Verses AMA w/ Chief Technology Officer Scot Anderson - October 23

Scot talks about engineering a blockchain game, crypto mining, the social challenges blockchain presents, and crypto denial.


1. <a href= "#1">What was your crypto background before you got here at Many Hands?</a>

2. <a href = "#2">What were you mining mostly?</a>

3. <a href = "#3">What is it about blockchain that you find interesting?</a>

4. <a href= "#4">What’s your favorite blockchain and why?</a>

5. <a href= "#5">Tell us a little bit about your gaming related work at Microsoft.</a>

6. <a href= "#6">What makes Verses special?</a>

7. <a href= "#7">How will games benefit from blockchain integration?</a>

8. <a href= "#8">What is an interesting or memorable moment you've had working on the Verses demo?</a>

9. <a href= "#9">What do you think the post-blockchain gaming world looks like?</a>‍

10. <a href= "#10">Is it harder to use blockchain instead of using a centralized database?</a>

11. <a href= "#11">You can find Billy’s music here.</a>‍

12. <a href= "12">What is it like to work with new and emerging technologies?</a>

13. <a href= "13">What games have you been enjoying lately?</a>

Andy Wilson  


Welcome to another Verses AMA. Today, we have someone I'm really excited to speak with. 

We have Scott Anderson, he is vice president and also our Chief Technology Officer, which means he is basically the master of all things technology. 

Considering that we're a blockchain company, there's a lot of interesting stuff going on back there that frankly, I do not fully understand. I've wanted to have Scott on for a long time. And I'm just really excited we finally have them. Scott, do you want to maybe just go ahead and say hello, and introduce yourself?

Scot Anderson  


My name is Scott Anderson. I am a Seattle native in the Pacific Northwest region. I've been in some form of technology pretty much my entire career. I am, as you say, controller of all things technology, which isn't wholly accurate, but generally speaking, the technology decisions and what's going on behind the scenes all flow through me. 

Andy Wilson  


We have questions submitted through the discord. Let’s start with your background because you've done some work in the crypto and blockchain space before joining Many Hands. 

<div id="1" class="anchor">What was your crypto background before you got here at Many Hands?</div>

Scot Anderson  


Like a lot of people in technology, my skill set carried over into mining pretty easily. So it was a pretty low barrier to get some GPU rigs up and running to make a little side profit. And I did very well. 

There was also a company founded, I was not the only principal. We explored a larger mining operation that didn't fully get off the ground, and then ultimately we didn't decide to pursue that. But I did a very extensive personal mining project. Then my wife happened to find an opportunity to buy hundreds of video cards. We pulled the trigger on that and we sold mining equipment, both GPUs and some other stuff through eBay sales for a while.  

I also like personal digital security type stuff. So I made my own code to develop Bitcoin addresses from scratch when I was trying to understand how the fundamentals of blockchain worked. 

I did some crypto trading through a few different exchanges at one point. I had some scripts behind the scenes to help me identify arbitrage opportunities and act on them quickly and stuff like that. Nothing at an industrial scale. No one made millions or anything like that, but it was a fun project.

Andy Wilson  


With all of these GPUs, did you end up selling them? Or were you using most of them? I'm just trying to visualize your setup. Like did you just have machines running all over your house or…

Scot Anderson  


Haha there were times when every corner of my house was like, at one point had some kind of a GPU rig in them. Basically every room that somebody wasn’t sleeping in had a rig of some sort. 

The ultimate goal at the time was to use my garage as proof of concept of getting an operation off the ground. We were finding out how many GPUs you could get on what kind of electricity and what your heat load was kind of stuff like that. 

I didn't come into it with the facilities experience. Ultimately, what ended up happening was the business venture didn't launch and we sold enough of the video cards to cover our costs, and then put the rest into service and used those to mine out of my garage for two years.

Andy Wilson  


<div id="2" class="anchor">What were you mining mostly?</div>

Scot Anderson  


They were Vega 64 era video cards. So it was either Mineiro things using the same mining underlying mining algorithm. 

Andy Wilson  


What an interesting, weird moment in time that was.

