What is Bitcoin?
How can I play?
Bitrunner is an app that can help you to find and unearth hidden Bitcoins around the world. You will be able to play using your iPhone, Android phone, Google Glass or a drone.
What is the game play like?
The Short Story: You are walking down the street on your way to work when your phone starts buzzing. It’s a message from the Bitrunner App; it says that it found a Bitcoin just a block down from your current location. You make a slight detour and head over there to claim your coin using the Bitrunner app. Now that you’ve got the Bitcoin in your in-game wallet you consult the Bitrunner app again and find the nearest Bitrunner Bank which happens to be located inside coffee shop on the next corner. Your phone alerts you that you have entered the safe zone and can calmly proceed to the bank where you drop most of your loot for safe keeping. It’s been a good day, you’ve earned a venti-sugar-free-non-fat-vanilla-soy-double-shot-decaf-no-foam-extra-hot-peppermint-white-chocolate-mocha-with-light-whip-and-extra-syrup and sip it unhurriedly on your way home.
The Longer Story: You’re buddy has been watching a popular hiking trail in the nearby hills, and convinces you that it’s ripe for the picking. The prey is pretty clever so you have to choose the perfect location to build the perfect trap. You find a valley with only 2 exits in the nearby park. You place a hidden remote mine in the middle of the valley in a picnic area and pour some Bitcoin of your own around it as bait... Read more
Is it free to play?
Yes! The game will always be free to download and play, which means you can actually make money by exploring your city and finding the hidden treasure. But, it's a competitive world out there and you'll do much better if you have an edge. You can team up with others and/or buy tools in the game that will give you a leg up on the competition. We will use the majority of these funds to put back into the eco system to make the game more profitable and fun for everyone.
Where can I play?
Just about anywhere on Earth - and once smart devices support IPPS (Inter Planetary Positioning System), the Moon, Mars and other planets. :) In the closed beta version we are likely to start small and focus on a handful of cities.
What kinds of tools are available?
There are lots of tools that will help you get a leg up on the competition. The tools that will be present in the first version of the game are:
Shovel: Normally, without any tools, you're trying to 'dig up' Bitcoins with your 'bare hands'. This can take a while. If you want to get at the treasure faster, and before your competitors do, you'll want a shovel. Shovels come in a variety of sizes and the bigger your shovel, the fast you can dig. Shovels, like most of the tools in the game, have a lifespan and will wear out over time.
Telescopes: Telescopes help you see further around you. You'll get an edge by being able to see fields of Bitcoins farther away than your opponents and even see the opponents around you. Telescopes come in various powers, the greater the power the further you'll be able to see. Telescopes too have a lifetime and will stop working optimally after some time.
Explosives: For those of you who like a little more aggressive strategy, you can plant mines that explode when an opponent gets within a certain range, or bombs that go off at a certain time of day or can even be detonated remotely by you. Explosives come with different blast radiuses, the larger the blast radius, the more coins from more opponents you'll get to pillage. With mines that are proximity detonated, you'll get an alert on your phone when your mine has been detonated so you can swoop in and collect the booty. There are certain areas where bombs and mines are not allowed to be placed, for example in the immediate vicinity of a Bitrunner Bank. Explosives, if not used for a long time will eventually start rusting and stop working.
Armor: Weather you are playing dirty or not, you'll want to be protected from your opponents' aggressions. Buying armor is the best way to do that. Armor comes in various gauges, the stronger the armor, the less loss you'll sustain from a blast. Armor can be used until it encounters a blast stronger than it's current protection strength.
Where can I buy tools?
To buy tools, you'll visit a Bitrunner store. A Bitrunner store is a virtual store located in a physical space. Depending on how convenient the store is, you may be able to get better or worse bargains on tools. Like banks, stores are a safe zone where no one can plant bombs so have no fear when you go to by your armor to protect you form the cruel world.
Where can I keep my Bitcoins safe while I go out exploring?
One of the risks of collecting lots of coins and carrying them with you, is that if you encounter an opponent's explosive device, some or all or the coins you are carrying may be scattered about the blast area and you, because you're 'dead' won't be able to pick them up for some time. Armor can protect you from loss depending on the size of, and your proximity to the blast. One strategy you can use to keep your coins safe, is to deposit them into a Bitrunner Bank. Bitrunner Banks are virtual banks located in a physical space. You must physically go to the bank location to make a deposit or withdrawal. Zones around banks are a safe from bombs so that no one can perform ATM style holdups with clients carrying lots of treasure to deposit, or having just made a withdrawal. At Bitrunner banks, you can also change your Bitcoins for cash that will be deposited into your real-life bank account in dollars (or whatever the local currency is).
What are some of the strategies I can use to win?
Bitrunner is social a game that only gets more fun when more people play. The addition of your friends (and maybe enemies) to the game opens some interesting possibilities. Now, you can form alliances, partnerships, wars and truces. How you decide to play is up to you. Whether you are a loner , just a little bit bad, or prefer to play with your friends and split the spoils, there's a strategy for you. Here are some examples that we came up with:
Lone Miner: You prefer to go it alone and live and let live. You find fields of Bitcoins, and harvest them. You might even find a field that only you know about and can go back to over and over to reap the benefits.
