The early days of play-to-earn
Investing in games and launching them on the YGG platform
A Prime Brokerage model for NFTs?
YGGs original investment coming from IVC
Does GameFi accelerate DeFi
Preparing the next generation for the metaverse
The YGG SEA IDO and CopperLaunch
Moving from a governance token to a utility token
Irene and Evan’s trip to a Buddhist temple
The bonus conversation!
Can’t You Feel the Love?
Did You Collect Your Unicorn Milk?
The Guild Really Is Just Phase 01
Read the best-effort transcript below (This technology is still not as good as they say it is…):
Michael Waitze 0:00
Michael Waitze Media…telling Asia’s stories. Okay, we’re on Hi, this is Michael Waitze. And welcome back to the Asia Tech Podcast today should be a good one today we are joined by Evan Spytma, did I get that right, a co founder and the CEO of YGG SEA and Irene Umar, who for some reason wants to be on all my podcasts has come all the way from Indonesia, Indonesia to be you’re also a co founder and the Country Head of YGG SEA in Indonesia. Is that right? Thanks for coming. And thanks for doing this on really short notice. I really appreciate it. So we’ve had you on…
Irene Umar 0:38
You did you Did I can’t resist this charm, you cease to be here all the time.
Michael Waitze 0:42
Nobody believes that. By the way. Anybody who’s met me in person knows charm zero, Evan? Yes. It’s very nice to meet you as well. And I’m really glad to have you here. Can you give us a little bit of your background? For some context, since the listeners already know…
Evan Spytma 0:55
I want to know about more about Irene.
Michael Waitze 0:57
We’ll get to that in a second. Don’t worry.
Irene Umar 0:59
Oh dear. Two against one.
Evan Spytma 1:01
So I live here in Asia last 20 years, been doing business here mainly in video games, worked for a small Seattle startup at the time called PopCap Games. They made Bejeweled and plans for zombie, those kinds of really casual games.
Michael Waitze 1:21
But those are games that everybody knows about. Absolutely. So I go ahead. Yeah. And
Evan Spytma 1:25
so they were expanding into Asia. And they were looking for people to help with that expansion. So I I became their marketing director for APAC. During that time, I just was fascinated with Southeast Asia. Because mainly at that point, I had spent most of my time in China and Korea.
Michael Waitze 1:45
I mean, it makes a certain amount of sense. Right. Korea is is a hotbed for gaming as well, right? Yeah. And where else did you live in Asia?
Evan Spytma 1:54
Philippines, Singapore, Singapore for five years. Wow. Japan for a short time.
Michael Waitze 2:01
Really? Where did you live in Japan? Osaka… Why do you say like that?
Evan Spytma 2:07
It was great. But I actually moved there to spend some time with my brother. And he absolutely loved Japan spent nine years there.
Michael Waitze 2:17
What was he doing there?
Evan Spytma 2:18
Everything? Absolutely everything.
Irene Umar 2:22
Do you want to elaborate a little bit?
Evan Spytma 2:25
Well, he started his own company there. He went to university there.
Michael Waitze 2:30
So your brother went to university there. I went to university there as well. And I was in Kyoto and I went to school. And if he was in Osaka, I’m guessing he went to Kansai Gaidai.
Evan Spytma 2:39
Michael Waitze 2:40
So now, you know, you can’t make this stuff up. Yeah. Right. Did he go on an exchange program?
Evan Spytma 2:44
He did. He did.
Michael Waitze 2:45
So where was he going to undergrad? Eckerd College. Eckert got it. Okay. So you have to know this. So you can’t make it up. Right. Like you can’t fake it. That’s true.
Irene Umar 2:53
But I was just thinking, that’s why this morning, that girl was saying arigato to you. Because if you send off that Japanese vibe…
Michael Waitze 3:00
Maybe it’s seeped in from your brother. Okay, and where do you live now?
Evan Spytma 3:05
I live in Taiwan. And how long have you been living there? close to four years now.
Michael Waitze 3:09
Got it. Got it. And what are you doing? So you’re in Thailand, from Indonesia. You’re in Thailand now from Taiwan? What are you doing here now?
Irene Umar 3:18
Well, we’re here to be doing the podcast, right?
Evan Spytma 3:20
Yeah. We’ve all come here for…
Michael Waitze 3:23
You just you flew in. You came right into the seven peaks office just to be on the podcast?
Irene Umar 3:28
Indeed. That’s the charm that we were talking about.
Michael Waitze 3:30
There’s nothing I can do. Nothing I can do about it. You’re the co founder and CEO of y gsca. Maybe you can give us a little bit background on what’s going on at YG gsca. Wide was founded right it originally founded in the Philippines. So we’ve had Gabby, and Beryl on the show. Yes. As well as my fight. I’ve spoken a barrel twice because I had her on my FinTech podcast a year ago now, probably, if that makes sense. And then I had them on together on the main chain. Yeah, go ahead.
Evan Spytma 3:58
Yeah, so I have known Gabby for quite some time back when I was with PopCap. And then later Electronic Arts, we would always go to the same conventions together. And then when I was with Unity Technologies, he was also using Unity game engines. So he was a partner of ours. And then after that, I had called him up, and we were just over dinner. He had told me, You’re with unity. Right now I’m working on something. I’m not going to tell you what it is. Because unity is going to steal it. And then they’re going to just go mass, you know, mass market with it. And so I’m not gonna say anything, but I’m working on something. Maybe this was maybe six months later, I had heard about his success.
