Crypto gaming ecosystem Treasure had options. Built on Arbitrum, the platform—which currently spans 15 games—attracted proposals from the Optimism, zkSync, and SKALE teams in recent weeks to migrate to another Ethereum scaling network.
Instead, Treasure intends to double down on Arbitrum. This week, the ecosystem’s core team announced plans to launch a Treasure Chain built on Arbitrum and using its existing MAGIC token to pay for gas, with a web of “Infinity Chains” that can power the various games being built around Treasure.
Under the proposed plan, which Treasure’s DAO still has to approve (with a vote planned for Monday, February 12), Arbitrum developer Offchain Labs will build out the Treasure Chain—a custom Ethereum layer-2 scaling network—that will then enable game creators to deploy their own layer-3 Infinity Chains that orbit it.
“This is really just an evolution of our vision at Treasure, with the history of us being one of the earliest projects to build on Arbitrum,” co-founder Karel Vuong explained to Decrypt’s GG. “The natural next step for us was to launch towards our own chain. Our ambition is really to build this gaming and entertainment powerhouse that’s built and owned by everyone.”
𝗜𝗻𝘁𝗿𝗼𝗱𝘂𝗰𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗧𝗿𝗲𝗮𝘀𝘂𝗿𝗲: 𝗜𝗻𝗳𝗶𝗻𝗶𝘁𝘆 𝗖𝗵𝗮𝗶𝗻𝘀 ✨
The litepaper for the Treasure Chain is here!
This expands upon our vision to build an end-to-end gaming ecosystem. Everything connected by $MAGIC, powering infinite games. ♾️https://t.co/ZwNbg25H8l pic.twitter.com/otcgfdNzbp
— Treasure (@Treasure_DAO) February 5, 2024
We’ve seen other games—like Pixels, Pirate Nation, and Crypto Unicorns—hop chains (or make plans to) in recent months, so what convinced Treasure to stick with Arbitrum?
Vuong pointed to what they saw as deficiencies with rival proposals, whether it’s the technical makeup (in the case of Optimism) or a perceived lack of traction with users (as with zkSync). Arbitrum has specific functionality that Treasure needs, he added, and they’ve built up a user base in that ecosystem. On top of that, Treasure and Offchain Labs already have a bond.
“We’ve been in the trenches together since the days where Arbitrum gaming was in its infancy,” said Offchain Labs Chief Strategy Officer A.J. Warner. “People only thought about Arbitrum as a DeFi-focused environment.”
That’s no longer the case. Treasure’s own rise helped kick-start that evolution, with a growing list of games including The Beacon, Mighty Action Heroes, and Kaiju Cards. More recently, Arbitrum has seen the rise of Xai, a layer-3 gaming chain that held an airdrop in January and will begin rolling out games in the coming months.
Vuong and Warner both said they see potential for interoperability and collaboration across the Arbitrum gaming space, though Warner said that they’re still “looking at the best ways to do it securely without compromising.” As he noted, bridges between chains tend to be susceptible to attacks, as seen with the Ronin Network’s $622 million bridge exploit in 2022.
If Treasure’s DAO approves the proposed plan, then the core team aims to get the Treasure Chain testnet launched by the end of this quarter, with a mainnet launch in Q3 2024.
Vuong sees an array of potential benefits to the plan, including enhanced cohesion across the Treasure ecosystem, enhanced utility for the MAGIC governance token, and the ability to enforce creator royalty settings on NFT sales. For Treasure, too, it’s an opportunity to take its growing toolset for game developers and build something even bigger with it.
“We’re seeing this opportunity to build new IP as a decentralized game publisher,” Vuong said, “almost like a new Marvel Cinematic Universe, but one that is truly bottom-up.”
Edited by Ryan Ozawa.