If You Give a Player a Bitcoin

The main event that kickstarted my interest in bitcoin was joining a minecraft server called MinecraftCC in the beginning of 2013. If you don’t know what minecraft is, it’s a voxel-based game that involves acquiring blocks of different types, crafting them into other things, mining underground, and building. You can play single player on your local computer or you can join a server, which is a place where everyone plays together on one map and can communicate with one another. Minecraft is open to a lot of mods and therefore many interesting things can be done within the game. On this server in particular, you get paid bitcoin based on how many blocks you mined or placed. This is what got me on the server, but now I don’t know what to think about it anymore.

If You Give a Player a Bitcoin, He’ll Expect to get Paid Large Amounts

When I logged in to the forums a few weeks ago to see that the pay per block mined/placed dropped, honestly I was pretty sad. This is a nice source of income for me at a few bitcents per week, and before the recent pay rate drops I didn’t have to play more than my casual amount in order to hit a nice, high payout. The forum and in-game chats were filled with people complaining about the drop, how they’ll get half as much as normal, etc.

The thing they didn’t notice was that the reason they play should just be to play the game like everyone else; payout is just a bonus. It’s a one of a kind opportunity, and many people still complain about the rates cutting. It’s gotten to the point where each player gets fraction of 1mBTC unless he/she intentionally builds and mines for bitcoin, and I don’t see the payout rate increasing any time soon. However, it is a nice incentive that draws in a lot of people to the server, and probably is better advertising for the money than hiring a YouTuber or website to post and talk about the server on their pages.

The players still do mine and play for bitcoin, and they themselves are the reason the rates go down. When every player mines up a ton of blocks in order to hit the payout limit (currently down at 0.02BTC/week), it takes away from the amount of bitcoin that the owner has to spend, making him decrease the per-block-pay.

If You Give a Player a Bitcoin, He’ll Lose All Other Motivation to Play

There are few players on the server who still play the game like it’s intended. Instead, they spend all day quarrying and building large storage facilities to hold all of the blocks they mine in an effort to earn bitcoins in-game. Players lose all other motivation to do anything in game if it doesn’t yield profit, so a lot of in-game aspects are barely ever used. Many players never battle against each other, play mini-games, or try to survive because they’re too busy earning bitcoins, and it makes the game nothing more than a click-and-hold-left-mouse-button-and-walk-around game.

Many players mine until they hit the pay limit, don’t have anything else to do and don’t want to lose the potential bitcoin, then log out and come back the next week. Many players don’t even socialize in the in-game chat or work together with other players in favor of focusing on mining and earning. The main point of the multiplayer aspect is lost; everyone splits up and makes ugly holes in order to earn bitcoin.

If You Give a Player a Bitcoin, He’ll Forget all about Kindness

A trend that I’ve realized is that generosity has been lost. Instead of giving items and blocks to players when needed, they just ask to sell them the items for bitcoin. No one gives anything for free since they know everyone has precious bitcoins that can be traded, and the aspect of a community is lost.

Instead of working together on large projects and lending items, players will refuse to work on anything other than their own unless paid in bitcoin. Players aren’t willing to lend their time for real projects when they could be mining. However, the only people who don’t participate in this behavior are the non-bitcoiners who play to play. A majority of these people like to call out people for using bitcoin, saying it’s pointless or stupid or whatever else they want to attack with. The bitcoin earnings create a semi-toxic community because no one wants to work together when they aren’t getting paid. People become greedy very easily when any money is involved.

If You Give a Player a Bitcoin, He’ll Expect to get Paid Forever

Like I stated before, the per-block-payout is decreased every few months. The owner has stated that he will do this from the beginning, and it has been known to all. However, players still expect to be paid for their actions forever. If the payout is decreased, the players complain as if they are entitled to a certain wage while playing.

Although the bitcoin payouts have been good advertising for the server itself, once the server no longer pays out I guarantee that a large percentage of the current players will leave. Too many players who are already here only play for the bitcoin instead of the actual content provided by the server, and once the server stops spitting out money to its players, the only remaining motivation because of the bitcoin will be lost and a lot of players will quit.

If You Give a Player a Bitcoin, It will Change Everything

If there’s anything I learned about getting paid to do a recreational activity, it would be that it will usually transform the way you think about your hobby. Now that I’ve been paid to play, any server that doesn’t pay me seems lower quality. Once I stop getting paid on this current server, I won’t have interest in any server and I could possibly give up the game completely. If you give a player a bitcoin, you might regret it.


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