Michael Waitze 4:46
And what that’s the YG success. Why’d you do so when you say you hear about the size success? Was this the capital raise from Andreessen Horowitz or just the fact that the game was growing really fast via what the Axia infinity stuff it was,
Evan Spytma 4:57
it was more about the the A whole genre the play to earn space was taking off. And so I said, I catch me up on this.
Michael Waitze 5:06
Yeah. But this is interesting, right? Because and we’ve talked about this before. You’re a banker by training is probably not the right word. And I love this story. I love when we were doing the last recording. I was like, why? And you’re like, Well, my parents don’t want me to be in gaming. Yeah,
Irene Umar 5:19
of course. I’m in which parents right with their kids to be in gaming? Well, except for Evan. I would you be okay. If your kids are in gaming?
Evan Spytma 5:29
I would be actively No, train them on on crypto unicorns. I love it. How old are your kids? six and nine. Okay, so
Michael Waitze 5:37
they’re real kids and like one in three. But here’s the thing though, about gaming, you can say whatever you want about it, right? It’s very different than it was first of all 30 years ago, right? Like when Space Invaders came out was a little bit mindless, not that challenging. But you even knew back then, right? When Atari started developing these games and tell me where I’m wrong. Yeah, and it’s no, but at its core at its core, though, right? It’s computer programming. And if you’re a really great programmer, you should be a great gamer. Is that fair? Right? Yep. And actually, if you’re a great musician, you should be a great gamer. Think about it, because what is what is music? It’s man. It’s math,
Irene Umar 6:23
maths, creativity. coordinations that? What do you say just know early about Space Invaders? Right? Those games might be mindless, but it actually mindlessly coordinating. You train your coordinations to those games.
Michael Waitze 6:38
This is the reason why I bring it up, though, right? So Space Invaders actually got harder as you went along. Right? So at the beginning, it’s just like, in the rows go back and forth. But the longer you do it, the more complicated it gets. Right, Pac Man, same thing. You have to really think to do this, I think this is the thing. And remember, every generation has this, right? Don’t sit and listen to the radio in the 20s and 30s. What are you doing watching television like in the 60s and 70s? Right? And then in the 80s? And 90s? It starts with Why are you just spending all your time gaming? The difference though, actually is people that were really into radio, became like radio operators. Right? And people that were really into TV became TV producers. It’s the same thing. No, anyway,
Evan Spytma 7:21
interesting. It’s interesting what you say about the linear projection of of difficulty in games, right? Go ahead. And that was one of the things that I found interesting that PopCap was, it was always it’s not linear. It’s, it’s, it’s more like a hill. Yeah. And as you it’s supposed to become more difficult. And then that boss battle, and all of a sudden, you feel like, I’ve gained some new skills, and it starts to get easier. And then the ramp up comes again. And it’s just, it’s that emotional play, similar to what you were saying about music.
Michael Waitze 7:57
But this is a metaphor, though. So think, just think about what you just said. Right? And actually, I’m gonna re explain this in the context of starting a company from scratch, which is what one of the things that both of you are doing. So tell me that at the beginning, it feels a little bit easy. You just do like the basic things. And then you just go up this slope where it’s like, You must be kidding me. How can I push this rock up that hill? And then when you get there, you’re like, Okay, now we’re going, that was easy. That was easy. And then you feel like you have new skills. Yes. And then you’re like, Oh, my God, I gotta do this thing again with the rock. No,
Evan Spytma 8:30
yeah. Yeah. Every every new game is like that. We’ve now launched 10 of them 10 games in 10. Games
Michael Waitze 8:37
with so what? So why did you launch their own games?
Evan Spytma 8:41
Oh, sorry. We’ve made investments and games, and then made those available to our scholars. So
Michael Waitze 8:46
tell me what this is like, then? How does this work?
Evan Spytma 8:49
So as you think you have it down, right, you You start off with XE and then you you go deep and xe, and you’ve learned about the breeding programs and the science behind it all? And then, okay, I’ve got it down. Yes. And then, you know, what you’re making develop, you’re making investments in games, six months, nine months before they even launch? Right? So at that point, when you’re making that investment, from the time you make the investment to the game launch things drastically change. Sure. Right. Yeah. And so some of the NF T’s that you’ve purchased, that you think are permanent, now have an energy to them, and they diminish over time. And you’re like, what, I didn’t know this, and they’re like, yes, well, we’ve changed all of that.
Michael Waitze 9:39
So tell me why the so before a game launches, I can purchase an NFT that’s available for that game or is it interoperable and I can buy it in another game and then move it into this new game.
Evan Spytma 9:50
Now this is Game specific. Go ahead and lefties Yeah. So what what we as a guild try to do is buy as many as those as possible. So by the time that game launches, we can just give them immediately to our scholars and have all of those players come on board.
Michael Waitze 10:06
Right? So you’re actually pre investing in the assets in the games. And why do you do that?
Irene Umar 10:11
One of our missions is to eradicate the barrier to entry for everyone to come in. So the more assets mean, the more impact we could create. And that’s why just know I mentioned, I need to touch upon this when Evan was saying that we were rolling out 10 games right today. And I say that yes. And we also create a robots for it. It’s not the robots to play, but as a robots to manage the number of NF T’s that we have. Does that mean, though, to automate the system? So for example, if we have 10,000 scholars,
Michael Waitze 10:44
right, so 10,000 scholars means 10,000 People
Irene Umar 10:47
10,000 People who are playing, for example, or 10,000 game accounts, however you want to say it, but if let’s say there are 10,000 It means that 10,000 wallets are involved, right? So with 10,000 wallets involved, imagine if it’s xe, which means it’s at least 30,000 30,000 axes that we have to manage. And so we need a board around it to manage the assignment of the accounts. So withdrawal was the entire back end process. And that’s only with one game. Imagine we have rolled out 10 games in the last six months. And we have at the moment 65 more to go
Michael Waitze 11:24
65 More games. Yes. So you’ve rolled out 10 games already. And how many wolves Did you say we’re playing actually, at least in this example.
