Introducing FOAM Party - FOAM Developer Grants


#1

Introducing FOAM Party

Hi All!
My name is Marcus, I run Gatekeeper Network. Our goal is to create a hardware-agnostic operating system that brings trustless computing and scalable Ethereum technology to create self-sovereign IoT devices.

We are very happy to be building out, and introducing FOAM Party in collaboration with the FOAM grants program. This project is admittedly a bit “different” than some of the things you may be used to. We think FOAM Party explores some really cool dynamics of what can be done with FOAM while helping further the underlying protocol technology.
This post is going to try and cover what FOAM Party is. We will do our best to follow up questions. Note that some of the details in the documents have changed and will be in flux a bit during development.

What IS FOAM Party?

So from the top then, FOAM Party is a geolocation-based game that uses some pretty sick custom autonomous IoT hardware, called Totems to play the world’s first decentralized verifiable presence game. “Totems”- as in the widgets from the movie Inception that are the arbitrators of reality and dream. In our case, Totems are the arbitrators between the blockchain/FOAM protocol and physical geospatial location.

Totem…Whaaa :robot:?

Totems, as they relate to FOAM Party, are essentially true IoT Ethereum connected “smart locks” :lock: that players will physically find, capture, move and lock around publically accessible locations within randomly selected FOAM Signals.
We know this sounds like a lot to imagine so we built an early interactive AR render of the Totem you can play within your web browser right here:

Click Here to visit Totem AR Demo!

Players download the FOAM Party App inside of the Alice SDK on their mobile device to interact with Totems in real life and play FOAM Party!

Click Here for FOAM Party Gameplay Manual

TL;DR FOAM Party

FOAM Party is a domination-type capture the flag :checkered_flag: game that takes place in real life, using IoT devices that are connected autonomously to the FOAM protocol. Think along the lines of Pokemon Go; instead of catching virtual Pokemon and spoofing GPS location; players will use their phones to interact with: capture, unlock, move and relock physical Totems around public locations. Players can only interact with totems by being physically near them, and we generate a cryptographic proof of this that serves to progress game actions inside of the FOAM Party Smart Contract logic.

Pretty Cool Eh?

For the nerds in the room :raising_hand_man::nerd_face:, we have a lot more hardware/software implementation information in the abbreviated proposal:

Click Here For Implementation Details

Some key points on how this benefits the FOAM Protocol & Community :+1:

Proving Presence/Location Autonomously

  • Totems and moreover the game provably verify that a person has physically visited a Totem, and therefore physical location. (ETH Signed Message challenge-nonce over BLE)

Using Next-Generation IoT Hardware

  • This is true IoT hardware, not a Rasbperry Pi or a small computer. That means that these devices will last > a week on battery life before needing to be recharged.

  • We’re also building the Totem hardware with off the shelf parts; including the hacker/tinker favorite ESP32 platform. Really, sans the custom chassis all of the parts can be ordered on Amazon (most likely Primed) for sub-$100

With Next-Generation Connectivity

  • Totems have a plethora of connectivity including next generation 5G cellular data services (LTE-m/NB-IoT) that enable them to interact with the blockchain/FOAM protocol, each other and players.

  • They also have built-in LoRa connectivity; for long term Proof Of Location via LoRa TDOA as described in the whitepaper. We have a few other cool ideas for using these as well.

Leveraging Next Generation Decentralized Protocols

  • Along with the FOAM Party logic, totems run GatekeeperOS at the core which enables totems to become “self-sovereign” and autonomously interact with the Ethereum blockchain using their own wallet keys stored in encrypted flash, like an autonomous hardware wallet (don’t worry we won’t have actual funds on board).
  • Furthermore, it enables totems and users to play the game through scalable layer2 state channel technology, totems and players will play the majority of FOAM Party off-chain via state channels for a smooth experience.

Through Gamified FOAM Protocol Interactions :bar_chart:

  • FOAM Party incentivizes and gamifies cartographers actions as Totems have to be placed within a Signal, inside of a larger “Party Area”. ie. Players have to physically visit and place Totems within a Signal.

  • Furthermore, based on cartographer actions over time, derived from FOAM Tools, players who are active cartographers receive an in-game bonus See. Disco Tiles/Dance Floor Reveal.

So… where’s the party :tada:?

We’re planning to deploy the first season of FOAM Party around midtown Manhattan. Possibly Brooklyn. In the future, we want to make these as location agnostic as possible, but for the inaugural games, it is important for game mechanics to play in a place with a lot of FOAM POI Signals.

And lastly, some sizzle shots of a PoC Totem mockup and its innards with banana for scale :banana:

Stay tuned for more frequent updates, and follow us on Twitter @gatekeeper_net

Thank You All,
Marcus


#2

great write up Marcus. glad to have you here. from the DAO all the way to FOAM, im finally gonna get to mess with some smart locks it looks like lol.


#3

Love it! Can’t wait to play it along RT66!


#4

Thanks for sharing @gatekeeper
FOAM party is very interesting because it opens a lot of possibilities in gaming. I love the technology aspect of your project.

That being said, to be honest and constructive in my feedback, it looks like a headache for the user to understand the game. A 12 page instruction manual to understand how to play is a lot of effort to ask. I also think that you are building more than the MVP required for the minimal gaming experience needed to iterate on with feedback loops, I say that because it appears that there are a lot of “features” or “rules” nor required for a v1. The v1 goal shouldn’t be to have the full experience you have in mind (with all the friction that comes with it and decisions made without feedback) but the minimal experience to “wow” the user and hook him.


#5

@cartocrypto Thank you for the feedback. I know you guys like details so that’s the instruction manual and proposal with the best version our team could ideate. Of course, with the caveat from the original post, “… some of the details in the documents have changed and will be in flux a bit during development”. In congruence with your statement about requirements for an MVP / v1; I agree, and to be clear we are not putting the cart before the horse when developing. Instead, we are focusing on the core functionality that benefits FOAM protocol as a whole ie. embedded radios, hardware, BLE App integration etc. before focusing on details like final gameplay variables. Cheers


#6

@gatekeeper whats the optimal number of players for the beginning areas of the game?