Scot Anderson  


It really was. I mean, man, I have a lot of feelings. Proof of Work gets a bad name, somewhat rightfully. But it's really interesting to me, when opportunities, not just crypto mining and stuff like that, but the kind of opportunities where things are distilled to their base. 

What proof of work and crypto mining does more than anything is say “This is the fundamental value of electricity, like this is what it should cost.” If the only thing you're doing is taking electricity and turning it into money, this is how much money it's making. So this is what it should cost, right? I really like the purity of that transaction. 

This is a little bit of a tangent, but as someone who is socially motivated and tends to hold liberal opinions, and really, kind of just wants to take care of everyone. I think it's interesting that society can say “Electricity needs to cost less so that people can live their lives.” And I think that helping, subsidizing it, is super interesting and useful. 

But society will really start to examine some of the ways that we're subsidizing commercial enterprises, and people get really mad at mining and say “Ah, we shouldn't allow people to do this.” But most industries have a social cost in some capacity. And by offering them cheap electricity, we're in some ways, subsidizing that. So again, I just find the purity of mining to be an interesting foil for some of the psychological and social questions that we ask about our relationship with industry.

Andy Wilson  


That’s a surprising answer. I find it interesting because I have an intellectual and abstract understanding of blockchain technology, even if I don't fully understand all the technical aspects. And so my question for you is. 

<div id="3" class="anchor">What is it about blockchain that you find interesting?</div>

Scot Anderson  


I mean, I think… Man, there's a lot of stuff to say. I don't consider myself, you know, a true believer. Being in the blockchain and trading space, I interact with a lot of people who are in the blockchain space. I think a lot of people have a deeper belief than I do about a variety of things, either the morality or about what's going to happen, and its success and stuff like that. 

I think it's a really interesting technology. I think it's interesting in its capacity as currency because from a Western perspective, you know as a contemporary person, almost every currency you interact with is in some capacity controlled by a government. And I think that having some kind of a fungible currency that isn't fundamentally controlled by the government is pretty interesting. And so I tend to find projects that look more like, no one is in control. A little bit of controlled chaos is more interesting than the projects where there's… I won't say centralized control, but more centralized control in some projects. And I tend to be less interested in those projects.

Andy Wilson  


I think I fall on the other end of the spectrum about this. Maybe it's because of my limited understanding. I don't really play judge and jury with the technology or its usefulness or value, as weird as that might sound. Because I approach it more from the standpoint that says “Let's just see what people try. A lot of people have a lot of ideas about how to use this technology. And I say we just let them run, and we'll see what sticks, right?” 

You know, we don't necessarily have to predict, although we will. And we can just kind of watch what happens and what works. And I think it's because of that I think I'm a little bit more attracted to centralized projects. And maybe it just makes more sense to like my brain, you know, to understand a specific group of people is trying to accomplish a specific thing. And you know, they're just using a new technology to do it. 

I'd like to kind of get back to the list of questions and ask, what is your favorite blockchain? Do you have one?  And also feel free to answer this to maybe talk about blockchains you like, and maybe include what you like about them. 

<div id="4" class="anchor">What’s your favorite blockchain and why?</div>

Scot Anderson  


In my role here at many hands, we have a relationship with Tezos. I find Tezos Interesting, I find the things that they're trying to do interesting. I mean, despite coming from a mining background, and I know, some of the people who choose Tezos might take umbrage with that and you know, that's okay, that is what it is. But I do find, you know, projects that are issuing that and going in their own direction and Proof of Stake specifically pretty interesting.  

When it comes to my favorite blockchain, I'm pretty conservative, and I would probably say Bitcoin. I think throughout the history of the Blockchain era that most of the gains have flowed to Bitcoin. And I don't think that's fully an accident. I think that a lot of the technologies, the underlying technologies themselves are a little bit fungible. Which is to say, I think a lot of the things that different blockchains are doing, if they did something awesome, or invented a new technology that was awesome. It’s easy for others to say “Oh, that's really cool. How would we do that on Bitcoin? Or how would we do that on Ethereum?” 