Irene Umar 11:31
I mean, just an example, if we have 10,000 people playing axes, and in each
Michael Waitze 11:36
say they need three axes to play multiple 330 1000 which means you’ve got to you can’t have humans managing the interactions, or at least the
Irene Umar 11:46
well we can just humans won’t sleep.
Michael Waitze 11:50
Well, because it’s global. Yeah. So what do you do you create robots we have
Irene Umar 11:54
we have a system, we call it the bots. But what they do is they help us to automate the assignment of the account
Michael Waitze 12:01
assignment. Okay, but why are you a site go ahead?
Evan Spytma 12:04
So it’s, it’s like the account creation. So a new scholar comes on board, a new scholar comes on board, we need to create that that new account and assign three axes to that that account, okay, now, that player then wants to play something else. And now we have to take back those the axes and assign them to someone else.
Irene Umar 12:26
Let’s make it simpler. Imagine you have,
Michael Waitze 12:29
let’s do a one person universe. Can we do this? Let’s do a one player universe and a multi game. So I come in and I want to play I have a crypto wallet and I you assigned me the robot assigns me three axes. Yep. Yeah, I play the game. I do my thing. And then I don’t want to use those axes anymore. Yes. So what happens? We have to We means Why did you? Why did you activate withdrawal? So takes it away? And then I can go play another game? Yes. And when I do that, then what happens?
Evan Spytma 12:57
Then we have to assign those assets temporarily to you. You play those that game? And then once you’re done, we bring them back?
Michael Waitze 13:05
What if I want to buy the assets myself,
Evan Spytma 13:08
you could go out onto the open market and buy it at anytime.
Michael Waitze 13:11
So this is part of the tokenization of the game that right? In other words, I can go out and buy an xe or buy an NF t that exists in any kind of games. But one of the things that you’re doing is you’re buying them yourselves. Yes. And then renting them out to other people can’t necessarily afford them. Yes. Right. And if that happens, is there a way for me to earn enough money when I’m playing? So that then I no longer have to borrow them? Absolutely. And that then I can buy them myself? Absolutely. You both seem happy when I said that? Yes, of course. Because
Irene Umar 13:39
I always encourage scholars of our gamers right to graduate, we call that a graduations. Because we are here not not to just let them to play the games, not just to give them additional sources of income, but to introduce them to the new Metaverse have played to earn. If they could be financially independent and go out and buy more assets, what we could do is we could reassign the account to someone else and create more impacts. While this person could potentially earn enough income to become their own micro gills and increase that’s
Michael Waitze 14:10
what I want to know. That’s what I want to know. So if I let’s say I don’t have enough money, but I want to play I can borrow, right? And if I earn enough, then I can buy my own, then I don’t need to borrow from YG anymore. But now what do I become like my own sub Dow?
Irene Umar 14:28
You don’t become your own sub Dell you become in within the wide UGC ecosystem. We call them the LM Nice. So they have two options. Do you want to continue to be active because a lot of them have strong attachment with the community, right? And they are very active with the committee members. And they’re like, I want to continue helping and they know we have tons of games being rolled out. So they will come to us and say I’ve got this assets. Can I play our games and I’ll continue to help the community
Michael Waitze 14:54
so what do they do they take the assets that they own and is it like a lending program? Do you know what I mean?
Evan Spytma 15:00
So the guild is a lending program, absolutely at scale at scale, okay? And then you’re, you’re free to purchase NF t’s on the open market and play them. It’s just the amount of money that you need at that point to buy the NFT.
Michael Waitze 15:15
So can I ask you this? Can I buy an xe, I’m not a gamer at all,
Irene Umar 15:17
we need to transform to the other side.
Michael Waitze 15:22
But again, for no particular reasons, I’m just not good at it. Right. But let’s say I think that I want to own some axes, because I think that there’s a lending market out there that is active, right? Or any of the other games, we can get to that in a second. Can I just be like, and I look at everything because I worked at Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, I look at everything from like a stock loan stock borrow perspective, you can see where I’m going with this, right? Like, Oh, I hate these people really do as I do, and I love them. So you feel it can feel it. I can feel it. I’m ducking now from being punched. But you understand what I mean? That right? The whole point of like, some people just buy stocks, so they can then lend them out to other people who want to short them. Yeah. There’s a whole business around this. But is it the same thing in in the NFT, and crypto gaming world where I could just buy some assets, and then lend them back out to other people and earn a return that way as well.
Evan Spytma 16:15
That’s actually, on our roadmap, we were just discussing that.
Irene Umar 16:19
Yes. So we’ll be disclosing more about it. But in in general, right? Anyone could do that. But why does Why did you see becomes the guilt. And that’s why we have the infrastructure to do it at scale, right, because anyone out there who’s listening and who are inspired, for example, to create impacts you could do. So you could just go to the marketplace, buy the axes, just try with 1020 wallets. And let me know what you think.
