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FunFair.io is a gaming platform powered by Ethereum. The company is headquartered in Singapore and keeps offices in London. Founded by Jez San, Jeremy Longley, and Oliver Hopton in 2017, FunFair is positioned to become the first blockchain casino software to break into the mass online gaming market.
For those familiar with blockchain technology, please skip to FunFair Platform Games and Software. For those who aren't sure how Ethereum differs from the Bitcoin blockchain please read on.
Ethereum is based on blockchain technology, much like the digital currency Bitcoin is. But instead of being a one-trick-pony, only capable of handling digital currencies, the blockchain behind Ethereum is focused on running program code for any decentralized application. The FunFair gaming platform and its constituent parts are like a software program that happens to operate on the Ethereum blockchain, rather than on a central server or your desktop MAC or PC.
The FunFair casino platform is based on Ethereum's smart contracts. A smart contract is simply a computer code used to exchange things of value. FunFair has developed a payment channel called the "Fate Channel". It is a self-executing program that happens off the blockchain and handles casino betting transactions and a lot more. The only activities that occur on the actual blockchain are opening the channel and closing it.
This makes FunFair the first platform in operation to execute casino transactions at the speed online players are accustomed to. Players can make hundreds or even thousands of transactions (bets) without waiting for block confirmations on every bet. It also greatly reduces fees, because once you are transacting in FunFair's Fate Channel "FUN" tokens you are no longer paying a middleman each time you make a bet, which is the case with all other Ethereum casinos running today.
Players only transact on the Ethereum blockchain to open a channel to FunFair and then again to settle. All else is handled within FunFair. The total cost to open and close the Ethereum channel is about a dollar. This costs casinos and players a lot less than credit card transactions and there is no risk of chargeback or fraud. In fact, players don't actually deposit into the casino account, losing control of their own funds - they simply play the games directly from their own cash wallet on the FunFair platform.
Games and Software
FunFair has developed the technology and will license the platform to white label affiliates. As the blockchain is a public ledger and the actual games happen inside an application that resides on the blockchain, it is impossible for the casino application to cheat. It is also impossible for players to cheat the casino app. A player no longer has to wonder if the results they see on their screen and in their account balance reflect exactly what the random number generator dictated.
FunFair offers high-quality 3D games built in HTML5 so they are accessible on any desktop browser or mobile device. If you recognized one of the founder's names, you aren't alone. Jez San was the creator of PKR.com, the first virtual reality poker room way back in 2006. HTML5 markup language makes it possible to offer realistic 3D gaming to everyone.
While the inaugural game suite is still under development, the company already offers video and classic slots, craps, blackjack, roulette, and baccarat. Demo versions of roulette, slots, and baccarat are already available on the Ethereum network. MetaMask is a Chrome plugin you can use to access the network in your regular browser. Firefox users can download an extension as well, but it's not quite as refined yet as the Chrome version.
The first slot machine we tried was called "To The Stars". After entering a 3D environment, we chose the machine and got it to load without any trouble. The game is set on a 5x3 grid in a futuristic virtual cabinet. The symbols are rendered with 3D lighting and shadows, and are of course, space-based. Flying Saucers, Aliens Wilds, Ray Guns, an HAL-like computer a Golden Rocketship and the ship's Captain are the highest paying symbols. Most importantly, the game functions perfectly. It loaded quickly and once we began to play, there was no lag, nothing hiccuped or jittered.
The English Roulette game was simply stunning - as good as anything offered by Microgaming, Playtech or any of the other online casino software leaders. The wheel and ball mechanics were impressive. The baccarat table was flawless as well. The user interface is uncluttered, graphics are crisp and clear, and gameplay was simply a joy. It's exciting to think of a casino game program operating on the blockchain instead of inside some black box in a closet somewhere in Curacao.
We should caution that if you try the demo games with the local browser option rather than on the blockchain, they could take a while to load. That's because they will be operating locally. While you will be able to experience the games themselves, you won't get a feel for just how fast the platform delivers.
As the games weren't actually deployed yet for real money play when we reviewed the platform, we didn't get a chance to test them with real ether (Ξ or ETH) but considering the fact that betting takes place inside the Fate Channel, rather than constantly accessing the Ethereum blockchain, that isn't important. The FUN tokens surely transact as quickly as the demo ETH do.
Some people will be drawn to casinos operating on the FunFair platform because they want a provably fair casino game that cannot be manipulated. Others will play because they simply enjoy cryptocurrency. Many, who have been burned by unscrupulous online operators who seem to think that deposits and winnings belong to the casino until they decide otherwise, will clamor for control of their own currency. We can suggest playing simply for the quality of the games and gaming experience after taking everything else into consideration. We're looking forward to future game development and will review new games as they are released.
FunFair was the first developer to go beyond a White Paper and actually deploy fast, fair and fun games on the Ethereum blockchain. And although some players may prefer complete anonymity when they gamble, we appreciate FunFair being open to new KYC (know your customer) technologies like uPort which allow people to prove their identity. That bodes well for regulatory acceptance and is just another reason FunFair could become the first blockchain casino platform to disrupt the online gaming market.
FunFair Technologies History
FunFair Technologies was founded by Jez San, Jeremy Longley, and Oliver Hopton in 2017.
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