It's pretty hard to stake out a space and make it yours, because there's so much competition in the space, and it's pretty easy for people to see good ideas and put them into their next version. And so, at that point, it becomes a lot about mindshare, and you know, Bitcoin is the OG and so as the value flows, if people are voting with their dollars, they're flowing towards Bitcoin. I think being the original first mover has a lot of mindshare advantages. I know it seems boring, but I think Bitcoin is my favorite blockchain.

Andy Wilson  


I mean, that's a good answer. When people think of crypto they probably think Bitcoin right? And they think that for a reason.

Scot Anderson  


Yeah. And I’m not saying that, you know, investing in altcoins or that all altcoins are bad projects or worthless or anything like that. I think that there are a lot of interesting things I mean, I guess now that I've said all that about Bitcoin, the one space I'm pretty passionate about is personal digital security, privacy kind of stuff. So any coins that have some kind of privacy stuff I’m interested in as well.  They’re not the sexiest coins in the space and there is a lot of regulatory pressure from regulators in various municipalities against privacy coins, but I'm still pretty bullish on anything that is privacy adjacent like Z cash, Mineiro, and those kinds of coins.

Andy Wilson  


I will say, one thing Bitcoin has going for it that no other cryptocurrency has is the name. The name Bitcoin from a marketing perspective, is so good.

Scot Anderson  


It is good from a human brain kind of way because the name says what it is, it feels evocative. And it’s a name brand like Kleenex. Bitcoin is almost synonymous with crypto. 

When you're talking to your mom, she's like “How are those Bitcoin things?” And she doesn't mean Bitcoin specifically, she means all the coins, right? The Brand is the category which is as you say, from a marketing perspective, easy to work with, if nothing else.

Andy Wilson  


I kind of have a funny story about moms asking about “the Bitcoin.” A lot of my family lives in a  rural area. And a lot of them are older. One time I was visiting, and my aunt, who's in her 60s, asked me about getting into crypto. This was sort of at the height of all the madness, and I'd say like “Well, if you don't know anything about it, then maybe it's not such a good idea.” 

Then fast forward a month or so, I’m visiting again, and there was like a Dateline special or a 60 Minutes kind of thing that was about crypto. And they watched it on actual good old fashioned television. Then this time around my aunt said, “They said something like, I think it was called pulling out the rug.” And so I told her that this is why maybe it’s not such a good idea to jump in without knowing what you’re doing. 

Scot Anderson  


Yeah, for sure. Interestingly, in my family, I'm at the top when it comes to knowing things about blockchain and crypto. But my wife's mother likes to listen to the radio. And they talk about it so she ranks second when it comes to knowing about crypto and the blockchain space. She’s interested in it so she researches and buys some coins here and there. 

I'm pretty conservative with buying coins, some of my net worth is definitely in the crypto space, but it is a reasonable percentage. And it is almost exclusively invested in Bitcoin, some Ethereum, and you would recognize all the coins that I hold. 

But my mother-in-law will say “Well it wasn't that much, so I put a few $100 into this coin and that coin.” And all sorts of stuff I've never heard of, and I laugh and say “Okay, well, good luck.” haha. But she's going about it the right way. She's not investing anything she can't afford to lose but I do find it kind of interesting. She has a much bigger appetite for risk than I do.

Andy Wilson  


When I first started learning about the space, a lot of my buying was motivated not by anything financial. At one point I realized that if I wanted to start learning about this technology, I should probably just start buying some coins, sending some coins, and opening up some wallets. So I did what she did, I put in $100 bucks here and $100 bucks there. I saw it more of a learning opportunity than anything else.

Scot Anderson  


Yeah, I'm the same. I mean, when I was first getting into the mining space. I didn’t know what I was doing. Where do I go? What do I sign up for? And so I signed up for an exchange account and started buying coins and watching price movements. And that's how I got into some of the momentum trading and stuff that I was doing for a while. And the arbitrage opportunities were I just started buying and selling coins here and there. Nothing huge, but what I could afford at the time.  And then in 2018 there was the big run up. And so, everything made money, that's always a nice feeling. Until it didn't.

