Web3 Galaxy Brain đŸŒŒđŸ§ 

Web3 Galaxy Brain

Fast Fiat Onramps with Wyre and Horizon Games

21 June 2022


Show more


Nicholas: Welcome to Web3 Galaxy Brain. My name is Nicholas. At the end of each week, I sit down for a casual Friday afternoon conversation with some of the brightest people building Web3. On today's episode, I'm joined by Peter Kjeltica, CEO of Horizon Games, creators of blockchain trading card game Skyweaver, Jamal Raees, blockchain strategy head at Wire, and Craig Liu, project manager at Wire. This episode is all about SmartRamp. Wire's new fast fiat on-ramp and how it's enabling more players to get started playing Skyweaver quickly. SmartRamp is an API that lets people interact with EVM smart contract functions directly from a credit card transaction. We also discuss Horizon's Sequence smart contract wallet and NiftySwap, Horizon's ERC20 to ERC1155 AMM DEX. It was great talking with Peter, Jamal, and Craig about the many possibilities that credit card access to blockchain functions might enable. I hope you enjoy the show. All right. Welcome to the show, Peter, Craig, Jamal will be joining us soon. Really glad to have you here to talk about Wire and how Horizon Games is using the SmartRamp's tech in some of your new products. Thanks for coming on today.

Craig L: Yeah, happy to be here.

Peter Kieltyka: Thank you, Nicholas. Thanks for hosting us.

Nicholas: Yeah, no problem. Okay, to get things started, I mean, we might as well do the traditional thing. How long have each of you been involved in crypto and what got you started? Maybe we can start with Peter and then go to Craig.

Peter Kieltyka: Sure. I guess I have to probably think, getting into crypto was around 2015, 2014-ish. Just really fascinated by distributed systems and cryptography and hearing of a digital asset that was native to the internet got me really excited. And then being in Toronto and of course hearing of Ethereum is when I got really excited about crypto, just kind of the potential of constructing these digital economies. So that was, I think, closer to 2017 is when I was actually doing some real building and some real development. So that's my journey.

Nicholas: And actually, when did you get started on Horizon Games?

Peter Kieltyka: That's a good question. Yeah. So we actually got started in 2017. The summer of 2017 was when I was committed to saying, I know my next startup is going to be doing something in blockchain, as I recognized. Just a lot of exciting potential of what could be done with these new internet-level protocols. And that's when I was like, what can I really do with this stuff? And to the extent that normal users can use. And that's when I thought, there's a really strong play. Of course, we're talking about digital goods and assets. So that's where video games have already had those for decades. So to me, the focal point was around, okay, let's just build a video game out of this stuff. And then while doing that, we were on the path of, okay, well, there's so much primitive infrastructure and there's a lot of necessary building blocks. And that's where Sequence has emerged. So I started building, ideating in the summer and then I started building a team in the fall. And then by the wintertime, we were incorporated. And then by January 2018, we were five of us on a kitchen table plowing away.

Nicholas: And your background is in programming or more on the business side?

Peter Kieltyka: Yes, I'm an engineer. So I did engineering school and built a number of companies where I was the CTO and co-founder. And I'm also the chief architect at Horizon across the product. So I'm a very technical CEO, which is very unusual, but I think helpful for Web3 space.

Nicholas: Yeah, awesome. And I'm sure we'll get into some of the various infrastructure you guys have been working on for so many years. There's, I mean, 1155 standard is one that comes to mind, but I don't know, the engine wallet you've been involved in, there's Sequence now, and now this integration with Wire, I'm sure we'll get into some. Super cool. And Craig, how did you get started in crypto? When did you come into the space?

Craig L: Yeah, so I'm not as much of an OG as Peter is. He's been in it since like 2014, 2015. But I got started at a similar time as many of us in the summer of 2017, when I just started investing as kind of like a side hobby. And then I think as a byproduct of investing, I just got more and more invested in the tech and actually got curious about how to like build within the space. And that's how I got started working for crypto companies. So my first company was Circle. And in that job, I kind of cut my teeth, like learning about crypto and just learning how to build within the ecosystem, because I think there's a big difference between building versus investing. And then I've just been in the crypto industry since then.

Nicholas: Yeah, so I guess we should get into what each of you are up to now. I suppose the most audience pleasing is going to be talking about Horizon a little bit. Peter, what's Horizon been up to lately?

Peter Kieltyka: A lot. Well, I guess the most recent developments, of course, is we had Skyweaver go general availability on February 8th, 2022. And Skyweaver, of course, we've been building it for four years, I guess over four years through very iterative developments with a lot of community focus and beta stages. And Skyweaver is now over 300,000 players. But in order for us to have kind of achieved it at that state and all the other things, we had to, of course, build Sequence and Sequence also went general availability on February 8th of 2022. And so now these products are mature, they're working well, they're robust, there's really strong architectural integrity. And now it's about the next evolution of Skyweaver, of course, under that team, as there's a really rich roadmap that we have ahead. And then on the Sequence side, we're really excited about it. It is a general Ethereum compatible wallet and infrastructure. So what we're really passionate about at Horizon, as it's always been, is about how do we drive utility of Web3. So we made Skyweaver a great piece of content, but now we want to really help other developers introduce great content in a really simple way without having to be blockchain experts, but of course, without compromising any of the great blockchain protocols as well. So just offering a full stack for development, including a very special wallet. The Sequence wallet is very unique and special in that it's a smart contract based wallet and there's extra crazy stuff it can do compared to traditional EOA wallets. But yeah, so the focus of Horizon is just kind of going towards more maturity and growth, growing our team. So of course, we're hiring across all disciplines. So if someone is passionate in the space, please reach out. And of course, we're very excited about, there's always learnings, right? Like when we had released Skyweaver, we didn't anticipate, we always did consider how we're going to spend in the game, like people who are new to crypto. But we did think that the different fiat rent providers kind of have us covered in that state. And we discovered that it wasn't quite the case. And this is why we're very excited to partner on the SmartRamps product. It really came out of that need and the Wire team has been just super cool. And so yeah, we're super stoked to be here and getting to deliver SmartRamps to Skyweaver users and of course, everyone else who wants to use it through Sequence as well.