Michael Waitze 16:47
Because this is where the bots
Evan Spytma 16:48
come into play, right? It’s not only about its overall back end technology, that you would have to trust those 10 people, because you would, you don’t have any technology, protecting that asset. So when you give it to them, you’re giving it to them, they could then take it, sell it on the open market, do whatever they want with it. But with us that asset, that NFT asset is actually protected, they cannot sell it, when we give it to them,
Michael Waitze 17:16
because you’ve built an entire back end Saudi business that actually manages all that stuff. This is what you were talking about before. And this is why I like to have these conversations, because now I have an image in my mind, of all the guys in the back office, who are doing the stock loan and stock borrow business. And that’s kind of what the guild provides. Not the only thing of course, but that’s one of the things that the guild provides to the players is that we’ll take care of the loan, we’ll take care of we own the assets, we keep them on our balance sheet. And if you want to use them, we’ll lend them out to you. Correct. And we’re also tracking so this is what the robots are doing at some level, right? So going, Okay, we’ve allocated these three to Evan Evans playing, he’s killing it, he’s earning part of that earnings comes back to me for all the infrastructure stuff that I built. That’s how you make money. And when I’m done with it, I give it back to you just like with a stock loan, and stock borrow.
Irene Umar 18:07
Yep, indeed, another thing is that we monitor it and we give a reward system. So if anyone are really good in playing the games, and they are very active in the community, the key word is being active in the community. Does that mean no? Meaning if you know, you see New Kids on the Block, right, who just come into the discord and their loss? Do you help them? Or did you? Do you not help them? Right? So there are a lot of communities who are very talkative. And we can we can, we can have the statistics of it from discord and from our system to see that. And so for those who are very active in helping out other people and have the time to do so, we would give them additional games to play with, which means additional stream of income for them additional exposures to a new play to earn games. And that’s how we built up the entire community. And so they see us a little bit differently because we’ve been rolling out games like like nobody’s business, right. And so for them, it’s it’s no longer grinding. Because last year, Michael, a lot of people feel that play to earn games is grinding. It’s not fun. That’s that’s the general myth that people have.
Michael Waitze 19:11
So it becomes this thing that they have to do. Correct. Almost like a job Correct. Go ahead.
Irene Umar 19:17
At that time, there was only one choice and not everyone in the world. Like one type of game. Different people have different types. If I asked, Evan, what type of girl do you like, Michael? What type of girl do you like? It’s definitely different. Same thing goes to games. And that is also why we’ve been rolling out games so that we can provide selections to people and so they would work and they would get you’re trying not to laugh, right?
Michael Waitze 19:45
Because there’s this you know, Evan and I, like smiled at each other, right? Because there’s this there’s this recognition of like, and I used to say this to my buddies, like we’ll never have to fight over girls. Because my taste is completely different from yours. I’d be like, Yeah, yours I don’t care. Like go for it. And the meaning of my buddy be like, really? That’s what you that’s what you’re interested in. It’s the same thing with gaming in a way, right? It’s like actually not interested. Yeah, but this thing, mine. Yep, kind of thing. Yeah. And you
Irene Umar 20:11
got nine out there to choose from that have rolled out.
Michael Waitze 20:15
So here’s what I want to know the right. How do you know what game to invest in?
Irene Umar 20:22
We got Oracle.
Michael Waitze 20:25
What do you know what I mean? Like how do you know? And like, do you do you? So there’s a there’s a company in Korea called GTR. Yeah, right. And GTR invests in games that running like a game investment studio. I had one of the founders, I think on the show. And then there’s that other guy. I can’t remember his name. The German dude, anyway. You’re laughing anyway. But I can’t remember his name. It doesn’t matter to me. Sure.
Irene Umar 20:47
I hope he’s not listening.
Michael Waitze 20:49
Pontus, I think isn’t it? Anyway, it doesn’t matter to me, but they like go out and invest in game studios. But I don’t think they’re doing crypto games in the same way that you are right. But how is are you running an investment business? Like, I’m just trying to figure out how to you know, if I’m a game developer from an indie game developer, do I come to you and go, Hey, and I’m doing this thing? Absolutely. Yeah. Yep. And what if I’m not building a crypto game? Is there a way for me to go, Wait a second, I could do this instead, and then add that functionality into my game. And then you can help me figure out how to do that kind of thing.
Unknown Speaker 21:18
There. There are a lot of web two games that are now adding the tokenomics for return. Right? And at that point, yes, absolutely. We’re interested to speak to them. But that’s, that’s typically we see about 80 games a day, or 8080 games a week, is what we review for played earn.
Irene Umar 21:38
That’s at least at least.
Michael Waitze 21:40
But where are they coming from
Evan Spytma 21:42
all over? Southeast Asia as well. I mean, our mandate really is to focus on Southeast Asian developers, developers. Yeah, we want to grow the the scholar market as well as the developer market. So in order for that ecosystem to thrive, on both sides, we need to invest on in both of them. Got it?
Irene Umar 22:04
That’s also why Solana has we have a partnership with Solana gaming, right? Because one of the things that if you look at the entire ecosystem of play to earn, when you create the games, it’s not just about game creations, when you throw in play to earn into it, you got a choice to make do you want, which chain Do you want it to be in? So in Southeast Asia, I don’t think a lot of people are truly exposed to the choices that they have. And that’s why we partner up with the likes of Solana for example, so that we could be able to share the technical know how to the people on the ground. And that is also why we have grassroots presence in each and every country so we can become closer. Like, Michael, I’ve done this with you three times. But this time around is different, because we are physically in one studio, right. And so that’s the thing that we think
Michael Waitze 22:50
about, we haven’t run out of stuff to talk about either. Like this is not a reasonable way. This is not a repeat of the conversation we’ve already had. And the more I know, the more I want to know kind of thing. Yeah. So if you’re investing in all these games, and trying to build out an ecosystem of game developers in Southeast Asia, which is what the SEA is,
Irene Umar 23:08
Last time I checked, yeah.
