The NFT game Wolf game recently ran into a pretty serious issue that raises concerns about the development of blockchain-based games.
NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens) are a relatively new technological craze that is getting a bit out of hand. Without going too far into the weeds, these essentially serve as digital authentication certificates. Companies such as Square Enix, Sega and Behavior Interactive have announced their intention to enter this field.
On the other hand, IGDA and Bungie have expressed concerns about how NFTs will affect game design and the environment. It was this old point – game design – that became a problem for Wolf game, one of the more recent versions of this growing space.
What happened with the Wolf game TVN?
Wolf game, at first glance, is a fairly straightforward NFT game. Players can get either Wolf or Sheep NFTs in the game. Sheep will generate the currency $ WOOL and Wolves will attempt to steal $ WOOL or even kidnap newborn sheep. (A white paper has all the mechanical details if you’re interested.) The bigger issue, however, is how the game was designed, as Dan Olson pointed out on Twitter.
“Wolf Game has integrated all of its game into the Ethereum blockchain”, one reads in a Tweeter by Dan Olson (via ResetEra). “A bug was found in some of their code that provided a potential exploit. They couldn’t fix it and instead were forced to recreate the entire game from scratch and issue entirely new tokens.”
If you’re curious how this could happen, it has to do with the nature of NFTs – once created, they’re essentially immutable. If you need to make a change, your only option is to create a new NFT and make the old one invalid. Doing something like this would undoubtedly reduce some of the appeal of the decentralized nature of NFTs.
The main mistake here was to put the entire code of a game on the blockchain like Wolf game made. As any Game Dev 101 student can tell you, it is nearly impossible to create a program without a bug, especially as its complexity increases. The problem becomes all the more serious when you involve real money and digital currency or tokens that only have value because of the perceived trust in the product. The seriousness of this problem can be best demonstrated by the fact that Wolf game had reported sales of $ 52 million in just five days.
TO Wolf game credit, the developer publicly disclosed the bug (which could lead to exploits) and plans announced for a third party code audit and the introduction of a bug bounty system. If another bug is discovered, it may require another round of NFT reissues.
For now, the migration of Wolf game NFTs continue while the developer works on code consolidation. The key lesson to take away here is this: NFTs cannot be changed once created and it’s probably a good idea to keep that in mind when making a game that involves blockchain.
What do you think of the situation with Wolf game? Do you think blockchain and NFTs can be useful in games? Let us know in the comments below!