Nicholas: Before we jump into SmartRamps and what Wire's been up to, can you explain a little bit about Sequence and what makes it cool? I feel like a lot of people are not familiar with it yet.

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah, for sure. For sure. So it's really cool about Sequence is that it's like I said, it's an Ethereum compatible wallet. So it works on Ethereum mainnet, works on Polygon, works on Binance Smart Chain, work on Arbitrum, Avalanche, Phantom, etc. But one of the things about it is that it uses a new type of account primitive. So where typical accounts are called EOAs or externally owned accounts, the Sequence wallet is actually a smart contract. So assets live inside of a smart contract that a user controls and can have multiple keys to actually manage the control of that wallet. And that is pretty cool because again, now you have multi keys, you can rotate keys, you can have device level keys, you have a greater level of security and control, better recovery. So there's fundamentally at a really low level, like I said, there's a new type of primitive of an account type. And this is also something you can see that Vitalik Buterin is talking a whole lot about with his EIP-4337 around account abstraction. And this is exactly kind of what he's pointing out and the things that smart contract wallets enable. And Sequence is very cool because it's very much in line with the 4337 already. And we can actually work, it's compatible with the existing state of Ethereum right now. I think the 4337 will create a lot more standardization around these things, which is cool. But yeah, to talk more about, there's a lot to unpack in the whole world. The smart contract wallets is like a one hour podcast in itself. But what I can say is also super fancy is the ability to do a different type of transactions. So this notion of meta transactions. So, you know, one of the big problems around wallets is, of course, key management, but it is also is transacting on a blockchain is a challenge for many users and how they think about gas and pricing. And, you know, what if you're on a layer two or, you know, on a network like Polygon and you don't have Matic or you're on Binance, you don't have BNB token or you're on Avalanche, you don't have AVAX, etc. Right. You know, these are major friction points because now perhaps you have acquired some NFT or acquired some kind of a good in your wallet and there it is. But you actually can't, you can't really do anything with it. Right. You can sign messages, but you can't actually, can't even send it to somebody. Can't sell it. And so one of the neat things about, you know, what a smart contract wallet does, you know, like Sequence, you know, Argent is also looking at this stuff. Amber wallet and there's some other, you know, a class of wallets that are emerging. So I'm not sure if all of them do this. I actually don't think they all do, but they all can. They all technically could do it. And so what you could do now is actually have, you don't have to worry about the gas fee. You can pay your network gas fee and any type of ERC20 token. you can pay on the Polygon network. You can do it for any arbitrary contract call. You could pay your network gas fee in USDC or DAI or ETH or USDT or some other random ERC20 token, as long as a relay will accept it. Even cooler than that, you can actually do these things called sponsored transactions. And those are really powerful because what they do is now adapt, could say, hey, you know, for these contracts, if a user is ever talking to these sets of contracts, like my token contract to transfer or maybe a marketplace contract, you know what? I'm actually going to pay for it on the user's behalf. And so to the user, the actual gas fee will be free. And so suddenly on an Ethereum, in an Ethereum ecosystem, you have this kind of cool experience, like people are excited about in Solana. We're like, oh, users don't have to even think about gas. Gas is not a thing. But of course, in Solana, as we know, you know, that it wasn't super sustainable and they're going to be introducing a gas market as necessary. But in this case, we're still preserving the gas market. But now we're pushing the gas market over to the debt. I mean, there's so much to say, but that's the gist of the sequence. And to kind of give you guys that it's the wallet, but we very much focus on the infrastructure that enables this great usability. That's that's kind of the whole point. And you can use it across any any device, any screen and so forth.

Nicholas: Awesome. So I guess that's a great point. to transition to talking to Craig and Jamal. So Jamal, welcome. So Craig is PM on this SmartRamps project we're going to talk about today. And Jamal is head of blockchain strategy, both at Wire. So maybe, Craig, you could explain a little bit what is SmartRamps and what's the problem that it's trying to solve?

Craig L: Yeah, definitely. So SmartRamps at a high level is a collection of one or more smart contract calls that when executed results in an output. So the output being some sort of output from a smart contract that you're interacting with. And that output can range from like NFTs to yield generated tokens to DAO tokens. It can really be anything that a smart contract can output. And what SmartRamps allows is users to essentially execute this sequence of on-chain transactions and paying for that entire sequence execution with fiat. So, for example, if the user wants to purchase an NFT directly with fiat, what they'll do is they'll pay Wire the cost of the SmartRamps transaction and then Wire will then execute the smart contract calls on behalf of the user to purchase the NFT. And the NFT will end up in the end user's wallet. So the user doesn't have to do anything in regards to gas management, signing on-chain transactions, etc., etc. It really abstracts a lot of the complexity when it comes to interacting with the blockchain, especially for first-time users that are just onboarding into the ecosystem.

Nicholas: So I guess the advantage, one advantage of this would be that a developer could allow credit card based customers to interact with their smart contracts without having to resort to a more centralized blockchain. They could use a really decentralized blockchain, but have this like really convenient on-ramp where you don't need to learn about Ether, Weth or anything like this, or even gas or 1559 pricing, etc. But you could just make a credit card payment and have the result, which could be an NFT or something else, just pop into a wallet that belongs to you. Is that a good summary?

Craig L: Yeah, that's definitely a good summary. Yeah, it really just simplifies the whole process of onboarding new users. And it brings a lot of liquidity to these different ecosystems by bringing liquidity that otherwise would have been kind of blocked by the complex onboarding process that crypto currently has. So SmartRamp essentially fills in that gap by introducing this like simple and quick on-ramp solution into smart contract outputs.

