Recently, blockchain-based online casino Edgeless announced its upcoming ICO, due to begin on 16th February 2017. The Ethereum based casino markets itself on having 0% edge and full transparency. Co-Founder Tomas Lukosaitis agreed to answer some questions for Chain-Finance.
C-F: With the option of using cryptocurrency casinos with house edge of 1% or under, what will compel users to move from their current gambling options to Edgeless?
TL: There are few key factors. First of all, 0% house edge is a great marketing message for every gambler, as this means the chances are equal for everyone. Most online casinos have 1% - 15%, but not Edgeless. Moreover, as the casino is completely transparent, there is no way of scamming people with rigged odds. You can read more about our marketing strategy in this Medium post.
C-F: What impact will blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies have on the gambling industry?
TL: The impact is massive. The blockchain technology is a game changer for online gambling industry. The thing is that the reputation for online casino is everything. All industry is basically based on reputation. If players don’t trust the online casino, they will not gamble. Simple as that. So far casinos have ‘certifications’ , ‘licenses’ and sort of a fairness check but it doesn’t work - they still have the full power to rig the game without being spotted. Due to the competitions some casinos decide to ‘use that power’ not to run out of business. Players usually figure it out, it gets public and these things draw negative image on the whole industry.
So if we can get rid of that ‘cheating’ factor - industry reputation will peak at maximum. Online gambling would compete with live gambling.
C-F: How quickly could the gambling industry benefit from these developments?
TL: Currently blockchain is still an experimental technology and many areas will feel actual impact after many years of development. However, in casino industry blockchain application wouldn’t take many years to develop and right now we can develop a solution to many gambling industry problems. Casino industry can feel the immediate impact and enjoy these fruits of the blockchain. We also predict, that blockchain gambling projects will have one of fastest ROI in comparison to other blockchain projects/areas.
C-F: What initially drew your attention to cryptocurrencies and blockchain and their possible use in the gambling industry?
TL: First of all, for us blockchain in general is a fascinating technology. We do believe that it will make a major change in economic and political systems world runs right now, by changing fiat currency, human co-operations, organisational transparency and many more. However there is long way to go for that read. As fans of futurism we want to contribute to this global phenomenon, today. And it seems like gambling industry today can benefit the most using blockchain technologies. That’s why we decided to tackle casinos problems first and build something tangible. So people can see how game-changing blockchain technologies can be.
Secondly, Ethereum blockchain allows us to solve online gambling problems (Pricing “Edge” and Transparency) and create a new era of CASINO.
C-F: What attracted you to the Ethereum blockchain for implementing smart contracts?
TL: We can see that Ethereum have huge focus on smart contracts and so far they can offer the most potential in comparison to other blockchain smart contracts. Since a key element in gambling transparency is a smart contract - ethereum is a no brainer fit. In addition to that Ethereum has really strong team of devs which are working full heart on Ethereum, we feel that Ethereum is going to be a dominant blockchain when it comes to smart-contracts.
C-F: Do you see blockchain gambling supplementing or replacing online gambling?
TL: In a near future it will be a supplement to the industry for sure. However, once players will know that it’s possible to gamble with absolute transparency, they will be demanding more from other online casinos. These casinos will need to adapt implementing blockchain to their mechanisms. And then it will replace all current mechanisms of online casinos on the internet.
C-F: Which aspect of blockchain do you feel is the most beneficial to the gambling scene and why?
TL: 1. Absolute transparency so casinos will not be able to cheat without being spotted. As mentioned above, casino business is strongly dependant on its reputation, so smart-contracts will make sure they will not have any problems with that.
2.Reduced transaction costs in comparison to fiat currency.
3.Full anonymity by playing with cryptocurrency.
In general online casino operational costs will go down, that means casinos can reduce price of the gambler ( house edge ) for own players. Like we do having 0% house edge totally cashing our competition.
C-F: What level of adoption would Edgeless need to achieve to be viable and how long do you see it taking to reach that stage?
TL: We are planning to launch our main game - Black Jack after 6 month once ICO is finished. At this point game is going to be viable and fully functioning.
C-F: Will Edgeless only ever offer 0% edge gambling or could it offer alternatives with edge but higher pay-outs or other incentives?
TL: In 1st year we will offer mainly 0% house edge games which are based on luck+skill. That means casino will be earning from player’s mistakes.
In addition to that we will have sports betting, which will generate 4% profit.
In 2nd year we will have full focus on scaling the casino and developing more profit maximizing games. 0% house edge games are extremely good marketing message attracting large amount of players. Just to sum up:
1.A lot of gamblers are attracted by 0% edge games
2.Some part of players join to casino’s other games like sport betting where casino is making more profits.
C-F: Will developers need permission to add new games or will the addition of new games be monitored/controlled in any way?
TL: All games will be developed by our developers team. Later, we plan for EDGELESS to become a platform, where 3rd party developers will be able to develop their own games and implement Edgeless transparency mechanism.