯可以用来进行神经网络的训练。
We have published a research paper on the subject entitled “Communication-Efficient Algorithms for Decentralized and Stochastic Optimization” by Guanghui Lan, Soomin Lee and Yi Zhou. They proved mathematically that asynchronous and efficient communications between nodes can be used to train neural networks.
This paper solves 3 problems, making large scale AI parallel computing possible. The algorithms listed in this paper can achieve greater and deeper AI training. It has three advantages: decentralization, low data transmission, and achieve high efficiency and unlimited scaling
The current world record for a AI training belongs to Facebook when they utilized 2000 GPU cards. And the biggest multi-layered neural network belong to Microsoft with a network that is 180 layers deep.
There is an interesting phenomenon happening here, we discovered that there were more than 8 million graphic cards mining cryptocurrency doing POW calculations and there were less than 100,000 cards being used for online AI training. This means there is a huge resources of mining and it is the best computational resource that humanity has invented, used to do POW computing.
We have already done one year of experimentation and achieved 3 goals.
o We have more than 30 nodes in the lab doing this right now, running and ready to be deployed.
o Our network has achieved synchronization without the need for a central server. All previous AI training required synchronization to a central server. Now it is possible to perform simultaneous decentralized training.
o It is very possible that in a short time we will be able to eclipse Facebook’s world record of 2000 graphic cards.
3 | ETH撸猫不是真正的游戏
3 | ETH CryptoKitties Is Not a Real Game
From our point of view making games, games have three indispensable points: There needs to be challenges, users need to be able to complete the challenges and the users must be rewarded for their accomplishing the challenges.
For example, there are many challenges. Storyline challenges, like Tomb Raider; PVP challenges, such as PUBG; reach higher levels, Tetris; Completing the game, eliminating opponents, winning, getting higher scores, like Subway Surfers.
Looking at these three points, CryptoKitties don’t have challenges, users can’t complete them obviously, there are only rewards. So CryptoKitties, in my opinion has two goals; 1. CryptoKitties are chracterized assets 2. Users are trying to profit from each other by trading.
But having introduce an anthropomorphic concept into the feeling deprived cryptocurrency world is an interesting concept, so this made them the first to capture attention in the 2017 cryptocurrency boom.
4 | 区块链游戏：低投入，高回报，刚起步
4 |Game on Blockchain: Low Investment, High Returns, Just the Start
Games are a complex project, combining art and technology together on a large scale. So how to make blockchain games more interesting? Not only does it need an international perspective but also good plots, characters, scenes, and tacticals setting, as well a good gameplay and competitions.
Before I came here, my colleagues from our company did some research. How many people were playing blockchain games? Who are the users of the blockchain games? What is the number of users of blockchain games? And, we looked at the top blockchain products in China and found out that there are about 1 million active users this year, mainly playing the top 10 games.
Users are generally young male, working in the IT or finance and securities industries. They are risk takers, high-net worth individuals and have a habit of spending more than average on games. Also an interesting note, is that many of them have experience the cryptocurrency boom and have lots of ETH and altcoins on hand. A surprise among this research was that there are a disproportionate high amount of middle-age women in China using cryptocurrency and their purchasing power is higher than most other groups.
One of my good friends has published a game on blockchain, let’s see the data versus the game on mobile.
The evolution of mobile games have been through various stages, such as MUD games, stand-alone, casual, networked games and now online games. The mobile gaming industry in 10 years has had huge changes from small independent studio to now giant game companies. And if you look at its that development and look at the blockchain technology, it is only the beginning.
Gala Sports has already published three games, Football Master, CSL Champions and NBA Basketball Master. We are preparing to put those game on the blockchain in the coming months and once we payments have started to introduce official licenses such as FIFA, CSL and the NBA, making light versions of those games.
We hope to grow with the Egretia project and be able to make a good start for games on blockchain.
Thank you everyone.