Tonk was borne of exasperation at the state of the world and the web.

That, despite their solarpunk promise, computational networks have developed in such a way that often stifles creative liberty and innovation.

That the best answer - open, trustless protocols - are reluctant to grow beyond the realm of decentralised finance.

So why care about fully onchain games? [alternative notation]

  1. Because a composable, transparent, trustless gaming stack rewards game developers with extraordinary creative liberty. This is perhaps the strongest indicator of ecosystem success.
  2. Because trustless state machines are a far stronger approximation of reality than any high fidelity graphics and VR headset, engaging the player with unprecedented immersion.
  3. Because it’s the likeliest candidate to spark adoption of decentralised identity and social systems.
  4. Because it gives DeFi organic subject matter to capitalise instead of internal currency speculation. Similarly games hydrate NFT jpegs with narratives and stakes.
  5. Because it’s the most vibrant arena to battle-test new techniques for coordination and governance at scale.
  6. Because better primitives for coordination and governance - specifically over lorecraft and canon cultivation - scale authentic cultural production beyond niche subcultures and could finally solve the paradox of punk.

But most importantly,

  1. Because autonomous game worlds are privacy playgrounds.

What does that mean?

In games we shall discover the cryptographic primtives for onchain social worlds. If autonomous worlds are to propagate beyond gaming - if we are to achieve an open internet, powered by the world computer, that drives social media, labour networks, health services and more - we need a channel for sensitive information and public blockchains to mix.

However, financial systems don't model social relations half as well as game worlds do. The complexity of designing hidden information mechanics for game worlds maps to the complexity of designing privacy for social worlds. Games will drive emergent social and identity systems, as they always have. And for now at least, the stakes are sufficiently low as to permit bold experimentation.

Gaming - as a literal playground for technical exploration - has proudly been a leading indicator for innovation since the tech industry’s halcyon days. After all - the peril of centralised game design was probably responsible for Ethereum itself.