INTERVIEW: Jillian Godsil meets Piotr Blazewicz, CEO of CoinClash Games…
The difference between gaming and gambling can be blurry but it is essential to be able to drive a clear line between the two when it comes to gaming regulation, taxation and staying on the right side of the law. This is something that comes naturally to CEO and co-founder of CoinClash Games, Piotr Blazewicz, with his background in both industries in the tightly regulated territory of Gibraltar.
“My background is in media & marketing where I worked since 1996 but in 2005 I moved to Gibraltar to work on the pre IPO project for a company called PartyGaming (owner of PartyPoker – the biggest poker site in the world at that time). This was a very intensive experience and gave me great insight into the marketing, legalities and rules surrounding gambling – and the customers.”
When that project finished around 2011, Blazewicz was looking for another challenge but opted to move from gambling to gaming, a similar area in terms of customers but without the heavy regulatory overheads. Around the same time, he met his co-founder Matt Kotnik who Blazewicz describes as a brilliant technical developer & scientific brain.
“We wanted to entertain people and make them feel good about themselves so that automatically knocked gambling on the head. Being based in Gibraltar we knew we would have to meet the very strict gaming rules, but we were happy to do that.”
CoinClash Games evolved into a social skills-based platform using hyper casual mobile games.
“The skill base is very important, everyone starts from the same level and can’t jump up by buying shields or extra weapons for example. We are starting with two simple games – Bubble Clash 4 Cash and Solitaire.
“And as the first name says we’ve introduced a money aspect for players to play for cash.”
Both titles are highly polished games that can be played in under five minutes. There will be a further five casual games in the first tranche including a quiz game, a football game, a word game, Candy Crush-style game and a golf simulation game.
The concept behind CoinClash Games is to create engaging games where people can play for fun or to challenge each other to play for cash. Free players will be able to enjoy as many features as paying players but if they enjoy the games they might consider pitching a dollar to add excitement. We added lots of unique features like inviting and playing against your friends.
“That is where the name hails from – people putting one coin against another – with the winner taking the spoils. In addition, to maintain the platform, a fee of 10 cents is charged per game. So if you were to challenge another player for a stake of $1 it would cost you $1.10 to engage.”
The 10 cent for each game is divided into four parts. The majority (50%) goes to pay for developers which are currently in house but which in future will also include third party developers. 25% of the fee goes to the platform, 15% to the staking pool for people holding the CoinClash coin and 10% to buy back coins and burn them.
Blockchain and crypto
And this is where Blazewicz suddenly starts talking about the blockchain and crypto component of the platform. He only speaks about it now because people playing on the platform never need to know any of these details to enjoy the games. It becomes relevant when they want to explore who they played with and what was the outcome of all games. That’s where the Blockchain explorer will give them insight on the game’s transparency.
“We decided to build the platform on blockchain for two key reasons. The first was to provide transparency of all games, winners and cash. Often when money is involved in skill based games the audience cannot know for certain if they are playing a real person or a bot. By building a blockchain we can host all the data on it with every single game operating as a smart contract. This will build trust in our games.
Another key differentiator from similar games is that players can invite their own friends or family into a circle ensuring they are only playing with known people.
“The second part has not been done before and is a world first. People who hold the CoinClash token and stake them on the platform, will earn in dollars a revenue split of the income.
“People are used to staking coins, but the rewards are denominated in tokens, often native ones. However, on our platform, when people stake our tokens, they earn in fiat.”
Blazewicz believes this is a real use case in the gaming industry. He also plans a buy back scheme for the tokens to act as a deflationary measure.
Selling the tokens originally is a way for CoinClash Games to fund the platform but in time it will also act as a regular payout for stakers. Only 2.1 billion tokens will ever be minted with the first shelf of 500,000,000 available.
“Currently we have sold between 15 and 20% of available tokens which equates to almost $1 million. We are, however, fully regulated in Gibraltar which also requires participants to do a full KYC.”
Blazewicz believes the platform will be attractive to other third-party developers of skill-based games in that it offers them a path to monetize their games seamlessly. Currently, the existing games are available on Google Game Store and Apple IOS but there are plans to extend access to web browsers and even consoles.
Immediate access to winnings
As part of the development of the platform, attention has also been paid to customer service. Players can access their winnings, once it totals more than $10, immediately.
Blazewicz and his partner spent the most part of 2022 building and this year are looking to put the games into the public.
“The market here is huge. People like the short games – it’s like a coffee break and fits naturally into a day. It’s the total opposite of gamers spending hours and hours in front of their screen.
“People might play five or six times a day but it’s only about half an hour in total so it’s not distracting them from family or work. In time, we want to extend the challenges into tournaments to really optimise the player experience.
“We mean to deliver fun, engaging experiences for our customers – to take a break or plan a fun session with friends – all for small transactions to add to excitement of well known style games.”