CROWDFUND THE NEXUS
WHAT ARE WE BUILDING?
CONVERGENCE (Convergence of 4 Dimensions LLC) will create the first comprehensive Cross-Reality Virtual Universe (XR-VU) combining the consumer game market with the arcade and out-of-home entertainment market. Enjoy different ways of interacting with your friends from your one account that spans across Smartphones, Tablets, Consoles, PCs, Arcades, LBEs and the ultimate in Theme Park Attractions; all with Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality and Standard Screen Interfaces intertwined into one virtual universe, where each planet is a completely different game/experience.
Goals: World domination! By using our networking savvy and bleeding-edge entertainment experience, we will lure all of humanity into our web of happy, joyful, gaming goodness. Without even realizing it, the masses will fall under our spell, losing themselves forever within Silica neXus. Of course we do have a fallback plan… simply building the largest entertainment project ever conceived, creating a cult-like following through social engagement tools from Managed Crowd-Sourcing and Crowd-Funding efforts.
Innovation: First use of Contextual Based Interfaces allowing different device-dependent entertainment experiences from both personal devices and out-of-home attractions merged contextually into one virtual universe.
WHY ARE WE BUILDING THIS?
Because we love games, virtual environments and entertainment technology. It is time for Cross-Reality to be realized. Real innovation has stagnated since the 2004 debut of World of Warcraft. Major studios seem to be re-skinning old ideas; no one wants to take a chance on a truly innovative concept because they say: “It’s too BIG”, “It’s too expensive” and “It will never work”.
This is the team that can deliver authentic Cross-Reality experiences and create the technology, tools, protocols, game mechanics and procedures for other developers to create their own interactive Cross-Reality experiences. We believe that accomplishing that goal will change entertainment forever!
We are also tired of getting ripped off when we are trying to sell digital assets earned while playing our favorite games. We believe our players—all players—deserve safe, secure transactions with their virtual items when they want to trade or sell. Putting these transactions on the blockchain might not fully eliminate the rampant fraud happening, however, it will bring it much closer to extinction.
Indie Developer Platform:
To allow the universe to be as diverse as possible, have constant growth and innovation, Convergence will build the base CORE, and its competing factions as examples and to create a base set of tools, techniques, procedures and game mechanics. Silica neXus is designed to also be a stepping off point, a gateway and portal to endless different possible experiences only limited by the minds of the 3rd party developers wanting to create and publish Cross-Reality interactive experiences.
Platform for third party Game Developers to create Cross-Reality experiences. We are creating a coalition, banding together as a resource and support network to help each other flourish as an independent. Shared Risk, Maximized Reward.
How we intend to work with developers:
Already have a team? Great!
Want to join a team? Our matchmaking Developer Relation Manager (under development) can help you find the right fit.
What are contextual based interfaces?
Contextual Based Interfaces are interfaces to the Virtual Universe that take into “context” the type of device(s) the participant is using, combined with the type of display and other simulation equipment they want to engage the Virtual Universe with (i.e. VR, AR, standard screen displays, simulators, motion bases, tactile feedback suits, brainwave EEG sensors, etc…), we also have to take into account their environment (are they engaging from a consumer location – their home – or a Location Based Facility or Theme Park.)
These factors must be taken into consideration to develop the interface for interaction with others in the VU. Each Interface will bring with it a standard set of game mechanics, policies, procedures, and typical functions the interface can and/or should perform as a member of a larger group with a variety of interfaces. The possibilities are endless as people keep coming up with unique new VR, AR and Sim gear.
We intend to establish a core set of these variables and allow 3rd parties to develop their own as the VU evolves over time.
One way to look at the interfaces is on the power pyramid scale. The higher you get, the more powerful and costly is the interface. Silica neXus provides the low level backed layer linking the front end interface to the game engine. In this why we can allow developers to develop on with their tools of choice and use our protocols to link to the larger Virtual Universe.
The AR Interface: The base AR Interface will be the smart phone. The Silica neXus AR App will be like a multi-player geo-location experience for driving quests in the world around you. It will also be a means to quickly connect your account to out-of-home equipment. The AR interface will also allow for the use of devices such as the Hololens, and others once they are in mass circulation.