Michael Waitze 23:10
Yeah, but you say that, right. But for us, we know we take it for granted, right? Yeah. Yes. It’s almost like if you’re from New York, you can just go Yeah, I’m gonna go to Brooklyn. And it’s like, well, you know, what Brooklyn is, or I’m gonna get on the F train or whatever, right? You know what it is, but the rest of the world has no idea. Right? And one of the one of the reasons why I do this is because I want to inform, right? And you know, garena changed their name to SCA. Yeah. And I just thought, like, why would you change your name your whole name to? Like, is it C? Is it SCA like, it’s just so we was so confusing to me at the time, Karina I thought was a great name. Right? It was highly differentiated and easy to pronounce, and all that kind of stuff. Anyway. You need money to do this. Right. And we know that why did you in the Philippines raised I think it was like 5 million bucks from Andreessen or Andreessen Horowitz was, which I thought was kind of cool. But that’s not enough to invest in. If you’re seeing 80 games, a week, a week, a week. I mean, that’s a lot. That’s what we’ve reviewed. I understand that, but but you’re not investing in them, but you’re rolling out 10 more you said 65, more 65 more, I won’t hold you to it. If it’s 64 you’re not going to jail. And if it’s 66 you’re not like under I think more is gonna be added. Like, probably
Evan Spytma 24:24
as of last week, we had invested in 76 projects. We have 10 games that have already launched and the remaining they’re all launching this year. So that’s the rocket ship that we’re on but that’s an
Michael Waitze 24:39
insane schedule. Absolutely.
Evan Spytma 24:43
And are not stopping.
Michael Waitze 24:46
No I don’t imagine they are I like to joke about like you can see me right. I don’t look like I’m 19 but I always joke like I’m really only 23 but it’s the stress that makes me look like this anyway. Wait till you get here.
Evan Spytma 24:57
Oh, believe me. What am I good Friends kept rubbing my eyebrow. And he was like, What’s, there’s something on your eyebrows? No, those are those are gray hairs.
Michael Waitze 25:08
I completely understand. But the way I look at it is at least I have hair.
Irene Umar 25:12
Yeah. Being grateful, every step of very
Michael Waitze 25:15
grateful. Where does all the money come from, though to invest in all these games?
Evan Spytma 25:20
So the original seed funds came from IVC. And why GG, right? And then after that we launched in November by December, we raised another 15 million. Okay. And that came from leaders in crypto as well as banks came from all over.
Michael Waitze 25:40
Are you seeing what’s the right word like a secular change in the way that people are not just in fact, investing in games, but investing in? I don’t even want to call them projects anymore? Their businesses? Yeah. In crypto related businesses. You know what I mean? Like if you did this five years ago, you know, it’s a bunch of people that nobody ever heard of before. But now when Goldman Sachs starts investing in crypto gaming, it feels really mainstream to me. Are you seeing this as well, from your side?
Evan Spytma 26:10
I think it’s fairly true. I mean, we’ve had banks. come on board, you will be Bre VRI. That that’s Indonesia’s second largest bank 80% owned by the government and why GGC was their first crypto investment. Wow. And they’re just looking at that rate. market of 74% of Southeast Asia is unbanked. And they want them to come on board. And that first step is always Metamask. And from Metamask, it’s directly into a bank account. That’s what they want. You got it. You’re gonna say
Michael Waitze 26:51
Irene Umar 26:52
I wanted to say that. I think game fi accelerates the adoption of defy
Michael Waitze 26:57
for sure. That says this was the point I was trying to make earlier. But go ahead. And the reason why,
Irene Umar 27:01
why that happens is because if two three years ago, people are hesitant about is the same thing as 567 years ago for ages, right? Where people are undecided looking at gaming, and they’re like, this is something that I really want to get into. But I don’t know how, right, right, especially the boom of eSports and their own kids at home, doing eSports. And they’re like, What is this animal, I don’t get it. And there’s no bridge to help people to get there and understand it, or how people play how people earn money. With defi coming in Gamefly coming in, there’s income involved. And so everyone else is sitting on the sidelines thinking, I’ve always wanted to get into crypto, I’ve always wanted to get into gaming. And now boom, Gamefly has the best of both worlds, right? In a way that that is not easy to understand. But it makes slightly much more more sense right now, and what we try to do, and we always say that, right? We want to be that friendly face for anyone who comes in because each of us, Evan, I’m sure as well, we remember the first time we open our Metamask wallet, and we want no one to experience like that, you know, it’s okay to feel that you don’t know because we all started from there, and it’s fine. You’re not alone. Don’t feel stupid, it’s okay. And we want to be debt friendly, Facebook, everyone out there,
Michael Waitze 28:21
can we go back to this idea that I was talking about before where, you know, when you listened to the radio it made you want to either be on the radio or be a radio producer or make your own radios and that when TV came out and made you want to be a TV star or your producer. And it’s it was the same thing in the you know, 80s and 90s. With with games. But now because we’re all connected, and eSports is a really good example of this as well. Again, if you go back to the early 1900s, even the baseball teams that we root for, were like just traveling carnival shows. And you got to be sure that the parents of those kids are like, you’re on a carnival. But today, those guys and they’re mostly guys are making, you know, $40 million a year. You can argue about whether that’s a great way to spend your time or not. But you can’t argue about the economic impact that it has on people. Is that fair?