Nicholas: So it does require that the user, the customer have some kind of wallet, right? There's no custodial option by default. You'd have to point the resulting NFT or whatever it is that you're doing on chain somewhere.

Craig L: Yeah, that's correct. So it does require the user to have a wallet, either non-custodial or custodial, ideally a wallet that supports transacting with the output of the SmartRamp. So, for example, if they're receiving NFTs, they might want to integrate with, for example, a wallet so that they can actually manage that NFT balance and transact on chain with it.

Peter Kieltyka: But yeah, correct.

Craig L: They'll have to spin up their own wallet and send the output to that wallet.

Nicholas: So, Peter, why is that useful in the context of something like Sequence? Does it let you onboard people more easily or something?

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah, I think, as you said, it's a really cool interface, you know, programmatic interface from like a Fiat, like a Web 2.0, Web 3.0, kind of like connecting those rails. But I'll kind of tell you like from where this need came out of. It actually came from Skyweaver, right? Because Skyweaver is a video game for, you know, it's a TCG game that anyone can come in and play and have a great time with. You don't have to be a blockchain expert. For many players, it's the very first type of crypto. And then they come in and we have this, you know, they want to buy some cards. So also in Skyweaver, you know, we have 530 different types of cards that you could potentially buy. And we have a philosophy given that, you know, it's a Web 3.0 oriented game. If you buy it, you own it. Right. So anything you purchase, it's you're going to own it and it's going to live inside of your wallet. So now we have this thing where we have brand new people coming to Skyweaver and first time to crypto and they want to buy some cards and like, well, how do I do it? Right. Well, naturally, what they typically are used to in the e-commerce world is they're used to debit cards and credit cards to make the purchases. And, you know, they don't have crypto. They're not even on an exchange. And even if they do, there's a lot of challenges around moving money around between exchanges, especially on a layer or two. But we can save that for another topic. Right. But let's let's eliminate it. Let's find the fastest e-commerce path. And so it's using your credit card to buy virtual goods by virtual. It was just like you'd have in a video game, like when you're on, you know, a fortnight or on Xbox or Nintendo and you're, you know, Call of Duty and so forth, just buying things directly with with your account. So what typically everyone does, including what Skyweaver did was, you know, so Sequence being the wallet provider, you know, we obviously have these integrated on ramps systems, which are all really cool. And we kind of made this decision to say, you know what? Inside of Skyweaver, we're going to have we're going to use our in-game currency as USDC. So all purchases that you're going to make are going to be through USDC. And we're like, oh, that's really cool. That's like that's going to work wonderfully. Just like it works. You know, when you have in-game credits on Steam, for instance, it's like, you know, these are your credits, but it's really just a US balance or whatever currency, but it's your balance you can spend. Right. And so people would come into our wallet. Exactly. Right. And then you're like, OK, well, so you can come in and you can say, you know what? Yeah, you can buy some USDC with one of the Fiat on ramp providers. But what we found was that when you're buying crypto with a credit card, this isn't a normal type of transaction that payment providers are seeing historically on the Internet. Right. When you're buying crypto, you're buying a cash equivalent type product or good. And so by the time it hits the bank, besides, you know, the amazing technology and fraud detection and all that stuff that that's that wire is built, by the time it hits the bank, a lot of banks will just say, I'm just going to decline this because this is a cash equivalent type good. And this isn't something that we normally offer. versus when you're on like Steam or on, you know, Nintendo, you're you're actually buying something of a category of a virtual good or a digital asset. And that's a different, you know, banks are very used to that. There's like, you know, north of, you know, 50 billion dollars a year of these types of goods. And of course, all in-app purchases on Apple are of this category. And so we were like, you know what? Why are we going? So this is where the need came out of. And I went to wire and I said, you know, why are we having users buy this intermediary currency, you know, USDC? just so they could because all they're doing is they want to buy a good. I like forget that. Let's just go from credit card to buying the NFT directly. And that's pretty much the premise. Right. So and that's what these goods, they don't exist on my central server. Right. They exist on the blockchain. And I can't facilitate that transaction. Right. Because I don't have the licenses that that wire does to be able to go in and make these, you know, moving the money around to make these facilitate the transaction. So but yet, you know, a user could do self custody and they could interface with it. But so we were in a little bit of a challenge there. So, yeah, the idea is now there is. users can actually via the wire smart ramp backend and the sequence wallet integration. We can allow a normal what would seemingly look like a USD type purchase will actually go through the Fiat rails and even interact with the secondary market exchange protocol and make that purchase. And that's it. That's the. that's the whole thing. And so as a result, we will have a much more significant success rate because these are going to be recorded as virtual goods just as as they are.

Nicholas: So basically, it's just. I mean, really, if you think about it, it makes a lot more sense for somebody who's not coming from already having crypto. You wouldn't really want to even if there was no hurdle with the banks accepting the charge, et cetera, or any kind of problems related to that. It would in the prior system mean that you'd have to purchase USDC or whatever intermediary token and then go and purchase the thing that you were actually motivated to purchase. So you've kind of for Skyweaver or for other applications that have similar kind of situation, you can sort of reduce the friction between I want to buy something and I have it in my wallet.

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah, there's a hundred percent. Yeah. I mean, like and obviously if we're if we all care about Web3's growth like this, this is such a crucial step, right? It's not just the people who fight their way through and have to read a million tutorials and struggle through, you know, actually figuring out how this technology works. They just want an e-commerce like experience, but they want to be able to use and access into Web3. They want to own their goods. It's that simple. So, yeah, very, very necessary.

Nicholas: That's cool. What other kind of applications aside from just buying NFTs have you seen people express interest in using SmartRamp for?

