Atari Sells Rights to Make Blockchain Versions of Mobile Games

Nuno Teodoro

Yesterday (Dec 18), it was announced a license agreement between Atari Inc. and Animoca Brands Limited. The agreement grants Animoca Brands the rights to create blockchain-based versions of popular mobile game titles RollerCoaster Tycoon and Goon Squad.

The agreement is valid until April 2022 and allows the publishing of the games globally, with the exception of Greater China (Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, and Macau).  

The companies also developed a strategic partnership that will look to explore mutual opportunities in blockchain, gaming, and product development. Frédéric Chesnais, the CEO of the Atari Group said:

“We are proud and delighted to enter into this long-term and strategic relationship with Animoca Brands, which also allows us to become a shareholder in one of the most exciting innovators in the world of decentralized gaming. We hope that this agreement paves the way to further cooperation on other Atari products.”

The commercial agreement will require Animoca Brands to pay Atari in shares of the company. Below are the commercial details of the agreement:

“As consideration for the license to develop and publish the Games, Animoca Brands will pay to Atari a minimum guarantee against future revenues of US$250,000, payable in shares of the Company’s stock at a price per share of A$0.11 (amounting to 3,125,000 ordinary AB1 shares); this fee is recoupable against revenue generated by the Games. A revenue share will be payable to Atari after gross revenues generated by the Games exceed a total of US$500,000.”

Atari has been present in almost the entirety of video game history. The company is known for releasing one of the first ever consoles - Atari's Home Pong console - and for creating many well known gaming franchises, such as Tetris, Pac Man, and Space Invaders. Having such a well established gaming company adopt blockchain technology is a great milestone in both the crypto and gaming industry.

RollerCoaster Tycoon and Goon Squad

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Atari is lending the license of a franchise that has been around since 1999, RollerCoaster Tycoon. The mobile version of the popular theme park management simulation game counts with over 19 million downloads. Yat Siu, co-founder and chairman of Animoca Brands, was very pleased with the commercial agreement:

“The RollerCoaster Tycoon franchise is, like many of Atari’s properties, a true evergreen, having been around for two decades. Given the strategic and commercial elements of this incredibly fun simulation, it is a perfect candidate for blockchain adaptation.”

Also included in the deal is Goon Squad, a multiplayer card-based strategy game launched in 2017.

Animoca Brands expects to publish both games by the second half of 2019. The new titles will integrate blockchain technology and non-fungible tokens (NFTs). This will ensure that items are unique and cannot be copied, while guaranteeing  a virtual economy that is transparent and decentralized.

Young Australian Woman Accused of Stealing 100,000 XRP Pleads Guilty

Siamak Masnavi

Katherine Nguyen, the first Australian charged with cryptocurrency theft, has pleaded guilty.

Background

On 25 October 2018, according to a report in media outlet "news.com.ua", police in the state of New South Wales in Australia arrested a 23-year-old woman from Sydney over the alleged theft of 100,000 XRP tokens.

Apparently, detectives from the State Crime Command’s Cybercrime Squad had set up a task force back in January 2018 to investigate the reported theft of 100,000 XRP tokens from a 56-year-old man. The investigators were told by the alleged victim that he was locked out of his email account for two days in mid-January 2018, but he thinks that his email account may have gotten hacked in December 2017.

After he managed to eventually get back control of his email account, he noticed some suspicious activity involving his cryptocurrency account, and when he checked this wallet, he found that almost all of the crypto there had disappeared.

However, after an approximately ten-month investigation, on 25 October 2018, detectives used a search warrant to get access to the young woman's home, arrested her, and took her to Ryde (a suburb of Sydney) Police station, where they charged her with "knowingly deal with proceeds of crime." 

The police were alleging that the woman (possibility with the help of others) took over the man's email account, changed his password, thereby locking him account, and then set up two factor authentication using a mobile phone number. It is further alleged that she then accessed his crypto account, and transferred his XRP tokens to a crypto exchange in China, where this XRP was converted to Bitcoin.

Latest Development

On Friday (August 23), Australian TV news channel 7NEWS sent out the following tweet:

According to their report, in January 2018, Nguyen, the alleged cryptocurrency thief, "hijacked" the email account of a 56-year old man with the same surname as her. 

The report goes on to say that although Nguyen has pleaded guilty, there is "still some dispute over the exact facts," which will hopefully be "settled at a special hearing in October" (this hearing has been given the task of preparing "a pre-sentence report").

When she is sentenced in October, there is a real possibility that she will have to go to jail.

Featured Image Credit: Photo via Pixabay.com