Kickstarter-backed Board Game Bitcoin Empire Ships
Bitcoin Economy-Centered Board Game Comes to the Market
Bitcoin Empire, a bitcoin-themed board game designed to take advantage of a recent revival in the entertainment medium, has been shipped and should arrive to its fifty Kickstarter backers by January 11, according to its creators. They hope their product will be a modern day equivalent of the economics-themed board game, Monopoly.
Created in 1903, Monopoly remains popular to this day. Further, Robert Kiyosaki created a similar game called ‘Cashflow’ for the modern debt-based economy based on the traditional roll-and-move gameplay.
A fan of modern board games like Glory to Rome, Letters from Whitechapel and Dominion, Bitcoin Empire co-founder Dave Thomas, along with Ting Yi L., see their card game as an educational opportunity.
“We created Bitcoin Empire to educate people about cash flow using modern board gaming mechanics like multi-use cards and hand management, while at the same time introducing bitcoin to a new audience,” explains the Bitcoin Empire co-designer. “Although people’s money exists as numbers on computers in the modern day, the blood, sweat and tears spent to earn that money is very real to people. But, bitcoin remains very unreal.
“Few have a real-world association with bitcoin,” Mr. Thomas believes. Media outlets often use the physical coin by defunct startup Casascius Coins as physical representations of bitcoin, for instance, which is probably more a misrepresentation than anything. People playing Bitcoin Empire hold playing cards with the bitcoin logo on the back, using them in a similar way to cash.
“Through this simulation of transactions, I can imagine people becoming comfortable with this new paradigm and interested in investing in crypto-currency,” the board game designer reasons. The founders hope their fifty Kickstarter backers introduce their friends and family to Bitcoin via our game.
“The core of our game and our Kickstarter campaign was the satirisation of notable Bitcoin events in the mainstream media. For example, Dorian Nakamoto being fingered as Satoshi Nakamoto and the Mt Gox incident,” explains Mr. Thomas.
To make the game more appealing to non-bitcoiners, Bitcoin Empire features a secret card featuring Pepe The Frog, Audrey Hepburn, Doge and Jennifer Lawrence.
Millennials Help to Revive Board Games
Global sales of games and puzzles grew from $9.3 billion in 2013 to $9.6 billion this year, claims Euromonitor International. Part of this growth is fueled by millennials, one of bitcoin’s leading age demographics.
To be sure, bitcoin users have critiqued Bitcoin Empire.
“A few of them wished that the gameplay simulated the mining process to help educate people around the technology,” Mr. Thomas divulges. “But we believe that centering the game around the current Bitcoin economy will help highlight the risks of trusting third party banks and exchanges with your money. I think it’s more important to help people take the first step of investing in crypto-currency safely.”
Would you play a Bitcoin-themed board game? Let us know in the comments!
Images Courtesy of Bitcoin Empire