The VR home Interface: The base VR home interface will be based on a modern VR ready PC with an HMD and controllers, such as the HTC VIVE or Oculus Rift. It will allow for a variety of other consumer level devices to be added in the future. This is approximately a $3,000 per user set up based on today’s prices.
The VR Arcade Interface: The base VR arcade interface will be developed with specific partners as they come out with top quality arcade ready equipment. We have several we are working with today. This is approximately a $12,000 per user set up based on today’s prices.
The VR LBE Interface: The base VR LBE interface will be developed with specific partners as they come out with top quality arcade ready equipment. We have several we are working with today. This is approximately a $40,000 per user set up based on today’s prices.
The VR Theme Park Interface: The base VR Theme Park interface would be a full-blown simulator setup. We are currently partnered with MaxFlight Simulators here and are looking for other quality equipment. This is approximately a $150,000 per user set up based on today’s prices.
They are the only company in the world that produces a fully interactive simulator that can perform 360 degree motion over two axes. You can actually experience the G-forces as you take your own craft for a spin around the universe.
Because we’re an independent studio with big dreams for an amazing Cross-Reality Platform and Portal we understand that this project will require a substantial budget to realize its full potential. The CORE IP will take the bulk of this funding and we are planning to build this technology in stages. We are confident we can deliver the AR component of the Virtual Universe without any Crowdfunding support.
The most important feature of our technology will be cross-reality (XR). This will hinge on the CORE and will bring together multiple device interfaces into a single virtual universe. It will also provide the tools necessary for 3rd party devs to create their own levels and worlds.
Foundations for Virtual Universe Economy and Blockchain Ecosystem
While Bitcoin, Ethereum, Blockchain and smart contracts are relatively new to the technology world, Virtual Economies are not. Virtual Economies have been alive and well in video games for decades. Virtual Goods have harnessed real world value ever since someone flew across the country to meet another player in person to buy an epic sword in Ultima Online. This occurred because there was no way both sides could trust the other would perform their part of the transaction remotely and both sides of the transaction were irreversible with no recourse. The perceived value of the sword had that much draw to the player who wanted it, more than just the money, the prestige within the online community of owning it drove him to spend the extra time and money to fly across the country to ensure the transaction.Read more VU Economy
Since then, services such as PayPal have allowed for the transactions of digital goods to happen remotely. However, as transactions increased in value and frequency, fraud increased due to the extreme difficulty a 3rd party like Paypal has to prove compliance of the transaction. Yet peer-to-peer digital goods transactions between players are still estimated in the tens of billions of dollars per year. Digital communities policing themselves with Feedback and Reputation systems can be “gamed” as the bounties for being dishonest soar.
Convergence is working to solve this growing problem by basing its CORE virtual goods transactions on the blockchain. Users are still responsible for their personal passwords and encryption keys; however, the process for transferring virtual goods will be far more secure and simplified.
Nanites (Microscopic Nanobots) assemble to form coins so people can pick them up (ever tried to pick up a molecule?) They are also used to create the basic resource bots on the CORE planets of the Silica neXus. These basic resource bots are used in the collection and production of basic Consumable Resources (“Consumables”) such as Fuel and Alloy on the CORE planets. These Consumables will be used by the players throughout the CORE planets just like gas and steel are consumed in countries around the world.
Nanobots will be stored in users’ accounts, along with all of the other virtual goods they collect, until traded or put to use to create resource bots. Resource bots are installed on land parcels to acquire fundamental Crude or Ore for processing into Fuel or Alloy respectively. Fuel and Alloy can be used, stored or traded. Early Adopters through Convergence’s Crowdsource campaign can become first Resource Barons in the SXVU. As the number of users grows on the system, the scarcity of resources will create a natural supply / demand market. Very similar to the ecosystem of the World of Warcraft community.
As 3rd party developers create entirely different experiences on new planets, they may have their own internal ecosystems. However, these new ecosystems will always have the ability to be exchanged for virtual goods from the CORE planets through the SXVU marketplace at a conversion rate to be determined at that time by the community based on the demand and scarcity of the new 3rd party’s planets’ virtual goods.
