Introducing Decentraland’s XOM-8: Scrapyard Escape
Join a faction of robots racing to escape the planet in Decentraland’s blockchain-based, coop strategy game
Picture a barren landscape littered with futuristic space debris. There are dozens of robots, all hard at work collecting scrap metal and spare parts, rushing against the clock to construct buildings, machines, and starships. This is the setting for XOM-8: Scrapyard Escape, our first-party game built for the Decentraland platform!
What is XOM-8?
Scrapyard Escape is a team-cooperative strategy game focused on three warring factions of robots. At the beginning of each week-long match, players choose a faction to support, and then are tasked with collecting different materials scattered around the playspace — a group of Decentraland owned parcels. As each team gathers more resources and builds up their base, they progress toward the ultimate goal: manufacturing a starship to escape the surface of the planet.
Scrapyard Escape will be available for anyone to play. The game will take place in separate matches lasting approximately one real-world week. Before the beginning of each match, interested players will have a 24 hour period when they can sign up and select their faction. Once the game begins, the factions compete against each other in a race to collect different resources that they then use to build factories, equipment, and warehouses to store even more resources. The ultimate objective is to return to their home planet by building a new starship.
The winning teams will be awarded MANA from a pool that each player must contribute to in order to play. Players can also earn in-game assets like special buildings and machinery upgrades in the form of NFTs that can be reused in future matches.
Sounds like fun? We think so.
Wait, who’s building XOM-8?
Scrapyard Escape is a first-party game, meaning that the Decentraland team is designing and building it from scratch exclusively for the Decentraland platform. The concept was originally the brainchild of Chris Chapman (aka m3mnoch on Discord), Decentraland’s Experience Architect, and he’s already put a small team of people together to focus the project.
We’re building Scrapyard Escape for two big reasons. First, it sounded like a lot of fun. Second, we want to help kick-start the creation of more community oriented blockchain-based games. The entire project will be open-sourced to serve as a giant example, showcasing one approach to building complex, persistent, interactive experiences using our SDK.
We think that building Scrapyard Escape will both inspire other game developers to explore Decentraland as a platform and entertain existing gamers, in addition to providing us with valuable insights about what it’s like to build games on top of Decentraland.
What does XOM-8 look like?
Every match begins with the Landfall Event. After players sign up and the game starts, a huge catastrophic battle begins to unfold in the skies above Decentraland. The players take the form of disabled XOM-8 robots, and can only watch as debris and slagged out starships from their factions begin raining down onto the surface of the planet, or Genesis City.
A ship from each faction eventually crashes down, containing a sentient Command Crystal. In a final effort, the Command Crystal reanimates the players’ disabled XOM-8s, and provides them with instructions for the steps needed to rebuild their faction’s ship.
At this point, the game officially begins and the players are able to move around the world.
What can players do?
Each player takes the form of a XOM-8 robot belonging to one of three factions: The Foundry, The Reapers, and the P.I.P.s. Players then rush to scan the surface of the planet, looking for the fallen space debris and rare minerals that they can use to build up their team’s base. All of these resources are shared among the factions, so each team must fight for the materials they need.
There are several different levels that teams progress through as they become richer in resources and more technically advanced. The teams level up by completing different tasks and objectives assigned to them by their Command Crystal, like building a warehouse to store more materials or constructing specific factories.
At any time during the game, players can return to their Command Crystal to check in on their team’s progress and to get instructions for their next objective (players might even sneak into their enemy’s base to spy on their Command Crystal). Accomplishing these different goals contributes to the team’s final score, securing their position on the global scoreboard.
While we are designing Scrapyard Escape to be a team-coop game, players can still play by themselves if none of their teammates are online. Since each match lasts and entire week, the teams who collaborate and coordinate the most are favored to win.
A match ends with the first team to successfully build their starship. Once a match is over, the scores are tallied, and the arena is reset for the next round beginning after the 24 hour sign up period.
What can players win?
In order to play Scrapyard Escape, players must stake a small amount of their own MANA. This MANA is pooled together and used to reward the highest placing teams, so everyone has the chance to earn a little extra (in similar games, developers could take a small cut of this pool as reimbursement).
There will be many additional awards in the form of tokenized in-game assets, like new characters, machinery upgrades, special buildings (and more) that players can save and reuse in future games.
In addition to MANA and NFT awards, the highest ranking teams are recorded on a persistent leader-board, for all of Genesis City to admire.
When can I play XOM-8?
XOM-8: Scrapyard Escape is still under construction, as is the Decentraland platform, but we intend to release XOM-8 in coordination with the launch of the Decentraland Client as one of the first games hosted in Genesis City.
We’ll be sharing our progress with XOM-8 right here on our blog, so keep an eye out for future developments and sneak peeks. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to us on Discord!