Andy Wilson  


So far we've mostly been talking about crypto and blockchain. And I'd like to pivot to some questions about gaming. I know you worked on some gaming projects at Microsoft. And I just kind of wanted to ask you about that. 

<div id="5" class="anchor">Tell us a little bit about your gaming related work at Microsoft.</div>

Scot Anderson  


Well, nothing that ever hit the market. So that's a disappointing answer. At the time, I worked on what was called the Surface, but they've rebranded so it's not the Surface that people think of when you say the word Surface. The original product called Surface was a table with cameras and a computer built in so that both the surface of the table was a display, and we could use cameras to identify touch points. We used things like infrared light bouncing and some hardware technology that I don't really understand fully but because I'm not an optical engineer. Oh, I guess I do want to say it became PixelSense is the brand that Microsoft uses for this technology now. 

But anyway, we could also identify objects and stuff. We’d get basically a grayscale image of what the surface of the table looked like, so if you roll the dice, if you roll like a six-sided dice, obviously, if you if we can see the six because it's pointing down, we know that the ones on top and, and stuff like that. But I joined the project when it was super pre-release. We didn't talk about it with anybody. I was allowed to tell my wife. And she wasn't allowed to tell anyone and I wasn't allowed to tell anyone else. So in the early days, we thought it was going to be like a home product. What was interesting was what if it’s a board game platform? How are you going to use it in your D&D games and stuff like that? And so in non-developer roles I worked on a Settlers of Catan port that never saw the light of day. All of my developer stuff was pretty indie and ad hoc. Microsoft had negotiated during those early days for a license, I think, with Rio Grande Games for their entire catalog, in case we wanted to ship something. So I worked on the Puerto Rico version of the board game to play on the PixelSense. 

I also worked with a friend of mine during that era and we had an idea for a large screen gaming, like kind of theater gaming stuff. A bunch of small one-screen theaters were struggling during that time. USB was pretty new at the time, and we wondered if we could just plug 40 USB gamepads into a computer and make a party game that 40 people could play in these theaters. So as a proof of concept did a version of RoboRally. Everybody was programming on the screen at the time. Our version I think had 10 or 12 players, but when 10 or 12 people are all doing stuff on the screen, like you can't pay attention to what other people are doing. So we did some timed rounds with everybody just on screen at the same time while you're programming your robot. It was pretty nice anyway, and I ported that to the surface and played around with that for a while. 

Andy Wilson  


What year was this? So I can make sense in my head of what was kind of the technology timeline?

Scot Anderson  


I think I left Microsoft in like 2009. So this would have been, somewhere around 2005 2006 2007.

Andy Wilson  


I want to move down the list of questions here and ask, what benefits can blockchain bring to Verses? Feel free to answer this about Verses but also gaming in general.

<div id="6" class="anchor">What benefits can blockchain bring to Verses and gaming?</div>

Scot Anderson  


I think that a lot of people are doing a lot of things in the space that are interesting. And I don't want to downplay that, like, I think there will be fundamental changes to the gaming hobby that come from blockchain eventually. But for Verses we're really looking to deliver player ownership of assets. A lot of our development team game development has a magic background. You know, I mean, magic is the elephant in the space, right? They did things that shaped the entire trading and collectible card space forever. So we really examined the relationship magic has with its players. And how much value the players bring to the magic ecosystem in roles that are more than just consumers. And that's, I guess, what we want from blockchain. We want to make an interesting game, we want to make it fun. The reason we choose blockchain isn't because we're like “We're gonna be blockchain gamers!” It's really because we don't see a way to capture the player ownership aspect. 

We really model ourselves off of physical trading card games. We want the players to be involved and invested. We want them to have their own collection, we want them to want to contribute back to the community. We have a variety of plans, but you know, no commitments, but we want to be open source. We look at the Magic Commander format, being a fan made format. That idea is like the pinnacle of our mountain. That's what we want from blockchain, we want people to have their own cards, own their own cards, be able to sell, buy, and, trade, their collection outside of our ecosystem. And also trust that we can't take away their cards. Basically kind of from beginning to end, they’ll have a full seat at the table in deciding what to do with the value that they've bought into the ecosystem. 

