Chinese search giant and well-known Google competitor, Baidu is the latest company to get in on the blockchain craze. According to local news outlet Leiphone, the company recently launched a doggy-centered copycat of the popular Ethereum-based game CryptoKitties. The game, called CryptoDogs, isn’t based on the Ethereum network but uses a blockchain known as Achain.
Baidu’s CryptoDogs, just like CryptoKitties, lets players purchase, trade, and breed digital pets. Their defining characteristics are recorded on the blockchain and are what makes the pets more or less valuable.
Whether the search giant’s knock-off will be as successful as CryptoKitties remains to be seen. According to CryptoKitties Sales, a third-party data site, players have spent over $19 million trading on the platform. About 50,000 cats have been bred or released so far. At press time, there aren’t a lot of CryptoDogs for sale, and they’re all valued in Achain’s ACT cryptocurrency.
On the official CryptoDogs’ website, a statement claims users can already play the game, although they may find some bugs along the way. The company claims it is currently working to fix them. Since CryptoKitties managed to congest the Ethereum network, some say it will be interesting to see how well the Achain network would handle a similar spike in activity.
According to its website, the network is similar to that of Ethereum, as it also has the ability to “issue tokens, smart contracts, create applications and blockchain systems.” It claims to be able to process 1,000 tx/s, instead of Ethereum’s 12 tx/s. Notably, Achain works on a “fork theory” concept, that essentially means each project can fork its own secondary chain, so as to not congest Achain itself.
CryptoDogs is only available in Chinese, so most western CryptoKitties players who want to get in on the action will have to use a translator.
CryptoDogs faces CryptoKitties going mobile in China
While Baidu’s knock-off is already up and running, CryptoKitties is set to launch in China soon. Right now, the game is only available using the Metamask wallet, a Google Chrome extension. Downloading it requires access to the Chrome web store, which is blocked by China’s Great Firewall. This means Chinese players have, so far, been left out.
According to Quartz, a CryptoKitties mobile app will soon be launch in the App Store in the country, during the coming Lunar New Year that starts on February 16. Weeks after launching in China, the app will be made available to the game’s 250,000 active players throughout the globe. The app will have a built-in Ethereum wallet.
To celebrate the Lunar New Year, the game will reportedly include cats with Chinese backstories. Plus, it will add three special crypto kitties known as “fancy cats”. While the game is no longer congesting the network, developers note that traffic still spikes once in a while.
Benny Giang, the game’s co-founder, stated:
“With the case of more crypto collectables and crypto games, it’s going to drive a lot more traffic to ethereum, and more attention outside the spectrum of people who are investors and traders to maybe your mom and dad who want to play the games. I think it’s ultimately a good thing for any blockchain.”