(Long explanation below)
What if we could turn the experience of learning Bitcoin into a game? For more than a year we have been working on a game designed to present Bitcoin to people in a safe, fun and non destructive way. This is not a game about Bitcoin, nor does it use real Bitcoins (for the reason we describe below). This is a recreation of the experience one person would have with an old video game on a console like a Commodore 64.
A Bitcoin Simulator
To draw a comparison with other industries where training and education is critical, such as training airplane pilots, surgeons, etc., such industries often use simulators to train people in a safe environment. Simulations allow the users to practice without the fear of destroying something permanently, thus empowering beginners by acquiring more confidence over time.
With The Orange Pill Simulator our goal is to build something similar but designed around Bitcoin. Since Bitcoin and economics are generally boring topics for the majority of people, the game itself is not about Bitcoin. It is a strategy and adventure video game set in the near future, in a post-apocalyptic world where Humanity uses Bitcoin as primary currency. However, it is important to understand the following: No real money nor real Bitcoins are involved in this video game. This video game allows the player to enjoy the experience without the fear of loosing real money.
Embark on an amazing adventure beyond Bitcoin
The video game replicates all main aspects of the Bitcoin network: From the need to backup your seed words, to setting up an incredibly competitive mining operation and much more. But Bitcoin is, overall, a rather small portion of the game. Its in-game universe goes way beyond Bitcoin.
Around 2070, Earth’s rotation slowed down and eventually stopped. Following this terrible cataclysm, people started to build settlements and cities around a radically different planet. In the bright side, super heated by the Sun, giant solar power plants generate energy, that is then sent into the cold side, frozen in an everlasting darkness.
In this desperate environment, your goal is to manage a trading caravan on a train that goes from city to city buying and selling various commodities. The supply and prices depend on various factors, such as the position of the city on the planet, its technological level, etc. You can hire a crew of motivated mercenaries, ready to help you in your endeavor; but you will need to make sure that they are well fed and paid, at the risk of facing a mutiny.
A video game built on a Bitcoin Standard, respecting the player
Like Bitcoin and its blockchain, everything in the game is permanent. While this sounds harsh, we believe this makes decisions more interesting, since you are always at the risk of loosing everything. We offer many options to the player to solve the various challenges encountered in the game. We use emergent gameplay to give interesting and unusual situations. Yes, the game is unforgiving but, remember, giving up and surrendering is always an option.
Why we need your help!
After a year of development (initially as a solo project, and later with the help of an artist and a developer), we need to get funding to enable us to add more content, to polish the video game and to release it.
What is already done
- Pixel Art from A to Z without compromise.
- The entire game runs at a resolution of 640×360 including its user interface.
- You can create and customize your character.
- The basic gameplay loop.
- You can go from one city to another to buy and sell commodities.
- You can use the in-game Bitcoin wallet and Block explorer.
- You can start a battle with another train / caravan.
- Basic crew management (the crew produces trash and asks to be paid).
- You can go on a very basic quest.
- All the screenshots you see on this page are taken directly from the video game.
- To polish and integrate the battle system.
- Tp integrate the world map.
- To add a way to upgrade and repair your train / caravan.
- To add a tavern to recruit mercenaries into your crew.
- To improve the internal Bitcoin emulator.
- To add ways of dealing with the trash produced by the crew.
- To enable the player to add / remove carriages from the train.
- To add more quests.
- To make cities look different one from the other, based on their specialty.
- To add crafting and cooking (to prepare food for the crew).
- To add Bitcoin mining as a possible activity.
- To add specialized industries in certain cities (for example, if you bring certain commodities, inhabitants will produce advanced items).
- To add ways to create alliances with certain factions by mining Bitcoin into their mining pool.
- To allow transportation of passengers for quests.
Bitcoin Whale goals
(… if we receive enormous funding)
- To add the lightning network to the simulator in order to teach people how to open / close channels, etc.
- To add a full block explorer with a simulated blockchain.
- To add special and unique locations to discover in-game.
Promoting Free & Open Source resources and software
Free & Open Source software are an important part of the Bitcoin Ethos and vice versa. And while currently we do not plan to make the game open source, our game uses the open source Godot Game engine and resources from OpenGameArt. Furthermore:
- We try to use, as much as possible, open source / free software.
- We can pay the people working on the project in Bitcoin.
- We plan to release some internal tools and resources with open source licenses.
- If we raise a significant amount of money, we might open source the game.
While we believe in Bitcoin becoming eventually the future of money, we do not want to force our players to share our vision. The video game does not require any previous knowledge of Bitcoin, nor any real Bitcoin.
- No micro-transactions.
- Bitcoin only (no shitcoin / no altcoin).
- No real money / real value involved, no real bitcoin is required to play the game.
- No advertising pop-ups.
- No DRM nor copy protection.
- No internet connection required to play.
- No selling of private data from our users.
- Be aware that we plan to sell the game for around 10$.
- Because we do not want to collect any data from our donators and players we will not know who donated early.This means if you want the game for free you can simply donate 10$ less today and buy the game once its released.
- Incentivizing low-time preferences by not having grinding nor other senseless gameplay mechanics.
- No pay2win nor pay2play.
- Does not require any prior knowledge about Bitcoin.
- Does not require any Bitcoin nor any money to pay for the game (except to buy it).
Furthermore, as with any project, there is a risk of delays and failure. While we do not plan to make the video game open source (we would like to sell it), in the unlikely case that we would fail to give an update for more than 6 (six) consecutive months, we engage ourselves to release the project under an open source license (like GPL), thus giving it away to the World.
Credits & Acknowledgement
- Character Portrait by Buch
- LPC Base Kit By Eliza Wyatt, Lanea Zimmerman (Sharm), BlueCarrot16, Hyptosis
- Pixel Fonts by Pix3M & Arynoc
- To all pirate & trading games, train tycoons but specifically the amazing Space Trader game for Palm OS, the original Elite, Pirates of the Caribbean, Arctic Baron, Railroad Tycoons, Frostpunk.
- Dwarf Fortress, for its humor and emergent gameplay.
- Software used: Gimp, Blender, Godot Engine, Aseprite