back to article The bloke behind Star Fox is building a blockchain based casino. No, really

One of the brains behind classic Nintendo game Star Fox is launching a blockchain-based online gambling service that could leave regulators stumped – and says he has raised $200,000 from the public to launch it. Argonaut Software founder Jez San’s Funfair project aims to put online gambling onto blockchain, the technology …

  1. Sigmund Fraud

    Was done way back in 2013

    1. Lee D


      Was going to say exactly the same.

    2. Ben Tasker Silver badge


      Exactly what I was going to post.

      It's in active use by various sites too, including a number of Bitcoin gambling sites, so it's not like it's a theoretical concept that hasn't yet been put to the test.

      1. wolfetone Silver badge


        I didn't know about that website, but if I did I would've posted it.

        1. John Watts


          Me too!!!!1!

          1. Prst. V.Jeltz Silver badge


            I definitely didn't know , but now ive found out ill post it.

            In case anyone missed the first 8 times


  2. frank ly

    Robots, robots, everywhere.

    "You can be sent a link, click on it and you’re in a game.”

    In its purest form, gambling is redistribution of money between the players, and the house with organised gambling. In the future, will you know who the other players are and what you're actually gambling on?

  3. Cronus

    I fail to see how this stops the anecdote mentioned in the article. How can using blockchain stop admins from looking at player's cards etc?

    1. mythicalduck

      Not only that, but say you configure your "RNG" to force a favourable hand to the house for a percentage of games, a blockchain won't reveal that either.

  4. Mystic Megabyte

    Just throw your money out the window...

    I stopped playing one-armed bandits when they stopped having an arm. As for online gambling, feck that!

    1. Simon Harris
      Paris Hilton

      Re: Just throw your money out the window...

      At least with mechanical slot machines you got some exercise for your right arm while gambling...

      Now we have the internet there are other ways to exercise one's arm.

      Obviously ----------------->

      1. Cereberus

        Re: Just throw your money out the window...

        Now we have the internet there are other ways to exercise one's arm.

        I know what you mean - putting my glasses on and taking them off again is hard work.

      2. Ugotta B. Kiddingme

        Re: Just throw your money out the window...

        Now we have the internet there are other ways to exercise one's arm.

        Just remember, darts/slot machines with one arm and beer/other activities with the opposite arm. Otherwise...

  5. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge


    Taking poker sites as an example, I don't think that the general online player has an actual problem with the transactional nature of the financial side because (most) of the larger sites employ methods where the "cash" aspect of the game can be audited and there are methods of comeback in the event of issues.

    The problem I see, and tjhat that stopped me from playing online is that players simply don't trust the numerical or RNG'ing engines being used to power the sites; and there are many pieces of detailed analysis that have been done where the long-term card odds from online games have been found to be highly suspect when placed alongside standard live table games. As a previous poster also pointed out, this also doesn't seem to protect the player against organised poker "bots" or internal admins from skewing the games in other ways towards preferred players, or the house.

    Perhaps this is a solution - but from the detail given in the (albeit limited) article, it doesn't sound like it.

    Further reading required I guess.

    1. Lee D

      Re: But...

      Poker is very different to other games, being a game requiring perfect play in order to achieve the stated odds.

      Roulette, craps, fruit machines, etc. do not.

      If you're playing poker online, you need to know that you're playing perfectly in order to avoid bots, etc., in which case there are much easier ways of winning a poker game (e.g. play against random people in real life).

      In almost all other games, there's no point in playing as you have no contorl over the situation and you may as well just be putting "£5 at 0.3 probability" - it's essentially the same and the "game" has no effect on the outcome. With poker, it's actually worse. You play perfectly and you might get those odds in the long-run. You don't, and your odds are indeterminably lower.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: But...

        With online poker you have the option of playing worse players than you. If you're really good you can even exploit the bots (I'm barely good enough to find people worse than me - I went be exploiting bots any time soon).

  6. Mike Richards Silver badge

    Jez San

    Biggest claim to fame has to be Starglider surely?

    1. Simon Harris

      Re: Jez San

      I may well still have the audio cassette that came with that somewhere.

      1. St3n

        No need for the tape!

  7. ratfox
    Paris Hilton

    But does it do a barrel roll?


    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: But does it do a barrel roll?

      You've got a bogey on your tail!

  8. Christian Berger

    Cool, a new market for miners

    Since miners essentially control what happens with the block chain, and mining is controlled by a few miners (the main failure of Bitcoin), they could easily offer "cheating as a service". Just make them sign a different reality.

  9. David Pearce

    The blockchain technology might be (ab)used to make the casino harder to block by ISPs and firewalls

  10. Cynic_999 Silver badge

    Seems like the digital equivalent of buying casino chips and gambling with those instead of cash. I also fail to see how it will affect the ability of employees or the online casino from cheating.

    The chance of winning anything in a casino depends to a very large degree on the fact that the order of the cards, roll of the dice, spin of the wheel etc. are all random. You can have high confidence in that randomness when you can see the mechanism that is determining the outcome, but I have to take on trust that a digital simulation is producing random results - and the person I am trusting is the person who has everything to gain by making it NON-random.

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