Irene Umar 29:12
That’s that’s really fair. tell you one story, Michael, there was a there was a couple of us scholars and only one right. A couple of scholars the moment they they get their first payout. They give it to their parents for sure. The first reaction the parents have, it’s not saying thank you. It’s like where did that come from? Exactly. Did you gamble? Did you steal? Everything keeps you got this role playing games? How is that even possible? And then boom, come the second month, the parents that slay
Michael Waitze 29:38
Yeah. But again, this is this is the point I’m trying to make is that everything that’s scary, at some point just becomes normalized. Yeah. And I was talking about I was talking to somebody who’s in the InsurTech space last night. About my daughter. I have a I have a 20 year old daughter 21 This year I think a good parent gives their kids rails, right. And I was saying that outside the rails are like drug dealing and human trafficking and prostitution and things, I think that we can all agree are bad. But inside there is kind of everything else. Right. And as long as like you said it may be gambling, but depending on you know, where you stand gambling is kind of okay. Right. But it just depends, right game is a sports. Yeah. But I mean, also like in the US, they’re they’re legalizing gambling in almost every state. I mean, FanDuel is the thing, right? Whether we like it or not, it’s a thing. But the point is that, you know, if you said I’m gonna go play baseball, and our money your parents, like, what are you doing? But today, the combination of Gamefly and defy is a real thing. And it’s never going away. It’s a perfect marriage, but it’s not going to go away. It’s not right. And eSports I think is the same way. And at some point, all these things are they combined, and then in 20 years, we’ll look back on this, and it’ll really feel quaint, I think, like, people didn’t understand first of all, but we’re against it will seem kind of weird. No. Yeah. And
Irene Umar 31:02
I think I mean, this, this could seem a bit philosophy fickle, but I feel that this is a tool for humanity to really combine passion and purpose and a job together. That’s That’s my personal take shirt.
Michael Waitze 31:15
Right? So one of the things that we were talking about downstairs before we came up here was Why do I have this room? Right? And the idea, and we haven’t really mentioned you mentioned Metamask, but we haven’t mentioned the metaverse really at scale yet, right? Yeah. But if we’re going to exist in a virtual world going forward, and I don’t think it’s an F, right, because one of the things that COVID forced us to do was learn how to be remote. Whether we liked it or not at first. But that’s going to be the way we interact, I think from now on. So the idea for me is to build a bunch of places where people can behave remotely and look great. At the same time and sound great at the same time. No, because in real life, right? It matters,
Irene Umar 32:06
because you switch the camera, so you can check yourself Oh, no,
Michael Waitze 32:09
no, no, no to show you. The difference between what bad online looks like and good online looks like right? Because it matters. But that’s all going to get normalized. And if that’s normalized if we’re going to sit if we say to each other that we’re going to exist in a virtual world. Well, gaming is the entry point to all that. Yeah, and decentralized. Gaming is the entry point, all of that because again, once people get used to it, then when they exist in that realm, in their regular life in quotes, it won’t seem weird.
Evan Spytma 32:40
I was just having this conversation. About a month ago with my my good friend, he he was watching me with my, my nine year old son, right. And we were going through and and I was teaching them how to actually stake claim everything. And he’s he went home and they had this conversation with his wife. And he’s like, I don’t know if that’s the right thing to do, you know, with a kid to teach him about crypto currencies. And then he just in he came back to me the next day and said, You’re preparing him as a as a parent for the future. And he said, This is the future. He’s like, you’re doing this correctly. He’s like, now I’ve got my daughter. I’m teaching her about Metamask and, and she’s also playing crypto unicorns and Clinton and going into the the dark forest to get their unicorn milk. And they’re they’re actually learning about different chains and all the various elements that you need to know about the metaverse just
Michael Waitze 33:45
welcome to welcome to the modern world, right and I think it’s it’s it’s Luddites, I think they’re gonna get left behind. And you can argue about whether his gaming a productive thing or not, we talked about this earlier, the same dude and gal that were sitting like playing Space Invaders, is now our impoverishment, who is now building things for others? Whether you love his games, or don’t, it doesn’t really matter, right? It’s just that we’re even Thomas Vu, right? Who was like, was it epic? At Epic Games? I think I can’t remember. It doesn’t matter to me. But the point is that, like, these are very highly productive people. But started off just like sitting downstairs playing Atari. So we can argue about whether it’s productive or not today, but we know where it’s going in the future. And you’re right, you gotta you got to prepare your kids for what’s going to happen next. As you know, my parents took me when I had like, $5 to a bank when I was like six years old and said open a bank account. And what’s the difference? No,
Evan Spytma 34:43
absolutely. I my my son’s like, so Dad, can I buy those Legos? And I was like, Okay, did you do your chores? Did you get collect your unicorn mail?
Michael Waitze 34:54
Have you staked anything? So talk to me about your idea. But what is an idea? What’s it doing? Is it an idea and an ICO? What’s the significance of it? Why would you do it?
Irene Umar 35:05
I’ll pass the technicalities of the difference between ICU and idea to Evan, but I’ll talk about the fun stuff. So always do this. I have the mic in front of me, I have the best guru to learn from a K u. So the reason why we will do ideal, right, because we see a lot of people sitting on the sidelines saying that I want to be a part of this, but I don’t play games. Right? And I don’t have time to go and stake send my unicorns to the dark forest and get unicorn meal, right? What do I do? And then that’s one. And then second, we’ve got whole bunch of scholars who are who are now starting to learn, right, how to invest and how to choose and pick tokens. And they have always been a part of the community and a part of what we do since day one. So the purpose of the idea is to open up opportunities to everyone to the community who have been a part of us since they want to own a piece of us.
Michael Waitze 35:58
And let’s just say what the audio stands for. For people that don’t know, Evan,
Irene Umar 36:02
the boring stuff as usual.
Michael Waitze 36:03
No, go go go. i What can I say? Go for it. Initial decentralized exchange offering?
Irene Umar 36:11
Yes, you’re right. Yes, go ahead.