Jamal: I can chime in here. Hi, everyone. Sorry I'm a little late. And thanks for setting this up. Super excited to chat with you guys. Honestly, there's interest from all over. And WIRE, we think, as Chris said earlier, WIRE thinks the developers are the best and the best way to usher in the next billion people into crypto. And we see smart contracts as one of the most powerful tools in their toolkit to do so. Really incredible financial mechanisms are being built every day on smart contracts. And like Peter said, where there's so much friction for traditional users to be able to access the smart contracts. So WIRE is just trying to make a simplified way for people to take their traditional assets, fiat assets, whatever they are, and interact with these really powerful tools. The use cases are endless, right? You can talk all the way from DeFi use cases, all the way to insurance contracts, all the way to NFT, all the way to investing in different businesses. There's been a lot of interest across the board. We had some press go out earlier this week and the results have been pretty amazing. The people have been reaching out to us, asking about integrating with their own smart contracts. The architecture here is very general, right? We want to build this in a way where people can either construct their own integrations with smart ramps and be able to submit proposals to us where people can say, here's my smart contract and this is why I think it's a good use case for the next edition smart ramps. We have people that are coming to us and trying to create custom smart contracts for us to build with. So the interest has been everywhere. There's no particular focus as far as what the next iteration of smart ramps look like, but we're exploring use cases within DeFi, exploring use cases on the NFT side, a lot of things within lending, a lot of things with just custody with NFTs and custody with assets as well. But yeah, nothing in particular, but the response has been amazing and we're really excited.

Nicholas: Yeah, I thought about a few different applications that maybe you can let me know what you think. So obviously the simplest one is like a primary sale for some kind of NFT, like we discussed maybe in Skyweaver or something like that. The next level up might be something like, I don't know, an integration with Gem or buying off the secondary OpenSea, etc. And actually, before I move on to other examples, I want to ask, so basically there is like a permission system. Dev would have to have their function call authorized by Wire before it's something that they can integrate directly into their app. or can they permissionlessly do so?

Jamal: That's correct. There is a permission set in the sense that Wire will build out a custom resource name on our servers here that allows our developers to build on our APIs the ability to call that particular smart contract call. It's a use case process. Obviously, we're a very regulated entity here, so we want to make sure we're not doing any unlicensed activity or any sort of activity that will hurt our potential users and our customer base as well. But it's a light process. There's going to be two versions of it where we go out and we actually source our own custom integrations with custom smart contracts that we just think are powerful, smart contracts for the ecosystem. And then there's another side of it where people will be able to take our existing infrastructure, submit a proposal to us where they can submit their particular smart contract for us to build out an integration for or they can even potentially build out their own integration and push it to us. But yeah, both sides of the equation where we go out and actually look for strategic smart contracts to partner up with and then other people who see a strategic alignment with Wire can submit their proposals to us.

Nicholas: Cool. So let's explore some more wild applications. So I was thinking you could be going straight from a credit card into like a year in vault and earning yield on some tokens that you didn't own previously. You could buy things like leveraged ETH directly from a credit card, like IC ETH from Index Co-op, COOP, whatever it's called, with a credit card. Or actually the craziest one I was thinking about too actually are one, donating to a crowdfund directly from a credit card. But the crowdfund is happening crypto wise, which would be interesting. Or participating in something like a syndicate, syndicate, I think it's dot com, the like sort of investment clubs. You could potentially do so directly from a credit card also, which could be interesting to people who are, I don't know if late comers to crypto is correct, but at least arriving now. Or the really craziest one I was thinking of was Kali DAO from LexDAO, which lets you spin up LLCs similar to syndicate or a bunch of options. There's a Toko, Autonomous, a bunch of different things out there. But basically send a transaction to a function call on a contract on Ethereum and spin up a series LLC from it. You could potentially do that from a credit card too. And depending on the gas price, I think you could do it for under 50 bucks. You could be spinning up an LLC without even having to have on ramped previously. I wonder if those are things that you think would be viable in the future.

Craig L: Yeah, those are all definitely supportable. Just to touch on a couple of the examples they provided. For example, with Yearn, we could allow users to buy Y tokens directly as opposed to having to buy the initial input token, let's say like USDC, and then having to go through all the entire process to actually mint the Y tokens. And on Syndicate DAO, I briefly looked into it. But for example, users can on ramp into ERC20 mirror shares that represent partial ownership of someone's investing DAO that they spun up through Syndicate. Yeah, just to name a couple of examples of what's feasible.

Jamal: Yeah, I mean, essentially, the architecture is built where we can leverage the true interoperability, the true power of sequence that's just a smart contract wallet to allow us to interact with pretty much any smart contract call, right? They've built this really powerful generic technology that allows you to kind of service so many different use cases. So the architecture is designed very generically on purpose because who knows where the future of smart contracts will go? and we want to be able to stay open ended for that as well. I mean, a lot of use cases have been thrown around all of those completely possible as well. We've talked about allowing, you know, staking directly from your bank account with Uniswap. Imagine contributing to a liquidity pool and having Wire take your bank payment and be able to convert that into crypto, use the power of sequence wallet to directly interact with Uniswap contracts. Wire's got a lot of just stuff of different payment methods, just different pieces of technology that we've built out in our robust fiat payment stack. We're combining that with the power of sequence wallet and the true interoperability of a smart contract wallet to basically just push any traditional fiat payment through a smart contract wallet directly to any smart contract call. So it's very generically designed on purpose because we want, you know, developers like sequence, developers like different places all over the world to be able to come to us and say, here's the future of smart contracts, here's the future of smart ramps. This is what we think is the best use of that iteration. So we want people to come to us and tell us what the best version is.

Nicholas: Yeah, I'm so deeply crypto-pilled and I just, you know, I've been earning my income in crypto for a while now even. So maybe something like a year. So I'm so deep in it, it's almost difficult to imagine it being easier. I was hiring somebody the other day and they asked if I could do PayPal transactions and they sort of scrunched up my face. I'd rather send them USDC on Polygon or something. But it does seem like there could be a lot of applications for selling products that are or whatever kind of experiences where it's something that doesn't exist in the fiat world. But having that easy fiat on ramp is super convenient. It's a little harder for me to imagine in a way because I'm so, you know, because I look at Metamask more than my bank account or bank website. But I'm curious, do you think people will use this as like an initial transaction and then ultimately be working primarily from their wallet with whatever revenues they made off of secondary sales of whatever they initially got involved in through a smart ramp? Or is it something where you anticipate there'll be like people who exclusively interact with the chain for a while or multiple chains for a while using smart ramp, just bringing money into the ecosystem, but not so much swapping and using that money that they've brought in through some initial interaction, but instead continuing to interact through their credit card as the primary on ramp?