The SXVU Economy has an experience level structure. The more abundant areas are in the more advanced territories as opposed to the beginner areas which are less abundant. Cities and towns are safer areas than the wild.
Parcels of land derive value based upon their strategic nature, proximity to nearest major city, resource content, and safety.
Fuel and Alloy derive value based upon their proximity to nearest major city, safety and local availability. More advanced territories further away from major cities make supply of resources harder to come by due to the safety involved in transport from refining areas.
Mining and drilling bots can be acquired; however, require ownership of the land upon which to operate. Refining bots can be acquired; however, they too require ownership of the land upon which to operate. Safety of mining, drilling, refining and transporting always play a factor in resource supply and demand.
The more users on the system the scarcer resources become, the more valuable they become. Early pioneers are able to acquire more resources easier than later arrivals.
The SXVU economy is also analogous to the World of Warcraft economy in many aspects. However, WOW is limited to the user base of the PC / MacOS platform, whereas the SXVU Economy will be accessible from a wider variety of platforms, including over 2 billion mobile users. Therefore, the SXVU Economy must be equipped to scale accordingly.
This is where you come in!
The scope of this project expands in the five major FUNDING STAGES below – so that no matter which funding level we attain, we’re sure to deliver a great Cross-Reality experience and platform for 3rd party developers to add to. Help us co-fund Silica neXus and let’s see how big this game can get!
STAGE 1 – Redemption Robot
The Redemption Robot is the first stage of Convergence’s “Player Acquisition Engine.” A kiosk in Family Entertainment Centers (FECs) to deliver rare Crypto Collectables (Blockchain Non-Fungible Tokens “NFTs”) to tens of millions of new players a month, and an online marketplace / auction site for players to trade them.
Think of the Silica neXus Social AR App like a multi-player Pokémon Go with a purpose to run quests and events in the real-world environment around your town, all tied to the Virtual Universe. This app will know the players next to you and allow for groups to interact cooperatively or as opposing forces.
STAGE 2 – S.A.R.A.
Think of the Silica neXus Social AR App (S.A.R.A.) like a multi-player Pokémon Go with a purpose to run quests and events in the real-world environment around your town, all tied to the Virtual Universe. This app will know the players next to you and allow for groups to interact cooperatively or as opposing forces.
STAGE 3 – Create Hard Wired XR Content
Convergence will work with our partners to make some of their content into the first truly Cross-Reality Content spanning mobile, Consoles, PC, and out-of-home-entertainment equipment. This will give us the knowledge and best practices to create the tool sets for others to create their own XR Content.
STAGE 4 – CORE
This stage we will take the lessons learned to create the tools for developers to create XR Content limited by their imagination.
This is a project for developers
We need 3D artists, modelers, riggers, animators, C++ programmers, Proficient Unity Developers, UnReal Developers and CryEngine Developers. Level Designers, Story Boarders, Evangelists ; if you have a team great, bring them, if you have skills but have not found a team, great, we will match you up to form a team to allow you to expand your skill set.
We are looking to build out many Cross-Reality experiences, manage thousands of developers, and that means we need you!
We’ve focused on really awesome reward levels that we know we can deliver. This focus will allow us to devote more of your funding towards making the best Silica neXus Platform possible!
We know there are fans that have been burned by other crowdfunding projects, and we’re really sorry you had to go through that. The Convergence team knows how to make quality games, we know how to finish them, and we have no intention of letting you down.
Game development is not without risk, though. We’re building an all-new codebase that allows for integration of assets, maps, play-styles, and XR capabilities, with lofty visual and gameplay goals. We know that really nailing the feel of Silica neXus will take time and iteration. We’ll need new team members, too, but we’ve proven that we have a pretty damn good track record for hiring talented, dedicated people who go the extra mile.
So, the standard game development caveats apply. Some new features may take longer to make than we thought. Some piece of gameplay may not be as fun as it sounded on paper and we’ll need to revise it several times until it works.