Sorry, I lost my train of thought and kind of trailed off there. But anyway, that's fundamentally what we're hoping for, that blockchain brings. If we were Hearthstone, but you could buy, sell and trade your own cards outside of our platform, that would be a win. That would be enough of a win for the space that I think is interesting. You know, obviously, we have more plans, the human brain will come up with 1000 ideas when you get people in a room and start talking. Like most software projects, our problem is figuring out how to cut features, not how to add them. But if we accomplished nothing more than a fun game where you own your own stuff, we'd be pretty excited.

Andy Wilson  


The next question is what makes Verses special specifically? Feel free to answer this from a gameplay perspective, or a technology perspective.

<div id="6" class="anchor">What makes Verses special?</div>

Scot Anderson  


I’d say asset ownership. I think most blockchain games are trying to accomplish that asset ownership. The open source ecosystem is trying to figure out how to empower users to create their own formats, to interact with our pieces, in ways that we didn't first see.

That is where we're spending some of our brain capital that is different from other people. You know, I think every project thinks that they're special, but I think what makes us special is in part that we were not trying to be a blockchain gamer just to be blockchain gamers. If we could be Hearthstone, or Clash Royale we'd be thrilled.

If we just brought some more player empowerment to the space that’d be a success. We're not doing the crypto thing because we're like “Crypto rah, rah, rah!” we're doing the crypto thing because it's the obvious solution to the problem that gaming has, which is, players don't have a role beyond being a consumer, right? 

Like we want to, we want to enable fandom. We want players to be excited and to say things like “Wouldn't this magic card be cool if I painted over it or reimagined it in a slightly different way?” We want to bring these same concepts of fandom to the digital space. We'd like to see people have custom cards, where we can support that kind of fandom from end to end. We want to bring players in and allow them to be more than just a consumer. That’s kind of the holy grail vision that I think makes Verses special and different from other projects.

Andy Wilson  


My next question is about the Verses demo. I know there's a lot of work being done on the demo. And one of the questions we received was.

<div id="8" class="anchor">What is an interesting or memorable moment you've had working on the Verses demo?</div>

Scot Anderson  


Man, that's, that's an interesting one. That's hard. People outside of the company don't fully know the story of our technology team. We were partnered with an external company that we were really happy with. But they were doing most of our heavy lifting as far as the development of the engine and stuff like that. They got bought out and ended up having different priorities. So we split up amicably. They'll probably still be involved in our project in some ways. But we brought all the technology in-house. So that was complicated and hard and interesting. 

I'm really excited about where we are with the internal team, like I think we're going in a good direction.  But like with most interesting stuff it's hard to decide what to talk about. But I guess I'm really excited about some of the directions that game design has taken us with the real-time elements like some Clash Royale kinds of stuff. 

And so much of my job today has been keeping me playing catch up with game design.

I think this is super normal, but they change how a card works, by changing a sentence and then there's three days worth of engineering work to make it work in the engine. But yeah, I just I guess I don't have a defining moment that is the most interesting.

But I'm really excited about the work that game design has been doing and, and being able to have the engineering team in house so that we can react real quickly and, be a little bit more agile. 

Andy Wilson  


I have a question… I understand what it means to be an engineer, in an abstract way.

I understand it in my head. I've been in Unity a little bit, that kind of thing. But how does incorporating the blockchain change that process? What’s it like trying to engineer a blockchain game specifically? Is that a difficult part of the technological puzzle? Just you know… What's that even like?

<div id="9" class="anchor">What’s it like to incorporate the blockchain into a game?</div>

Scot Anderson  


Blockchain is a suite of technologies, right? So, it depends on what you mean when you say “incorporate the blockchain.” There are a couple of different ways that you can do it, I guess.

I'll use NFTs as an example because I assume most of our listeners are familiar with NFTs.
So with Ethereum or most other chains there's like an external storage that stores like the art or whatever the thing is that you're going to essentially mint into an NFT. And then what gets minted on the chain is more like a certificate of ownership, that points to an extra external piece of storage and says  “I own that.” you get basically a certificate.

