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Blockchain-Powered VR World Enters New Testing Phase

(@mpmcsweeney) | Published on March 15, 2017 at 11:34 BST
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A plan to build a virtual reality underpinned by a blockchain is moving ahead with the launch of a new test network.

Called Decentraland, the project launched its test blockchain yesterday, starting a new phase of development it has dubbed 'Bronze Age'. Among the developers supporting the open-source project is Manuel Aráoz, famed for bitcoin's Proof of Existence document ownership tool.

It's that kind of concept – using blockchain data to prove ownership of something at a particular point in time – that is applied in Decentraland, which uses its own blockchain network.

Essentially, its blockchain acts as a registry of land, with each new transaction block signifying a new plot. If a player mines that block, they get ownership of the land allotment, which can be later traded away to other players.

The same idea has underpinned other gaming-focused projects, including Huntercoin and BitQuest.

Aráoz said the testnet release gives prospective players the ability to start shaping their environment, adding that other functionality will continue to be added for users of the virtual world.

He told CoinDesk:

"The current version we're releasing ... allows users to build structures using simple primitives such as cubes, spheres and plains, but we're planning to allow more complex stuff and even scripting. It's ultimately up to the users what cool stuff is built on Decentraland."

According to the project's website, other goals on the development roadmap include support for VR headsets such as the Oculus Rift.

Images via Decentraland; Shutterstock

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