Jamal: I mean, I'd love I'd love Peter's take on this, just because obviously he gets to deal with the user base at Skyweaver and understands how those people react. But to me, I'm a crypto native. I have a lot of comfortability using my Metamask, but I still see the validity of this even for myself. I obviously live in the real world and I have traditional fiat assets, of course. To me, I see it as a great addition to my crypto functionality. Sometimes I don't want to have to worry about how much money I have, how much gas I'm paying, whatever. I know I have X, Y, Z dollars and I just want to be able to buy a blockchain asset as well. So for me, like being a crypto native person, I think it's equally as valuable to me as it would be to a non-native crypto person as well. But Peter, I don't know if you have any more to add on that.

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah, I mean, 100 percent. I think it's really clear that, you know, we're just at the very beginning of crypto. It's so early. And I mean, you know, I agree, Nicholas, like I'm like you, man, I would rather send some USDC, but, you know, we're not the average person by any like the average user. Right. We've been in crypto for a long enough time and we're fully converted. But, you know, there's there's already, you know, 4.7 billion people with an Internet connection right now. Right. And how many people are actually on Web3? Right. Metamask, which is the biggest wallet, has, I believe, 22 million active users. Like that's tiny, you know, when you think about compared to anything else. And how are these people going to get in? It's not going to be through the struggles of, you know, going through an exchange and, you know, buying crypto. It's like I think what's really exciting, the evolution that I'm excited about is not just about, you know, crypto as an investment class and as an asset, you know, obviously as an asset class, but not just for the purpose of investing in hodling, but really about as a utility and, you know, digital content and the things you can do with crypto as, you know, kind of igniting digital economies. So you're just a user of an application and or of a network. You're just a participant of a particular network, whether it's social or content or video game or metaverse or whatever it may be. And you suddenly start kind of acquiring this crypto through your actions. And of course, that's, you know, the kind of the ultimate. And but it's in order to even participate in some cases or to kind of, you know, get on ramped as a new user. You do need something like, you know, the traditional Web2 Rails to be well connected into the Web3 Rails. And I think, you know, what Wire has done from, you know, bridging these two worlds is very unique because the Web3 Rails are very important. But the Web2 Rails is really where all the money is and where all the users are at. And so to create something very seamless of a connection between these two worlds is really important. And yeah, what I'm going to say is when I think about users coming into Web3, it's the content is the king, right? Users are going to come to the content and come to the things. And that's what's going to get them excited. And that's why they're going to show up. And especially for the masses. And of course, that's going to bring them into all the other exciting things around like staking and DeFi and all. And there's going to be a great education process as well. So, yeah, I mean, I think this is going to be one of the major catalysts. And there's still lots of evolution to this. And I love the ideas you guys were talking about and all the other cool things you can do with smart ramps, smart scripts and the capabilities of them. But it's really just to enable. This is one of the key enablers of mass adoption.

Nicholas: I'm curious, do you have any numbers you can share about, like, maybe how many people are playing Skyweaver? I don't know if you're able to share that, but maybe what proportion are coming from a crypto native origin and what proportion are coming from credit cards?

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah, I can say that of our users, over 50 percent, you know, easily are never, never done any, never touched crypto. Really? Skyweaver? Yeah. It's like their first crypto product. Absolutely. Yeah. And that's that's the whole point. That's why we designed it the way we did, which is it's at the end of the day, it's just. it's a video game that has Web3 that uses Web3 protocols to for its digital assets and economy and marketplace. Like, that's it. And yes, there's a wallet there and it's noncustodial. But this is always what Horizon's been driving towards from four years ago. You know, and this is why wire is very important and smart ramps for this integration so that we can actually monetize those users. Right. Because we've had countless of people tell us, I can't buy anything here, man. Like, I can't get to crypto. It's the ramps don't, you know, they're not working or like the exchanges are really challenging to use and bridging is really difficult, really foreign concept to me. I just want can I use my credit card? And, you know, that's that's it.

Nicholas: Because basically, previously, they'd have to sign up for Coinbase or something or maybe use like a wire widget, I guess, in the app to to buy crypto.

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah. And I think that's like. the thing I think that I keep going on about is that like I'll call it like maybe the dirty little secret of like fiat on ramps and all of them is that banks don't like selling cash equivalent goods over over a credit card. They don't like it. And this is, you know, there's a very crazy use case. Around the NFTs and virtual goods like and and just to tell you, you know, on the call is like, you know, Nicholas, is that we don't actually sell primary goods on Skype. We only have secondary markets. So the smart ramp is actually a secondary marketplace.

Nicholas: Oh, really? So how do they are emitted? by playing the game?

Peter Kieltyka: Yes, that's true. Yeah. So in the first place, yeah, they are actually, yeah, they're emitted and they're created through gameplay, like to the top ranking players, you know, through the rank system of the conquest system. And then if the players want them, well, they have to go buy them on the secondary market from another player. So you've got to win it or buy it from someone else. And then in the marketplace, it's designed very, very cool in that it just feels like a storefront. But behind the scenes, of course, it's a contract with a liquidity pool and all that cool stuff. And then on the smart ramp side of things, it's like, you know, you can't even tell what's going on. Just, you know, making this purchase of you're buying just a normal digital good. And that's that's where all this stuff comes together so seamlessly with very few clicks, you know, but maintaining the integrity of all the Web3, you know, magic.

Nicholas: Actually, this is a great place to talk about is the marketplace. Is it NiftySwap?