Michael Waitze 36:13
Okay, so go ahead. So you’re doing basically,
Irene Umar 36:17
it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity to take part in the historic moment within the crypto space, where the first batch of sea tokens is minted?
Michael Waitze 36:25
And what does that give you though? So let’s say I participate in the idea or somebody
Irene Umar 36:29
sounds a bit more excited after that one line. Yeah, so if you own a piece of that, right, you’re being a part of obviously the first batch of the meant. But also, it means that you are a part of something that we’re going to build. Okay, I’m sounding very, very vague over here, because we haven’t launched the article on the roadmap. But being a guild and you did a deep dive on what a guild business is, being a guilty since the beginning of what why GGC is going to build as a part of the entire ecosystem. We want not only to become that friendly face for people to be on boarded into the metaverse, but we would like to be the front runner of developing the end to end ecosystem and connecting the dots through collaborations so that it’s it’s an easier journey and a more pleasant journey for everyone,
Michael Waitze 37:25
but also an inclusive journey. And inclusive, I mean, isn’t the whole point of the idea is to share ownership in the Yeah, that’s the whole point, right is to share ownership and the success or failure of the communities that you that you join. Right. So you’re not just joining for nothing. Yeah. And you’re and if he does succeed, you get to participate in that success. This is the point that I want to make. Right? Right. And that is if I participate in the IDEO, it could fail. But as a community member, I actually have agency to help it succeed. And if it does succeed, I’m not just sitting in the stands rooting for the Red Sox, which all good people do. That’s a joke between the two of us. But I’m actually benefiting from the wins and losses that occur. But I think this is the point you want to make.
Irene Umar 38:22
Yes, yeah. That’s entrepreneurship 101. No, it is though.
Michael Waitze 38:25
But for people that don’t understand what that means, right? It’s important for them to know that like, it’s, there’s a selfless part of this, right. So again, I was having a conversation with the guys who run semeiotic.ai. And one of the things that they do is they run simulations to understand whether the behavior of any particular project is selfish or pro social. And the idea is, the more pro social, you are, right? If you look at any of these tokenization models, the more pro social you are, the more likely that it’s going to be successful. Yep. And that they do this analysis on it using AI agents and, you know, to, before these things get launched to understand how pro socialist this because if it is, then the people that participate in the ideos will benefit. Yes, that’s important.
Irene Umar 39:14
Definitely. It goes back to the to the basic theory of the universal law. Right, the more the more you give, the more you shall receive.
Evan Spytma 39:23
So, when I first joined from the white GG community, what I had heard is we didn’t get on board fast enough. We weren’t able to become part of the why GG Dow, because when they did their token offering, it was sold out in 21 seconds. 12 or I read 21
Irene Umar 39:44
I really, yeah. So I was trying to click on that button and 12 seconds gone, okay,
Michael Waitze 39:49
okay. It’s just the same number in a mirror.
Evan Spytma 39:53
And so when, when we started to look at our launch, we started to think about But how can we get the community involved? And how could we draw this out for as long as possible to allow everyone no matter where in the world they are to participate? So that’s why we chose copper. So bots perform horribly on copper.
Michael Waitze 40:18
So what does that mean? In other words, you’re trying to prevent automated peep automated mechanisms from participating before humans do.
Evan Spytma 40:26
Absolutely. So the way copper works is the price continues to escalate as, as there is demand, the moment people stop buying, the price decreases, and you’ll meet your market price in the end, based on that equation, okay. So what we have right now is we’ve gamified a little bit of this process because we didn’t want all of the rewards going to the whales,
Michael Waitze 40:54
right? Because it’s because it’s anathema to what web three is supposed to be right? Right. If it’s really decentralized, then you don’t want concentrated ownership, because then it’s meaningless. Yep, absolutely. Go ahead.
Evan Spytma 41:05
So then we we said, Okay, well, we’ll have a leaderboard. Now we’ll be there’s a main leaderboard, but every six hours, we’re going to have our daily leaderboard. And we’re going to give out a lot of rewards on our daily leaderboard. And every six hours, it resets. So no matter where in the world, when you’re you start waking up and you want to participate, there’s an opportunity for you to get on the leaderboard on a daily one, okay. And what we’re doing is pushing a lot of the rewards into that daily reward system.
Michael Waitze 41:39
Okay, and how does that benefit the people that are participating in the idea?
Evan Spytma 41:43
They receive additional rewards based on their their tier within the leaderboard?
Michael Waitze 41:49
What does that mean, though? So the reward is more tokens for them? Absolutely. I just want to make sure that
Irene Umar 41:55
in summary, right in in typical ideos, you buy a whole bunch of tokens, if they are leaderboards, you have a whole bunch of tokens, and you need to be a whale in order to get some bigger rewards, right? So what we try to do is like whatever is said, we break down the leaderboards to measure it every six hours, okay, so every day, you have four slots for opportunities to get to the top. And it’s not top three is top 500 500 People could could couldn’t get there and reap more rewards for it. So what we do is we distribute the rewards as much as possible, as much as we possibly could to the communities who might not be able to invest like, like the whales do. Right? So it’s about giving opportunities equal opportunity to as many people as possible.
Evan Spytma 42:46
So each day is essentially a pool. Yeah. Think of it as a pool. And you’ve got 10 million coins to give away on a daily basis. So the faster that people and within that six hour period, the faster people get on board and start staking and locking their coins. They’re going to be gathering from that pool of 10 million coins per day.
Michael Waitze 43:10
And is that going on now? That starts Monday, May 9 itself starts the ninth of May. And pm Bangkok 10pm Bangkok time, which is what nine o’clock in the morning. New York time? No, that’s the other 11 o’clock in the morning New York time. I think. I can’t remember horrible with time.
