Internet Computer Supernova Hackathon Summary
The Internet Computer recently held and completed a Supernova Hackathon where nearly 4,000 developers and entrepreneurs participated in a competition to show off their best DApps, services, and tools being built on the Internet Computer tech stack and blockchain. The total prize pool was $6 million dollars — to be allocated in cash prizes, grants, and seed funding opportunities.
A hackathon is a design, building competition, and event where computer programmers, engineers, software developers, and entrepreneurs come together and collaborate on various software projects such as decentralized applications. Hackathons are great opportunities to discover up-and-coming talent and unicorn-like applications to invest in that have the potential to change the industry and shape its future. What we’re talking about here is Web3 on the Internet Computer.
In the recent hackathon with the Internet Computer, developers and creators competed across 6 domains: SocialFi, GameFi, Metaverse and NFTs, Asynchronous DeFi, Public Good/Social Impact, and Blue Sky — and had over 400 unique submissions. These submissions were judged by a panel that included Andreessen Horowitz, Polychain Capital, Electric Capital, and Huobi. So a lot of big name players.
So Who Are The Winners?
Cubetopia seeks to be the first fully decentralized multiplayer RPG/sandbox game built on the Internet Computer. An interesting aspect about Cubetopia is that players will be allowed to express their creativity and imagination by having their own unique island on the blockchain. These islands will be NFTs, and on these islands, players can place and sell NFTs from their wallets. Players can also invite other players to work together, collaborate on art or other designs, and hang out.
At the current stage, Cubetopia is operating a sandbox experience, similar to other games such as Minecraft, The Sandbox, and Decentraland, but moving forward, Cubetopia will transition to a play-to-earn type of RPG.
What this entails is islands will be used to produce resources that equip players for their quests, so here think World of Warcraft + Pokemon. Then the resources and equipment can be used in adventures and quests where players battle monsters in the in-game world and earn rewards for doing so.
Completing these quests and participating in adventures and battling monsters will reward players with unique in-game and on-chain rewards such as cosmetics, NFTs, tokens, and tools.
One inspiration behind Cubetopia is to allow players to be able to build with ease as if they were opening a box of legos. Currently, Cubetopia can be opened in your browser, which is great for onboarding because it’s different in that you don’t have to go through long sign-in processes to play. You can go in and input your name and start playing. Here’s what it looks like right after signing-in.
As with all games though, the evolution from pixelated graphics to immersive high-def 3D and 4D may take some time, but as the industry consolidates and the company attracts more game developers and graphic designers, the in-game visuals will improve rapidly, and it will only improve all aspects.
Moving forward, Cubetopia will be expanding on island building, the in-game building system, NFT and wallet integration, multiplayer integrations, in-game communications, community building, partnerships, different island features, character customizations, more items, tokenomics, and resource farming details. So there’s lots more in store.
The second Grand Champion is Spinner Cash, the first layer 2 protocol to bring zero-knowledge proofs and private transactions to the Internet Computer, and soon to Bitcoin after the BTC-ICP integration.
Spinner Cash desires to compete and out-do layer-1 privacy coins such as Zcash and Monero, as well as various layer-2 projects on Ethereum such as Aztec and Tornado Cash. However, Spinner seeks to do this with the added functionality of smart contracts, which all the others lack. This gives Spinner a strong competitive advantage.
Moreover, with the Internet Computer’s upcoming upgrade for threshold ECDSA support, zk-SNARK based private-transactions will be brought directly to Bitcoin with no intermediaries or bridges. As a result, this brings layer-2 private transactions to Bitcoin, which Bitcoin as is commonly understood lacks privacy in its current form. Here’s what the app looks like.
In summary, the innovation from Spinner is that people will be able to trade between tokens such as ICP and Bitcoin securely and privately, without a need to worry about layer 1 and bridges, and the limitations that presents.
1st & 2nd Place Segment-by-Segment
Kontribute is a Web3 platform for creative writing, storytelling, and NFTs. In particular, Kontribute allows readers, writers, and Web3 enthusiasts to write and read stories, as well as sell and trade NFTs from their stories. Below is what the Kontribute story homepage looks like.
One great thing about Kontribute is that it’s a complete solution. In the NFT writing and publishing industry, there’s a long journey to featuring one’s writing. For example, first write the piece on Word Doc or other publishing software, save into PD or into an accepted format, go to NFT marketplace and mint the written piece, and then set the parameters and pricing for sale. So it’s a long and arduous process for writers who just want to do what they’re best at — writing. So Kontribute does address this problem in that it’s building the complete solution, including the front-end, back-end, marketplace, publisher, and wallet. So for prospective clients and writers, this will be a much easier and quicker on-boarding process.
GameFi: Eimolad (Mlada)
Eimolad is creating an MMORPG NFT game that’s fully deployed on the Internet Computer. The Eimolad world is inhabited by humans, dwarves, orcs, elves, and other creatures — and it’s a world full of mystery, dangers, and adventures. Therefore, the gameplay will feel like Lord of the Rings where these characters battle against each other as well as wild monsters or beasts. The game will also have an economic aspect to it where game attributes such as weapons can be improved and purchased on the in-game market using ICP and eGOLD. There’s also staking gold, coal, ore, and adit to improve one’s character ranking and resources.
Metaverse & NFTs: DSquad
dSquad is a metaverse targeted NFT avatar minting project that is working on making and gamifying the Internet Computer DApp ecosystem. What’s great about dSquad is its personalized and customizable Avatar NFTs that users can mint for a low price of 1 ICP. Moreover, to continue participating in the ecosystem and growing this avatar profile, users can keep the NFT in their wallet to earn prizes as well as complete missions on various DApps through the Internet Computer ecosystem. If users do these actions and complete missions, they’ll be rewarded. So it’s an Engage-to-Earn type of model, which will be great for increasing blockchain adoption on the Internet Computer.
Asynchronous DeFi: ICTC (ICLighthouse)
ICTC is a distributed transaction framework for DeFi applications on the Internet Computer network.
Public Good/Social Impact: CrowdFund NFT
CrowdFund NFT is a project that uses smart contract technology to build a safer, cheaper, and more global crowdfunding service — with a new NFT model. CrowdFund NFT is essentially an alternative to Kickstarter, Go Fund Me, and other traditional crowdfunding platforms. What’s great about this Web3 alternative is that there have been documented problems and lack of transparent funding and action on monetary donations that are often submitted to these organizations. So CrowdFund will use NFTs to provide fundraisers with ‘proof of participation’ in the projects they back.
NFTs change the game too from a financial perspective in that they lower the costs of fundraising and donating because of taking significantly less cuts from the total funds raised. This is a great Web3 solution that will take off, especially as fundraising, donations, and these types of grassroots initiatives become more popular in a more giving-conscious, environmentally-conscious 21st century society.
Blue Sky: Kinic
Last but not least is Kinic, a search engine for Web3 that seeks to improve upon and change the business model of Web3 search, which are costly for users and are plagued with advertisements. So Kinic is branding itself to be the answer to the problem of discoverability for Web3 apps and content.