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah, exactly. Yeah.

Nicholas: Can you explain a little bit about it? Because I've heard about it, but it's a little bit unclear to me. What is NiftySwap?

Peter Kieltyka: So NiftySwap, it's a DEX protocol for swapping virtual goods, really focusing on obviously like NFT type assets. So it's what's special about it is that instead of a traditional marketplace protocol where they're using an order book based system like OpenSea or 0x or, you know, Seaport and so forth, you know, NiftySwap is actually an automatic market making based protocol where it's really focusing around pooling liquidity on chain. So both sides of the market are put onto the chain and users are able to kind of swap across them. And it's one of the things about it is like, you know, there's a lot of different, you know, there's three. there's a three major popular token standards, ERC20, 721 and 1155. And, you know, NiftySwap specifically is an AMM for the pair of ERC20 to an 1155 contract. So, you know, the combination of those those types of tokens. So if you have 1155 assets and you want to make it very easy for users to be able to to trade with them, you can instantiate a NiftySwap pool. And I mean, anyone can instantiate the pool, actually. You don't have to do it yourself. It's very like Uniswap for 1155s, you know, like that. Yeah. And yeah. And it's kind of cool because you have there's like, you know, the pool becomes like a price oracle. So you know exactly what the price is. There's good price discovery. It's really clear. You can also, you know, instantly purchase and you can also instantly sell. So if you actually have a good in your wallet, you know exactly what the price is because, you know, you can sell it for you can literally do one transaction call and like and sell it at that very instant. You don't have to wait for someone to make you an offer or, you know, try to make an offer to someone to purchase that you can. you can pay with one click of a button. You can sell it. So that's why we did it. You know, we built NiftySwap because we wanted to have. You know, a really simple, you know, simple price discovery and easy liquidity for for users around virtual goods. And we think, you know, these properties are some that's very important for a very healthy virtual good market. And we're very excited about pushing that, you know, more and more and more. And we've been using it in Skyweaver for for some time now. And we are in fact going to be releasing NiftySwap.io quite soon for people to be able to go and make their own pools and then trade across them as well. Very similar to it's a pretty lightweight interface. And we encourage people who do adopt the protocol to build their own first party experience directly inside of their applications. And, you know, users can interface with that. And there's all these other wonderful, cool, interesting properties for people to discover. But it's a neat protocol. And I mean, not to open C is amazing because you definitely want sometimes an order book system and, you know, all the different protocols have their own purpose for the cost of goods and users.

Nicholas: I'm sure everybody knows, but just in case anybody's in the dark, 1155s are it's a bit ironic to say, but sort of fungible NFTs or items that look like NFTs, but there can be multiple, you know, an addition of them. So fits well for items in a game. And it's also something that came out of Horizon Games, right? Philippe is the co-author. I don't know if you're also co-author of the 1155 standard.

Peter Kieltyka: I'm personally not. No, but yeah, Philippe was. And we had some other people on the team who maybe aren't credited, but definitely did assist in the ideation of it. But, you know, it was pretty cool. Yeah, so exactly right. It's really like a class of semi fungible assets. You could have NFTs in there because you could just say there's a quantity of only one of a particular good and suddenly, you know, but yeah, you can have like one one contract representing a basket of these goods.

Nicholas: So some of the advantages of the 1155, it allows you to create an addition sort of natively in the token, unlike 721. So you can have multiple of the same metadata, the same image, same properties, etc. Or you could, as you say, lower the volume down to just one. So it'll behave a lot like a 721 in that case, which you could also do with an ERC20. Actually, it's just that those don't typically have images associated with them. But you can also you get some other advantages like batch transfers and they're more gas efficient for transferring multiples of even different token IDs in the same transaction, I believe. So a lot of cool properties. So it's interesting that NiftySwap is like solving this particular thing for ERC20 to ERC1155 pairs. And then you're using that as the back end for these really simple credit card transactions to purchase those items using this smart ramp tech. It's pretty cool.

Peter Kieltyka: You got it, man. That's a great thing. And because, you know, there's multiple quantity of that same good. If you know, like if you have a particular like Skyweaver card, like the Etheric card and you just sold yours for ten dollars, well, you know, the other Etheric card is also worth somewhere in that range as well. So there is, you know, having the on-chain price oracle for these goods is very useful and especially in gaming, you know, you definitely have multiple, there's multiple kind of quantity for in many cases that you that would make sense to represent in that structure. And so, yeah, it just creates a lot more price efficiency and discovery. And that's what made NiftySwap possible. because of that.

Nicholas: Can you have 1155 to 1155 pairs?

Peter Kieltyka: You actually can. Yes. We actually have a contract that does that, too. But typically what people want to do is have like one buying currency like you could use Ether, USDC or whatever. And then you have all your goods, you know, on the other side.

Nicholas: You could even route between them through the intermediary Ether, Weth or whatever it is.

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah, you definitely could.

Nicholas: Interesting. Do people swap items directly as well, I guess, or are they're mostly going through NiftySwap because it's so convenient?

Peter Kieltyka: Some people do barter. So I think like I don't think NiftySwap is a good protocol for bartering. It's really more like a liquidity pool for instant swapping. But yeah, you could use like. I think Cport is really interesting for that. But there's also a cool protocol, VaporTrade, which is built on Trader.xyz that, you know, lets people kind of barter and swap for goods for goods.

Nicholas: Interesting. And how does that, you know, there's this much rumored pseudo swap V2 AMM. How does NiftySwap compare to that?

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah. You know, I think the I guess we'll see how it looks in the end, but they're still focusing on, you know, ERC20 to 721s. And I think the idea there is you can have, you know, instant buy options so the liquidity can exist and, you know, instantly be able to purchase something. And yeah, that's that's kind of how I'm seeing it. And I know they have some interesting properties. they've taken from Uniswap V3 as well. But I don't know fully the deep dive on the protocol, but I do know they're not really using 1155. So there's certainly some very some differences there. Yeah, sure.