And then like some of the Bitcoin NFT projects have something that’s dramatically more expensive, and I'm not advocating this at all, but they have a system where they store the art on the chain explicitly, it's not like an external storage base. And so the thing that gets traded around, it's still, in theory, basically a certificate of ownership, because anybody can read the chain and see the bits that are the art, you know, on the chain, but it's on chain. There's nothing external that could break or go down, that could separate this, this digital asset that you've created. 

So when talking about making a game on chain, there's a variety of different technologies you can use. The chain can be a technology that you use for things like ownership, designation, trading, and stuff like that. Or you can have the code actually executing on the chain. And so I guess this is a long winded way of saying it depends on what you bite off. We're not sure where we're going to land right now as far as whether the code will be chain off. We've explored having the code executed on the chain in a future version. But at least right now the mechanics you can introduce into the game have to be pretty simple in order to support that, unless you're gonna spin off onto a layer two or your own lower layer, which you're going to do roll-ups on and stuff like that. 

So anyway, this is I'm getting off topic and long winded but fundamentally when you're creating a game on the chain, there's kind of a basket of things you could do which all make you a blockchain game in the eyes of regulators and lay people and your mom. But at least for us initially we want to accomplish something that brings players in and looks hopefully a lot like a traditional game, Clash Royale, Hearthstone, Marvel Snap, like any of these kind of games in the space with the blockchain providing kind of that ownership piece, which isn't super complicated.

Andy Wilson  


You know, one thing that's always been interesting to me is that with blockchain, the ownership and distribution part of the problem is already built for you, right? So in that sense, is it easier to incorporate blockchain because you know, that system is already there? Or would it be easier to just build your own centralized system from scratch?

<div id="10" class="anchor">Is it harder to use blockchain instead of using a centralized database?</div>

Scot Anderson  


It's definitely harder than just building it yourself. There are ownership things right? Like, say you have a game, you have a game breaking bug that causes some, you know, some cards to leave someone's collection or something like that, right? If you're Marvel Snap or Hearthstone you can say “Yeah, we totally have that bug. Let’s just do a database search, find everyone who had this bug and fix their collection. And it's our database, we own it, we just fix it.” 

If you're a blockchain company then you don't get to just fix it, because you don't own that underlying database. So how do we make it right? Does that look like minting new cards? How do you fix this? So there's a lot of questions that occur when you don't own a piece of your ecosystem, that you have to figure out not just a technological solution, but like, in some cases, a moral solution. Like how do we, you know, if something goes wrong, and something gets messed up? How do we make people whole, and when you own everything, you click a few buttons, and you make people whole, and when you don't own anything, it definitely is more complicated.

Andy Wilson  


I see, I see. We’re getting close to the end of this AMA. I want to ask some final questions to kind of wrap things up. Someone asked, what do you like and dislike about working on Verses. You can think of this maybe as a pros and cons kind of question.

<div id="11" class="anchor">What do you like and dislike about working on Verses?</div>

Scot Anderson  


The biggest thing I like about this job, and any job, for me at least, is the people I get to work with. You find very passionate people, very talented people in the space. And so fundamentally, you know, making human connections, I think, is one of humanity's top inventions. And so like that opportunity to work alongside people and see their talent and, and just form connections with people you otherwise wouldn't form connections with is always my top thing. 

The #1 worst thing is crypto dismissal. Like, you know, being in a social setting and saying “I'm working on this game and blah blah blah. Yeah, we're doing this thing with crypto.” 

I am a software developer living in Seattle, and so my social circle consists of tech adjacent people. Tech people who have very strong opinions about crypto who immediately say things like rug pull, and scams. And then I’m like “Oh, we're not, I'm not trying to sell you anything. I just want to talk to you people…” And they're not wrong to an extent right? And it’s hard to communicate that “Yeah, yeah, but we’re not doing that.”

Andy Wilson  


I know what you mean, you just want to say like… “I swear to God our game is a game, and not a speculative financial instrument. I swear to God, we're just making a game.”

