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Letters From the Chainery

Here are the latest updates from the development team working on Gala’s blockchain, Project GYRI

Project GYRI is the code name for one of Gala’s most prized projects: The creation of a games-first layer 1 blockchain, built for Web3 entertainment.

As Gala’s new blockchain moves steadily toward full launch, the team behind it would like to update the community on the latest progress. We hope you can share in the excitement of this moment with us by fully understanding its significance for the future of the Gala Ecosystem.

Let’s talk Chain! A lot has happened this year and we’re entering a new era for Gala’s chain. In the spring we performed a number of Town Crush test releases with the chain integrated in the backend. May Mayhem launched Project GYRI’s first involvement in a competition and resulted in some tough but necessary learnings. Now, games are queued up to have our chain integrated throughout the rest of the year on a production network!

Warren Marshall’s creation of a fun, lightweight match-3 game coincided perfectly with our need to test out game integration. We were able to try out a number of different types of functionality and contract configurations. We distributed Project GYRI-native Fungible Tokens and NFTs, fulfilled token purchases from the Gala platform, and even used Project GYRI tokens as payment in-game on the assets contract. Our Town Crush game contract proved out creating and validating match stats and results, player profile stats for measuring progress, and in-game purchasing of profile inventory items. All in all, it was a great exercise of many Project GYRI features.

Of course, when you’re testing and pushing the limits of what your tech can do, you expect to run into problems. We definitely hit some snags during the May Mayhem competition. Although there wasn’t more traffic than expected, our systems (on test infrastructure) did not hold up to the onslaught of rabid Crushers. Our team was together in-person working on getting things shored up for the competition but ultimately realized that we needed to take a step back. This led to us taking extra time to build out robust analytics and performance testing apparatus and allowed us to diagnose the (quite unexpected) source of the problem. Now we can be much more confident in our infrastructure and better able to quickly find the source of any bottlenecks or other trouble.

Once we felt confident in these upgrades, we were able to re-release the competition in June and reward over 5000 players with over $400,000 in GALA prizes.

Along the way we’ve been continuously improving our infrastructure. During this testing phase the Project GYRI network has been running on docker containers. We now have the ability to run our network in Kubernetes. This aligns with the way workloads are run on Nodes and will pave the way for our network to eventually be hosted on them. It’s a huge step toward our goals of increasing decentralization and getting Node operators involved in running the chain.

From a bit more technical perspective, we’ve continued to beef up the core functionality. For us this means reviewing and refactoring existing utilities, making sure our code is readable and efficient, and most importantly secure. This is all part of moving from a testing and proving stage to a production-ready phase.

A critical part of Project GYRI being ready for production is bridging. It’s important that players can safely and simply move tokens between Project GYRI and other networks. Bridge work is ongoing and will allow players to take tokens from the Ethereum network to Project GYRI and back. It’s no secret that bridges have been targeted and exploited to the detriment of ecosystems and communities so we’re spending a lot of time and effort, getting third party audits and really focusing on making sure bridged assets are safe.

Of course we’ll continue to improve infrastructure and core features, tightening bolts, greasing wheels and so on. But the really fun part is already in progress — Game Integration. You may have already heard that Spider Tanks has integrated a Project GYRI contract and we’re working closely together to make sure that works great and enables some of the cool features we’ve all been anticipating. Town Crush is going from proof of concept to full blown product so there’ll be work to do to enhance the contract and add features there too. In addition, more games have started the process of designing their integration strategies and I for one can’t wait!

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