Miner Collective: You’re a social creature and prefer working with people hand in hand to help the collective. You harvest zones in teams and everyone wins. You decide with whom you want to cooperate and how to divide up the fruits of your labor.
Cunning Plunderer: You're just a little bit of a bad boy and don't mind using a little force where necessary. You map out your territory and protect it with explosive devices, then swoop in to collect the spoils.
The Wolf Pack: You believe in safety in numbers and that the best hunting is done as a team. Like a pack of wolves you and your friends spread out over a territory to discover the most populous and profitable areas. You form plans of attack that take advantage of your numbers. If some of your friends have invested in special tools, like a telescope, they can share their knowledge with the whole team sharing with everyone the benefit of their investment. One for all and all for one!
Of course, these are just examples and we encourage you to find your own strategy!
Where do the Bitcoins come from?
Bitcoins are found forming all over the earth’s surface at random locations, densities, age and value. Bitcoins are placed and managed by our app. Some areas have denser concentrations and other have less. Dense areas can be used for continuous “mining”, where you dig up, collect and go back for more some time later. The funds for them come from the in app purchases and location based partners, which include small businesses, franchises and government tourism agencies.
Can I play with my drone?
What a strange question you ask! Why yes! In Bitrunner, Bitcoins may be hidden at altitude so your drone, jetpack or personal helicopter are the perfect tools to collect them all from the sky. We imagine this feature will be developed in a later iteration.
As Bitcoin enthusiasts, we believe that virtual decentralized currencies are the future. One of our motivations is to help introduce this concept to young gamers and others who may not have had the opportunity to hear about this wave of the future. We chose Bitcoin of all the virtual currencies as it is the most well known and most mature of all of its peers.
Why we need your support?
We need your support to bring this innovative game to the world. We want to be able to focus our full attention on Bitrunner and develop and perfect the first version. We will use any funds that we gather to develop the software needed to deliver a superb gaming experience and to bootstrap the Bitcoins that will initially be distributed. We estimate that should we be fully funded, our team could develop the first version in about 6 months.
Why Use Indiegogo?
We chose to run a Indiegogo campaign because it offers the ability to go beyond traditional bootstrapping efforts to reach exciting stretch goals so we can implement some of the most exciting features even earlier! In short, the more funding we receive, the more we can offer in the first version launch! Beyond giving us the ability to help fund this effort, Indiegogo lets us connect with you! We wanted to give the community a voice in our product’s creation, and Indiegogo seemed like the perfect way to do that.
Who is on our team?
Our core team members are Nathan and Simon, both entrepreneurs at heart but with different specialities. Nathan is a software architect with decades of development expertise and Simon is an expert in User Interface and User Experience design. We also have a board of advisers who are experts in bitcoin, psychology and game theory who are at our disposal.
Nathan Pahucki Co-Founder
Software engineer, Entrepreneur
20 years of experience in software architecture and development
10 years of experience of team and technical lead Co-Founder of startup with successful acquisition
Proud part of the Maker Movement
Open Source advocate and contributor
Entrepreneur at heart
Simon Forgacs Co-Founder
Ui Ux Designer, Entrepreneur
8 years of experience in User Interface Design
3 years of experience in User Experience Design
6 years of experience in Project Management
Co-Founder of startup and winner of the Start-Up Chile Program
Winner of the Bridge Budapest Fellowship
Winner of the Website of the Year Award in Hungary
Granted researcher at Kitchen Budapest New Media Lab
Nicolas Cary CEO at Blockchain.info
Csongor Baranyai Game Designer, Lecturer
Balint Forgacs Cognitive neuroscientist
Risks and challenges
The risks to the project may come in the from technical hurdles such as accuracy of GPS on some devices, preventing location spoofing and availability of certain features on some wireless carriers. We also realize that it is no small feat to create something that will keep players engaged and excited to play and offer real value to them. While the team has decades of software development and UX experience under their belt, this will be the first massively multiplayer mobile game that we develop. To help mitigate some of the challenges that we will inevitably face, we have assembled an expert advisory panel with education and experience in game theory, finance and psychology. We feel that the usual risks and challenges that normally come with creating and managing a software project are already well addressed by our extensive collective experience in this field.
As Bitcoin enthusiasts, we believe that virtual decentralized currencies are the future. One of our motivations is to help introduce this concept to young gamers and others who may not have had the opportunity to hear about this wave of the future. We chose Bitcoin of all the virtual currencies as it is the most well known and most mature of all of its peers. We recognize that, as with anything this revolutionary, there are inherent risks. There are risks around adoption, infrastructure and fluctuations in value. While the game is premised on the belief that Bitcoin, in the end, will become the de facto virtual currency, there is nothing in the game which requires its use. We can just as easily use any other virtual or real currency, and are agile enough in our thinking that we will adapt as the environment evolves. In fact, to provide the lowest friction experience, tools will initially be purchased in-app, which necessarily involves traditional currencies which we will convert to virtual currency to fund the game eco-system.