Scot Anderson  


Yeah. I mean, it is hard, because you can't blame them. But on the flip side you're like “I thought we were having a nice conversation. And then you asked me what I do. And now you're walking away. Nothing that our company is doing is a scam or anything like that…” So yeah my top con is definitely the social cost of working on a crypto project.

Andy Wilson  


I have another question and we've been talking about this throughout this whole AMA. 

My question is, what is it like to work with new and emerging technologies? And I know we’ve been talking about this already but I wanted to give you the chance to answer this in a direct way.

<div id="12" class="anchor">What is it like to work with new and emerging technologies?</div>

Scot Anderson  


When I was working, like my first kind of “keep it secret” technology which was what became the PixelSense. That experience was like, just the height of awesome and the height of annoying at the same time. Not being able to share it with anybody is just hard. It's just hard to do, keeping secrets. That’s less of a challenge with this project. Obviously, you know, we're not talking publicly about some aspects of the project. But like, I talked to my mom about it, I talked to my friends about it, and stuff like that. So it’s not a big big secret like before. 

I really like working on new and interesting things. I really like working on something that makes me excited. And being excited about some aspect of the technology where it fundamentally feels like you're pushing the envelope. Even if it doesn't play out, pushing into doing something new, and trying to enable players in this way is something I’ve seen from a lot of other projects. 

It feels special when you come to work every morning, it feels like you're working on something interesting and special and different. And that's a great feeling.

Andy Wilson  


I mean, there are a lot of people who are really passionate about blockchain and would kill to work on it in a professional capacity.

Scot Anderson  


And it's funny that I wouldn't have been one of them. But here we are, that's how life works out sometimes. But I enjoy it, and I would have never thought that I’d be here. Because I have the same perception as a lot of those tech people I was talking about. Because the space has a lot of scams, it's, you know, not a safe space. You really have to watch yourself, as you said, like, you can't say to your family when they ask “So what should I do?” You can't say “Oh, yeah, get your feet wet. Just jump in and play around?” That's a scary answer. So I don't like those aspects. 

But then there’s the aspect that it's a new technology that is interesting and compelling. And the technology really does enable some new types of interactions beyond just scams. I think that space is here to stay, I think it's going to keep pushing, like I think even if it gets regulated, like I think that there's enough value in the underlying technology, that it's not going anywhere. So it's interesting for me to be able to play in this space and see where we end up.

Andy Wilson  


So I have one final question. And this question wasn’t on the list I gave you. But it’s the final question I like to ask all the AMA guests.

<div id="13" class="anchor">What games have you been enjoying lately?</div>

Scot Anderson  


Oh, man, that's an easy one, Return to Moria, which I didn't expect to be as good as I am finding it. I really went in with low expectations, which I think their price point clearly communicated. I don't know if you're familiar with it, but it was about 40 bucks, which isn't  the AAA brand new game price point. When you target your game at $40 Day one, I think you're setting expectations. And that's great, because I think if I had gone in expecting it to be, you know, a Baldurs Gate or Cyberpunk or you know, one of these AAA games then I would have been pretty disappointed. I have a small playgroup that does co-op, survival type games. We’ve played a lot of Seven Days to Die. Return to Moria has been just really punching above its weight. I generally have low expectations of large IP properties like Lord of the Rings, where they’re spending a bunch of money getting the IP and you don't have as much money to spend making the game good. And so they can very easily fall into cash grab territory. But yeah, no complaints, I feel like they delivered exactly what they promised, which is a $40 survival simulation style survival crafting game, in Moria… Being dwarves. I played a lot of Deep Rock Galactic for a hot minute, which is pretty good. This feels like the Lord of the Rings version of Deep Rock Galactic sometimes and it's good fun.

Andy Wilson  


That was the last question, you've won the AMA. I know you have a hard stop coming up very soon. So I do want to let you go and get to your meetings. Thank you. It was really fun having you on. I've been wanting to have you as a guest for quite a while now. It was just great to finally have you on. Thanks again, Scott.

Scot Anderson  


Yeah, I also enjoyed it. And I was happy to be here. Thank you.

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