Nicholas: High level comparable. But really, at the end of the day, it's not not something that would be suitable for Skyweaver given the nature of the NFT.

Peter Kieltyka: No, no, it wouldn't be. Yeah, no, it's yeah.

Nicholas: That's interesting. I'm curious about SmartRamp. Is it possible to deploy SmartRamp without having a API key? Is it possible to integrate it into a friend like as an anon?

Jamal: So you can utilize the SmartRamp with a partner. Like, for example, you can go to Skyweaver and be able to use it without creating an account or wire. You do have to get doxed by, you know, submitting some basic information. No need for an ID or anything like that. But we can transact to up to a certain level. If you're a developer trying to build on top of SmartRamp, you will need to create like a wire account to be able to hit our APIs and be able to build on top of our SmartRamp API stack that we have. And that does require a small, light KYB process as well. So, yeah, I don't know which which specific side you're talking about. Can a developer build on SmartRamp without being doxed? Unfortunately, you do have to create a wire account, which does require some documentation upload. A developer who has already built on SmartRamps and one of their users, like for example, a user of Skyweaver, will be able to come to wire, the wire integration at Skyweaver, be able to input just a mild amount of e-commerce information, name, billing address, email address, phone number, etc. And then be able to actually, you know, submit a transaction with a credit or a debit card. And that doesn't require any photo ID or anything like that as well.

Nicholas: Cool. Can you use like one-time use credit cards for this application?

Jamal: It depends on the card and the issuer of the card. Prepaid gift cards, unfortunately, are very difficult to use in this setting. So it depends. That's a complicated answer for probably a whole nother conversation.

Nicholas: Got you. And I'm curious, Craig, if you could talk a little bit about what it's like to build something like SmartRamp. It sounds like an interesting, challenging process. I'm curious if there are any challenges you came across or lessons you learned building it. that would be interesting to share.

Craig L: Yeah, it was definitely a complicated process. Thankfully, we had a lot of very talented people on board and especially with Peter and his team offering us a lot of feedback on kind of the initial architecture. But I think the main challenge of building SmartRamp was building it in a very composable way. So allowing it to support as many use cases as possible. So that involves like supporting SmartRamps on all the chains that Wire supports. That involves like being able to string together any sequence of transactions to support the execution of these on-chain calls to obtain any sort of output. So I would say that was probably the main challenge, just like architecting it in a way in which it would be composable across all these different use cases. And then separately, I would say another challenge was just how to price SmartRamp transactions. So understanding what the aggregate cost of gas is and then also understanding the pricing of the inputs token that goes into the on-chain calls to obtain the output. I think, yeah, just figuring out how to do that cost calculation and surfacing it to the user was another challenge that we encountered.

Nicholas: Yeah, that's interesting. I guess you don't let the user choose the gas price or anything. That's abstracted away, I presume.

Craig L: Yeah. So that's abstracted away. Currently, how it's built is we set like a certain gas limit for each on-chain transaction. And we'll dynamically adjust that as we kind of fine tune these different smart scripts. What we do is we take the gas limit for each transaction. We aggregate all the gas limits together. We multiply it by the gas price and then use our exchange mechanism to determine the exchange rate for that native gas token. And then using that, we calculate the gas price.

Nicholas: Awesome. I'm curious, can you reveal how many people are interacting with wire every day? I know it's integrated in Metamask and Rainbow on iOS. Do you guys talk about the number of people who are using the platform every day?

Craig L: I think Jamal might have some metrics around that. I'm not sure to what extent you can reveal those. But Jamal, if you want to speak to that.

Jamal: It's tough to speak to. I can just tell you, you know, it's in the millions where people are coming in. We have millions of users that come through our partners and they do interact with our APIs regularly. There's like a significant amount of people that interact with our crypto stack as well. We have a lot of interoperability between crypto assets and fiat. So people come in, bring their own crypto across multiple different accounts. It's hard to quantify those users as well. But yeah, it's in the millions.

Nicholas: Interesting. And that's both for on-ramp and off-ramp, I suppose.

Jamal: Yeah, I mean, that's across the whole stack. So it's interacting with our wallets. We have the ability to spin up custodial wallets for users. So you could be an integrated partner, spin up a custodial wallet for your users. And those wallets can custody a variety of assets and interact with a variety of users across those assets. That also includes on and off ramps across our different payment types, including Card, Bank Network, Apple Pay, etc.

Nicholas: Do people on-ramp directly to L2? very much?

Jamal: We have support for a number of L2s. Whether or not you consider Polygon an L2, that's another debate. But we have support for Polygon. We also have support for Palm, which is another layer 2 that we've supported. And then Loopering as well. It's in our roadmap to add support for several others, probably, hopefully by the end of the year. So yes, definitely. You can integrate assets directly to the L2.

Nicholas: Very cool. I see there's a bunch of cool people in the audience. Stevie G, Sirsu from Blackhand. If anybody wants to come up and ask a question, please feel free to request and I'll bring you up. I'd be very curious to hear Sirsu. I feel like there's even an opportunity around gaming assets like crypto transactions for buying like merch related to, in the case of Blackhand, like a gaming DAO. I think there's other reasons why maybe you have like a following that is not so crypto initiated, but who might want to interact and sort of get their get a little bit of exposure into crypto culture. I'm curious how to learn more about how Skyweaver is being adopted. And if people are playing, it's kind of oriented a little bit like Hearthstone, like a game that you could play on Twitch, right, Peter?

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah, it's a trading card game, kind of like Hearthstone, Magic, Pokemon, you know, turn-based strategy game. And yeah, we do have a lot of Twitch streamers. You know, I mean, anyone can stream any game on Twitch. So, yeah, we're really fortunate that we have a lot of organic streamers.

Nicholas: It is basically you compete against somebody. Do you play against the computer primarily or against other players?

