ZKasino — Decentralized Betting Platform on StarkNet

“What is wrong with the existing online casinos?”

Well, quite a lot.

In this article we will explore the numerous ways in which players get screwed by greedy casino hosts; how ZKasino is aiming to combat, create a fairer and safer platform for players whilst keeping all variables in their control.

Let’s take an unfiltered perspective on the concept of gambling. Gambling is a highly destructive business sector that preys on vulnerabilities of addictive personalities and ‘get-rich-quick’ mentality. It breaks apart families/relationships, triggers addiction, gets people in extreme levels of debt and contributes a huge factor to a number of suicides globally, all while the casino owners are raking in immense profit.

In an ideal world, people wouldn’t participate in -EV gambling because of all the negative consequences that arise from it. Instead, what we can create, is a safer and more fair environment for gamblers where they are not getting screwed from every angle. Ethically you can compare it to the drug industry, people will consume illegal drugs no matter the laws; the war on drugs has clearly failed. To acquire them, one must get in contact with shady individuals who dictate their own prices (since there is no regulated market) and sell you a product that could be mixed with a cheaper dangerous substance in order for them to increase their profit margins.

Online casinos have the potential to rig the odds (you are bluepilled if you don’t think this happens already, no matter how reputable a casino is). Players are entering bets with probabilities of winning that are lower than publicly displayed; this is reality.

Next step, if you manage to get extremely lucky by beating the unfair odds and make a profit from the casino, the next barrier that many people face is withdrawing your winnings. Ask someone who you know gambles if they have had any trouble withdrawing from a casino, and you’d be surpristed to hear that the majority of people know of a horror story where the casino quotes some bullshit from their TOS and disallowed them to withdraw, effectively banning their account.
Their money got stolen. This is also reality, it happens on the most reputable online casinos with no exceptions.

Why do casinos do this? It’s simple. Their business is solely to take (steal) money from their users, which is why they spend so aggressively on marketing. From missing deposits, to unfair odds, to KYC/TOS issues when attempting to withdraw, to account deactivation, the chance of actually profiting is EXTREMELY low due to all these barriers.

“How can we do better?”

If the potential to rig a game is there, human beings will take advantage of it. “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely”. Casino hosts should not have the power to create a button that guarantees an individual lose the next few bets.

To overcome this, ZKasino’s games (including winning probabilities) will be hard-coded through the immutable law of smart contracts. Anyone can review these contracts and ensure that the edge that ZKasino earns for the token holders and the DAO is slim, but still +EV versus players.

Second, there should not be one centralized entity who is ‘in charge’ of ZKasino. The ZKasino DAO will make all decisions such as which games to add, what percentage the edge should be, how marketing funds will be allocated and many more crucial decisions that will come up in the future. 1 zKAS token = 1 vote.

By sharing 70% of revenue generated from the platform amongst token holders and 30% separately to keep as DAO treasury, token holders will be incentivised to create better proposals for the longevity and success of ZKasino. Not only will it provide value to the native ZKasino token as a revenue source, but it will give holders an immediate vested interest to improve and sustain the platform.

ZKasino’s primary goal will not be to focus on generating revenue; we will keep the edge at a maximum of 1% (not set in stone, perhaps less). What we would rather create is a community-oriented casino where anyone can be a shareholder and extract market share from the current soul-sucking casinos. If our casino has lower edge, higher bankroll and full transparency in every aspect compared to existing casinos, it makes sense that our user base will grow exponentially. When we accomplish this, only then we can consider ZKasino a success.

The reason why many crypto casinos are operating on a centralized system is due to scalability issues. To give players an optimal platform to gamble on, it had to be created in a Web 2.0 manner. Due to the advancement of Layer-2 solutions, this is no longer an obstacle. Hosting ZKasino on StarkNet will allow players to have a similar experience (better even in our opinion) on a decentralized platform than an online casino that is centralized.

This notion of a decentralized casino has been tried and tested many times before, having failed over and over. Edgeless, EthBet and EosBet (now EarnBet) I remember off the top of my head; none of them ended up gaining any significant market share. The time of their launch was too early, crypto in 2017 was highly speculative and users weren’t interested in working applications; anything that grew in price = success. Crypto has advanced far since then, where people want working projects with real use cases now. Another reason why they did not succeed was due to the limitations in blockchain tech; being limited to mainnet Ethereum or EOS was not practical. Layer 2 solutions (especially one as advanced as StarkNet) were not released at the time.

For now, the brand name ZKasino will target crypto natives who are interested in joining the DAO and become shareholders in this venture. Ultimately, the goal will be to make it accessible and marketed to the average Joe, during which, a rebrand will most likely be needed.

Apologies for the long wall of text, for the ones who had patience to read through it all will hopefully join us on our journey.

Any questions, feel free to join our Discord and have a chat. This article has laid out our mission and we will stop at nothing to accomplish it. We are hiring aggressively, so if you think you have the skills to help us, reach out to our team.

https://discord.gg/PEdaCBqA
https://twitter.com/ZKasino_io
https://zkasino.io

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ZKasino

Decentralised betting platform built for Layer-2 ZK Rollups.