Solana Breakpoint, FTX, and Decentralization

DeFi Land Education and Onboarding for the Masses

Solana Breakpoint, Lisbon 2022

The last two weeks have been a whirlwind of chaos, excitement, and conviction. We emerged from Solana Breakpoint more motivated than ever to deliver our promises of amazing features like forging, racing, and DeFi Land mobile. However, the celebrations took a turn with the sudden collapse of the FTX crypto empire. While DeFi Land’s treasury was not stored on FTX and our runaway remains secure, we cannot deny that the FTX contagion will take some time to work its way through the markets. Today, we are going to take a deep dive into several topics, including our take-aways from Breakpoint, the (few) impacts of the FTX fallout on DeFi Land, the case for true decentralization, and our role in shaping the path forward.

Breakpoint 2022 was a celebration of breakthrough applications, products, and infrastructure built for the Solana blockchain. Over the few days we spent with our peers in the ecosystem, we renewed our conviction that the digital future of mankind will live on the blockchain. Over a drink or two, we discussed why the world needs bankless and permissionless protocols to pave the road to inclusive financial systems, how consumer products (like the Saga phone), killer games and applications (like DeFi Land!), and scaling infrastructure can prepare us for mass adoption, and the value of IRL interfacing through DAOs, merchandise, and retail stores.

DeFi Land booth at Breakpoint

DeFi Land was a front-row feature of Solana’s Game Day at the beautiful Teatro Capitolio venue. We ran a live demo, met some of our community, and shared the story of DeFi Land with hundreds of developers and gamers. DFL Erwin represented the team in spectacular fashion in the underground bear market rally, while the rest of us mingled with other amazing teams and investors. Additionally, DeFi Land was on display in keynote presentations from several of our partners. The wealth of knowledge shared at the conference was innumerous, but here are a few big takeaways from the weekend.

  • State of Solana: The Breakpoint conference boasted 50% higher attendance in 2022 vs. 2021. This is in-line with massive growth of the developer ecosystem. The Solana blockchain is getting faster, more resilient, more secure, and more decentralized with plenty of powerful use cases that drive its core ecosystem.
  • Saga Phone: Pre-orders are live for Solana’s first major consumer product, and the release announcement is expected early 2023. DeFi Land is a featured partner application for the launch of the phone.
  • Solana Spaces: Our Solana Spaces partners are aiming for 200K visitors and have already given out 70K tutorials in efforts to onboard retail users to web3. Solana Spaces has enormous plans for 2023, including rapid growth of their retail store ecosystem through Spaces DAO. You might just see a DeFi Land booth in your city soon.
  • Firedancer: One of the more spectacular technical presentations of the weekend was Kevin Bowers’ presentation on Firedancer, Solana’s newest validator. This validator client managed Devnet transaction speeds of up to 1.2m TPS, giving us reason to be Solana will be able to scale mightily toward a bright and busy future. And yes, there are surely many of you wondering if the current state of crypto has encouraged us to think seriously about going multi-chain. Yes, of course we are. However, technical developments like Firedancer give us more faith than ever that Solana will play a critical role in the future. All major blockchains can and should coexist, and DeFi Land will be the bridge to them all.

Throughout the conference, it was clear that DeFi Land will play two major roles in the Solana ecosystem: we will continue to build to be the best in web3 gaming and we will focus on crypto/DeFi education. DeFi Land has industry-leading gameplay, graphics, and NFT utility. Soon, we will launch on mobile to provide smooth gameplay to the masses. We are more confident than ever in our trajectory as an amazing game. Our experiences at Breakpoint also revealed the value in education. As Breakpoint attendees, we represented a small group of crypto enthusiasts in a world that is still largely in the dark about the technology. All these incredible experiences and big ideas will go to waste if we do not find a way to reach the rest of the world. DeFi Land is reaffirming its commitment to our educational outreach, which will include informative articles, in-game tutorials, and interactive quizzes. Before we get into a few more details on the education program, let’s talk about a big reason why it’s needed…

Now, let’s face the curly-haired elephant in the room. The collapse of FTX has undeniable consequences that will permanently impact our ecosystem. FTX was a key player in the Solana ecosystem, owning ~10% of the $SOL supply and directly supporting many projects, including DeFi Land. FTX betrayed its promises of integrity to the ecosystem and they embodied all the dangers they swore to fix in crypto. Our funds are safe, but our hearts go out to those who have been adversely affected by this contagion.

SBF Statue was previously presented in the DeFi Land villages.

There are many important lessons here, but most importantly we believe the FTX fallout provides a strong case for true decentralization. FTX was trusted as an onboarding platform to crypto, boasting a charismatically nerdy CEO with celebrity endorsements and sports arenas who made it easy to get started with crypto. However, as we push to bring crypto to the masses, is this really the way we want to introduce users to the technology? Moreover, centralized exchanges represent pseudo-ownership of tokens behind the veil of complicated terms of service. We have seen the repeated fall of centralized exchanges due to the mishandling of customer funds. It is critical that we understand that any time there is centralization in finance, there are backdoors to corruption, greed, and negligence, and we rely on the institutions to do right by their customers. When even the most trusted institutions collapse and fail us, we must rethink the system entirely.

This is where we come in as a resource for information and a voice of integrity in the space. We have always urged our users to think of crypto not as an investing casino, but as a frontier of new technology. To help the masses onboard into this new frontier, DeFi Land’s education program will focus on learning the fundamentals of crypto, Defi, and the philosophy of decentralization. We will help users not only understand the projects they support, but also encourage them to play a meaningful role in our communities. We will embark on this journey with our DEX and aggregator partners in the space, and open the doors to new partnerships along the way. Our next chapter will solidify us as the premier onboarding platform for the decentralized future we all deserve. We can’t wait to reveal more details in the coming weeks.

We have faced enough crypto crises to last a lifetime in this year alone. With every major challenge, our community grows stronger and the mission of DeFi Land becomes more vital. We are here for the long haul and ready to deliver for our family of DeFi Landers. Next up is our highly anticipated Forging release, which will be ready when the dust of the FTX contagion settles. See you soon!

Want to learn more about DeFi Land? DeFi Land is a unique, multi-chain agriculture-simulation game created to gamify all aspects of decentralized finance. Our mission is to make it simple and easy for anyone to take part in the exciting world of DeFi and crypto. We recently introduced our Play and Earn gameplay, where our players can earn $GOLDY by fishing, harvesting, hunting, and tending to their pets using their Gen-0 NFTs. We have new players joining daily, and we welcome you to join us in Discord with any questions you have about getting started. You can also check out our socials here and join our Discord every Friday at 15:00 UTC for our Farmer’s Hall AMA with our team lead, DFL Erwin.

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