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah, it's a good question. It's a 1v1 game. So it's a multiplayer video game. You typically only play each other, but you can play a robot for practice. But the majority of the game, you know, where the reward system is all designed around is multiplayer play. Think of it like a very fantasy-like chess game. There's a lot of thinking, a lot of strategy and anticipation and planning for your next move. But it's also very action-packed because, you know, there's a lot of fun things that come through and combos and, you know, you're setting up these different combos to kind of, you know, beat down the hero. That's what it's all about.

Nicholas: As I understand it, very much not in this play to earn world. It's like a play to have fun orientation. Is that right?

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah, we like to think of it as like play to own because, you know, I think we don't really want, you know, we're not trying to attract an audience of players who are just coming and playing a video game just for the sake of, you know, a simulation so that they can try to, you know, yield some kind of a return. That's not the point of it. It's this is a, you know, a video game that is really fun and really novel. There's a lot of really cool things in it. And of course, you can compete and you can you can win items, of course, through the leaderboard and through the tournaments. And you can sell those on the secondary market. So, yeah, you could, you know, of course, decide to, you know, decide to sell them off to other players. So, you know, which which do have value. But it's it is a very skill based game. So it's not like you have to be quite a top ranking player. And I think, you know, where Skyweaver is kind of heading is is, you know, in the direction of kind of this like pretty wide e-sport. So, you know, you can watch players, you can sponsor players, you can, you know, buy different card packs and, you know, or like card backs, that is. But, you know, I think what's cool about it is like typically in like the world of e-sports, you know, to be really competitive, you know, beat the world top percentile of people. But then you typically get sponsored by a team or something. And that's how you're, you know, or, you know, being a part of a team to then go win a tournament prize pool. In the case of Skyweaver, you know, these things are they're very they're actively running and they're asynchronous and they're kind of self selecting. So, you know, just anybody can come in and be the best Skyweaver player. And, you know, and own and get to get to win to own these cards. And, you know, there's a lot more interesting things we're doing around. We're planning for tournaments and there are a lot of community run tournaments that happen all the time. But we're going to make those a lot more active. You know, we're doing a partnership with CommunityGaming.io. They're an awesome partner. They have a lot of experience around that stuff. So, you know, we'd love to be in a situation where we've been doing daily tournaments.

Nicholas: Yeah, I have a little bit of exposure to like Magic Arena and understand the Magic TCG, the paper game a little a little bit. So it's it's interesting to hear about the development. I know in that community, you know, back in the 90s and 2000s, the competitive play sort of carried it through a dark period of its history. So I know that the sort of daily competitions and other other forms of competitive play can really create the. the feeling like there's something that you can get better at and ultimately be like one of the best players in the world is very motivating to players. So I'm sure that's that's going to be important over time.

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah. If you know MTGA, then yeah, you're you're you totally get it. I mean, I would say Skyward plays very much like in between Hearthstone and Magic.

Nicholas: I haven't actually played that much Hearthstone, but I guess it's like a little less sophisticated or something or I don't really know what the difference is in the mechanics.

Peter Kieltyka: Yeah. The main thing of like Hearthstone, it's right. It's a lot more casual format of a turn, you know, TCG based game. And, you know, one of the things is they don't have land cards. So that's kind of like the big thing we've we've kind of borrowed from Hearthstone is like we don't have land cards because, you know, that can make a game like you could easily get mana screwed and not get the right land cards. They can slow down the game. And so the idea is each time you start your turn, your mana pool, your reserves increases by one and you always have that much to spend. So you always have both players always have a consistent amount of mana that they can use, of course, which is what puts cards into play. So it just makes the game a bit more consistent and faster as well. Yeah. And then from that, you know, of course, on the Magic side, we borrowed a lot of ideas around, you know, you know, enchantments and, you know, things like that as you can kind of layer cards on top of each other. And of course, there's a lot of fresh ideas that are that our team has put into as well to, you know, make it very unique as well, because, you know, Magic really started as a tabletop game and it's pretty consistently staying in that format. But, you know, in the digital world, there's a lot of other things that you can do and how these things interact. So I would, you know, I would say that, you know, Skyweaver is way more as a way deeper depth around mastery of skill compared to Hearthstone has way less RNG, has way more combos, way more layers to the game. So, like I said, it serves very, very well in the esports world.

Nicholas: Cool. I'm going to have to give it a try. Well, we're coming up on the hour. Thank you so much, Craig, Jamal, Peter. This has been a really interesting conversation and I'm excited to try using the API. Take a look and see if there's applications where it'd be cool to get. I'm thinking about NFT. NYC is coming up and it might be interesting to to let people interact with blockchain without having to, I don't know, send their driver's license to somebody, something like that.

Peter Kieltyka: Exactly.

Nicholas: All right. Thank you all for coming through and thanks for everybody for listening to this episode. See you next Friday.

Jamal: Thanks for having us. Appreciate the time.

Craig L: Thanks for having us.

Nicholas: All right. See you around. Oh, and for habitual listeners, I should let you know that next week I'm shifting to a summer schedule. So instead of 5 p.m. Eastern, it's going to be 10 a.m. Eastern time. That's UTC minus four on Friday. So see you a week from today in the morning. Hey, thanks for listening to this episode of Web3 Galaxy Brain. To keep up with everything Web3, follow me on Twitter at Nicholas with four leading ends. You can find links to the topics discussed on today's episode in the show notes. Podcast feed links are available at Web3GalaxyBrain.com. Web3 Galaxy Brain airs live most Friday afternoons at 5 p.m. Eastern time, 2200 UTC on Twitter spaces. I look forward to seeing you there.

Show less

Related episodes

Podcast Thumbnail

Decent with CTO Will Kantaros

25 July 2023
Podcast Thumbnail

Derek Chiang, CEO of ZeroDev

7 December 2023
Podcast Thumbnail

Reservoir with Peter Watts

11 July 2023
Fast Fiat Onramps with Wyre and Horizon Games