But that’s part of the fun of making games.Read more Challenges
Hit Driven Business
Entertainment is a hit-driven business. As in any hit-driven business, content is king and finding the right content, i.e. the Halo for your Xbox network or the Angry Birds for your mobile game network is a constant challenge for all companies in the game industry. Once a new platform finds that smash hit, the other content on that system experiences the network effect of all the new players flocking to the system. Tim Chang of the Mayfield Fund once said. “It’s about distribution power. If content is king, then distribution power is God Almighty.” SXVU is the distributor of XR experiences. SXVU project has several advantages to attack the finding infectious content challenge. Convergence team member Paul Baker has worked on or directed the teams that have created over 20 of the top selling AAA consumer titles in the world, he will leverage his skill set by transferring knowledge as well as guiding a very large 3rd Party Developer network to develop many SXVU experiences. This effort will be aided by the wealth of experience of Jay Moore, who guided the GarageGames developer network, and Kevin Bachus. As Microsoft’s first director of third-party relations for Xbox, Kevin secured support for Xbox from all major game publishers worldwide and created and managed the programs and processes that would ultimately lead to the strongest software line-up ever for the launch of a game console. The funds from a successful Crowdfunding Campaign will help to drive strong content creation for the SXVU.
3rd Party Management
The management of the 3rd party development teams will pose a large challenge to the success of the SXVU. Fortunately, Convergence team member Jay Moore helped to acquire and successfully manage 250,000 independent game developers while with GarageGames for the Tribes Engine. Likewise, Kevin Bachus’ experience creating the Xbox developer network will be a great asset to overcome this challenge. By leveraging the funds raised in the Crowdfunding Campaign and promoting team managers that demonstrate quality leadership skills from the developer network, Convergence has confidence we can succeed here.
In any major network project of this size, you will run into severe technological challenges. The Convergence team has navigated the launch of many of the major technological advances and associated challenges that threaten success for more than 25 years for the top companies with the largest user bases in the world. Experience teaches us that smart minds with proper resources at their disposal can meet the challenges head on when they arise. We have the fortitude to “do whatever it takes” to succeed. Convergence’s team leveraged by the combined mind share of a strong 3rd party network has the best chance of overcoming the inevitable unforeseen technological challenges the SXVU will create.
How do you compete with 50K new digital experiences a week? This is a challenge for every new title to come to market, and exceptionally so for Independent Game Studio Startups. Convergence partnered with TVA Media Group for this reason. Machine Zone proved with Game of War: Fire Age it can be done with a herculean marketing campaign driven by deep pockets. Jeffery Goddard was added as advisor because the company he founded has over 30 years of proven success. More than working with top clients such as Universal, Pepsi, MasterCard, Sony, and Toyota, TVA assisted Wargaming.net achieve over 140M players. The TVA partnership multiplies Convergence’s marketing dollars 8-fold. Convergence will use some of the Crowdfunding Campaign proceeds to start a positive upward spiral of reinvesting a portion of revenue into marketing, thus allowing us to compete in the entertainment space with the larger established companies.
Universal Economy Balancing
Just like every nation’s economy and how they combine to affect the world economy, virtual game economies can rise or fall based on a multitude of variables and user perceptions. Group psychology and mob mentality played a major role in the 1920’s stock market crash that began the great depression. Emmerson Galfo will hire a strong team of economists and social psychologists to ensure the SXVU universal economy is constantly strong and thriving.
Community Management / User Expectations
A large thriving engaged user community is the lifeblood of modern businesses, and exponentially so for entertainment networks. It’s critical that the users in our VU become engaged and entertained. As with the economy, both individual and group psychology play a major role. Convergence is fortunate to have Ron Meiners, who mastered the art with some of the largest entertainment online communities to date.
Content Quality Assurance
QA will be a Tom Roe concern with all aspects of the project. The SXVU should be synonymous with quality entertainment. QA is a challenge for every product and company. Convergence is not only concerned with its development, but the assets of the entire 3rd party developer network. At the end of the day it all reflects back on Convergence. In the above Silica neXus Development Array Cycle, QA is ingrained into the design, development and submission of all assets in the project. Paul Baker will design and oversee the process, but it will be executed by external professional QA companies with tight guidelines and high standards. No asset will be accepted until it meets those standards. Throughout the entire process, the developer network will act as an added layer of QA testing the system every step of the way.
Questions about this project? Email Us