After Axie Infinity Hack, Will Other Play-2-Earn Games Be Hacked Soon?

After Axie Infinity Hack, Will Other Play-2-Earn Games Be Hacked Soon?

The recent incident affecting the Ronin Network – which runs the game Axie Infinity – has many people on edge. It is a problematic development that affects the wider play-to-earn gaming industry. However, the game itself was never hacked, and no other games have been compromised.

Axie Infinity Hack is a Ronin issue

It is important to get the details regarding the latest Axie Infinity Hack correct. Many believe the popular game to earn game itself was affected by the security incident. Although the Axie network is built on the back of a security incident, it is not true. Hackers targeted the Ronin bridge, a piece of infrastructure built by Ronin’s developers, connecting the Ethereum and Ronin networks.

The incident that affected the bridge led to over $600 million being stolen. But, more worryingly, it went unnoticed for six days, which is still puzzling today. The hacker – or hackers – managed to compromise five out of nine validator nodes running the Ronin network. The malicious transactions were agreed upon, ensuring that the network would process them. A total of 173,600 ETH and 25.5 million USDC were transferred.

When underlying infrastructure is exposed to an attack, it reflects negatively on all projects that utilize the technology stack. For example, Axie Infinity is one of today’s most popular games to earn money, but few people know about Ronin Bridge. It’s easy to assume that the attack affected the game, even if that’s not the case. Also, the attack did not involve smart contract exploits, like other similar incidents in recent months.

It is crucial to understand that the Axie Infinity game and its assets have not been hacked or compromised. However, the Ronin network and the self-built Ronin bridge were vulnerable due to a deliberate decision by the developers to rely on a limited number of validator nodes and allow one device to control several of them. The network will receive an upgrade and the team will adjust the validator thresholds.

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Are other P2E games at risk?

Relying on bridges to connect different blockchains can be a risk factor. Decentralizing these solutions across chains is essential, as “entrusting” a select few with the power to control the network will not work. The Ronin Network hack has made that all too clear once again. However, the incident serves as a valuable lesson for projects that are operational today or still under development.

Incidents like these don’t mean chain building can’t work. Splinterlands, one of the leading blockchain play-to-earn games, resides on the Hive and WAX blockchains. Also, it uses Polygon and BNB Chain for in-game assets. The team issued smart contracts for these respective chains and leverages TeraBlock for token bridging through a burn-and-mint strategy.

Moreover, there are still many games to make money that do not seek cross-chain opportunities today. For example, Plutonians is an upcoming game on Solana that creates various mechanisms to allow players to access virtually unlimited content. Also, it’s a very accessible game for everyone, removing the need to be on the right “chain” or trade assets to and from other networks.

Play-to-earn games in development can learn valuable lessons from the Ronin incident. For example, Affyn, a project that recently raised $20 million to build the Metaverse game, can ensure that they build their infrastructure correctly to prevent incidents from happening. The gift of hindsight is a powerful incentive to do better and build more secure blockchain games.

The recent incident affecting the Ronin Network – which runs the game Axie Infinity – has many people on edge. It is a problematic development that affects the wider play-to-earn gaming industry. However, the game itself was never hacked, and no other games have been compromised.

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Axie Infinity Hack is a Ronin issue

It is important to get the details regarding the latest Axie Infinity Hack correct. Many believe the popular game to earn game itself was affected by the security incident. Although the Axie network is built on the back of a security incident, it is not true. Hackers targeted the Ronin bridge, a piece of infrastructure built by Ronin’s developers, connecting the Ethereum and Ronin networks.

The incident that affected the bridge led to over $600 million being stolen. But, more worryingly, it went unnoticed for six days, which is still puzzling today. The hacker – or hackers – managed to compromise five out of nine validator nodes running the Ronin network. The malicious transactions were agreed upon, ensuring that the network would process them. A total of 173,600 ETH and 25.5 million USDC were transferred.

When underlying infrastructure is exposed to an attack, it reflects negatively on all projects that utilize the technology stack. For example, Axie Infinity is one of today’s most popular games to earn money, but few people know about Ronin Bridge. It’s easy to assume that the attack affected the game, even if that’s not the case. Also, the attack did not involve smart contract exploits, like other similar incidents in recent months.

It is crucial to understand that the Axie Infinity game and its assets have not been hacked or compromised. However, the Ronin network and the self-built Ronin bridge were vulnerable due to a deliberate decision by the developers to rely on a limited number of validator nodes and allow one device to control several of them. The network will receive an upgrade and the team will adjust the validator thresholds.

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Are other P2E games at risk?

Relying on bridges to connect different blockchains can be a risk factor. Decentralizing these solutions across chains is essential, as “entrusting” a select few with the power to control the network will not work. The Ronin Network hack has made that all too clear once again. However, the incident serves as a valuable lesson for projects that are operational today or still under development.

Incidents like these don’t mean chain building can’t work. Splinterlands, one of the leading blockchain play-to-earn games, resides on the Hive and WAX blockchains. Also, it uses Polygon and BNB Chain for in-game assets. The team issued smart contracts for these respective chains and leverages TeraBlock for token bridging through a burn-and-mint strategy.

Moreover, there are still many games to make money that do not seek cross-chain opportunities today. For example, Plutonians is an upcoming game on Solana that creates various mechanisms to allow players to access virtually unlimited content. Also, it’s a very accessible game for everyone, removing the need to be on the right “chain” or trade assets to and from other networks.

Play-to-earn games in development can learn valuable lessons from the Ronin incident. For example, Affyn, a project that recently raised $20 million to build the Metaverse game, can ensure that they build their infrastructure correctly to prevent incidents from happening. The gift of hindsight is a powerful incentive to do better and build more secure blockchain games.

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