Starting in 2017, Enjin Coin is one of the earliest names in the blockchain gaming ring. When we started Token Gamer in 2018, damn-near everything we covered was utilizing Enjin in one way or another. When Enjin created the pioneering ERC-1155 token standard, they helped usher in the rise of the NFT. However, as Bob once said, “the times they are a changin’.”
When Enjin started out, the NFT industry had a market cap in the region of $30 million. Four years later, it has a cap of around $22 billion. The growth has been so wild and sudden (in contrast to normal industries) that much of the infrastructure couldn’t keep up. While Ethereum is the home of some of the most famous NFTs, the network’s maximum transactions, speed, and gas fees have become crippling and untenable.
These limitations put Enjin in a precarious position: stay at the mercy of Ethereum and wait for 2.0, or create a solution. Enter, Efinity.
What Is Efinity?
Blockchain technology can be convoluted and enigmatic, making it tricky to explain concisely and clearly. This is a problem I run into most weeks and so I will try to demystify Efinity here as succinctly as possible.
Efinity is a blockchain in its own right, built on the Polkadot network. Polkadot is a blockchain platform that can operate two types of blockchain: relay chains and parachains.
A relay chain is a central chain for Polkadot and while it has limited functionality and it can’t execute smart contracts, for example (by design), it runs security and connects Polkadot’s parachains. It is Polkadot’s heart.
A parachain is its own blockchain that simply uses the relay chain’s resources to confirm transactions. Efinity is a parachain. Efinity, therefore, operates as a sovereign blockchain with its own tokenomics, data, and state.
To become a parachain on Polkadot is far from easy. For a permanent slot, you need to be “Common Good” which is essentially bridges or other utility chains for the betterment of the network, or win an auction. To win a parachain auction you must yourself bid $DOT and rally your community to do the same, which is what Efinity has done.
(An interesting aside: As Enjin did with Ethereum by creating the ERC-1155 token standard, they are developing a new token standard for Polkadot too, called Paratokens. There will also be a bridge from Ethereum to Efinity and vice versa, but that’s a little too deep for here, read this section of Efinity’s whitepaper instead.)
Why Is This Important for Enjin?
As discussed, Enjin’s foundations are in Ethereum and thus, Ethereum’s flaws are Enjin’s too. Those gas fees, transaction speeds, and the low transaction ceiling mean that for Enjin to keep up with the blockchain gaming space, they needed to evolve. Efinity is exactly that: it’s Enjin evolving. Efinity will have a much lower transaction fee (2.5%) or free if you utilize JumpNet, and the Efinity alpha was “processing 120 million tokens in one transaction, with batches of 12,000 transactions.”
I tipped my cap at Enjin in our Token Gamer Blockchain Gaming Awards 2021 because although they don’t have the player numbers of rival chains, they have the excellent Enjin Adopter Program, a $100m metaverse fund, and the best blockchain SDK for Unity currently.
However, what they need is successful blockchain games and that’s difficult when every transaction — and blockchain games are extremely heavy on transactions — costs from $10 to $400 in gas fees. That’s before we look at network performance. Efinity is Enjin’s opportunity to not only support blockchain game development and the emerging industry, but to have projects in and around the top of DappRadar’s charts.