Evan Spytma 43:28
Irene Umar 43:32
That’s a good save.
Michael Waitze 43:35
For all of you Greenwich Meridian time people out there. Well,
Irene Umar 43:43
yeah, we do it for five days, right? Because, like you asked a good question just now like, how does it work in copper launch? So a lot of people never participated in copper launch before seven? Yeah. So there are a lot more out there that have never even heard of copper launch. So we put it as five days. So we enable people the time to learn and understand how it works. Okay, so this is the y o r, manifest, do your research, do your research, and you have the time to do so without missing out on the window of
Michael Waitze 44:16
opportunity. Does that mean that every day is different, right. So in other words, if I like miss out on something on Monday, I can come back on Tuesday, and it’s like a brand new day.
Evan Spytma 44:24
The leaderboard refreshes. So the reward program refreshes. Okay. But all of those that staked for, of course, day one, they’re all automatically staked for day two.
Michael Waitze 44:34
So what does somebody do who hears about this, but doesn’t even have like a crypto wallet? How do they participate?
Irene Umar 44:43
Go to our medium articles. We have the step by step guide on how to do that. It’s the same questions that our scholars give us, right? Like, how do we participate? And so we we, we share our knowledge on how to do it. That’s why in the medium article that we have published, it’s very the How to He’s very step by step.
Michael Waitze 45:01
Okay. So we can link to that in the show notes if people want to participate, and that’s okay. Yeah. Okay, what else do we need to know about this idea? I
Evan Spytma 45:10
think it’s the first step of our token moving from a governance token to a utility token.
Michael Waitze 45:17
Okay, and how big is it gonna be? Like how big? It’s a five day thing?
Evan Spytma 45:20
It’s a five day event?
Michael Waitze 45:21
And how big is it going to be? Do you have any idea?
Irene Umar 45:25
The community will know.
Michael Waitze 45:28
will know when it’s done, though? Yeah, absolutely. Okay. And you expect it to sell out in 12 or 21 seconds every day. Like, I don’t know how it
Evan Spytma 45:36
works. Were placing 30 75 million coins out into the market for purchase over a five day period over a five day period, which is 7.5% of the overall dow
Michael Waitze 45:49
7.5% of the overall Dow. Okay.
Irene Umar 45:52
And the beauty of copper launches, because there’s a price discovery system, right, where the movements of the price is dependent on the supply and the supply and demand. And so if we’ve set it for five days, it will not be sold out until day five.
Michael Waitze 46:09
So what’s 15 million a day?
Irene Umar 46:15
This is billion tokens, so we haven’t times it by the dollar the dollar. We don’t know. I try to Temple this morning, Michael and I couldn’t get the answer for
Michael Waitze 46:24
the money. sighs I don’t care about it’s 15 million tokens a day? Yeah. It’s because that’s 75 million in total. Over a five day period of time,
Evan Spytma 46:32
so you went to the temple? We went to the temple. I know. But what did you have? There were two locations in that temple. Right. And you were supposed to pray for different things. You weren’t
Michael Waitze 46:42
in the temple together? No, we weren’t. We were you go to separate places in the temple.
Evan Spytma 46:46
There were two locations that we went to everything had to follow a certain path. Got it. And we were supposed to. We even saw a fortune teller and we had to
Irene Umar 46:58
not by choice.
Evan Spytma 47:02
Our fellow co founder Ricci is a tie. He really believes in this. So we all came together and and went on this journey with him. And fair enough, in certain certain locations, you’re supposed to ask for certain things. Okay.
Irene Umar 47:21
I’m dead consistent. Evan. I’m super consistent because I only have one focus and one focus only in my heart, which is YGG SEA.
Evan Spytma 47:29
fair. Fair enough. Kind
Michael Waitze 47:30
of like the way you pointed at the heart. And this t shirt not I’m talking about your beating heart. I mean, the heart you run around your neck. Directly. Yes.
Evan Spytma 47:43
You prayed for the same thing in both locations.
Irene Umar 47:46
Of course it shows consistencies and the seriousness, right. Okay. And someone wants to go back to the temple. No, no, no, no.
Michael Waitze 47:55
What kind of Temple was it?
Irene Umar 47:58
It’s one of the Thai temples a Buddhist temple, though. It’s a Buddhist temple. Interesting.
Michael Waitze 48:02
Okay, great. Yeah. It’s almost like praying for merit. I don’t know what you’d call I’m not a strict Buddhist. But yeah, okay. Fair enough.
Evan Spytma 48:09
In one of the locations, you’re supposed to ask for something. specifically asked that was the first one only the second one was on the day, May 9. What do you want? was the second one,
Irene Umar 48:24
right? I was very specific on both I see your name and I seem to remember, no more rahang. Okay, I’ll read to stop here.
Michael Waitze 48:35
Okay, we’re gonna stop at the end of the Temple experience.
Irene Umar 48:37
I remember. They were like, I swear to God, I remember this. But when I was younger, but I totally forget it right now. I guess I got might scare.
Michael Waitze 48:46
Yeah, I mean, this a little bit of stage fright when you’re on the microphone. Let’s do this. Let’s finish here. This was really great. Evan Speidel. Great to meet you, co founder and CEO of why GGC I renew more you keep coming back. I think you’ll keep coming back as well and ever. We should have you back again, as well. I read the co founder. And they country head of Indonesia. Thank you both so much for doing this.
Irene Umar 49:06
Thank you so much for having us on Michael
Michael Waitze 49:11
after we finished recording this episode. I really haven’t. And I just kept talking and we wanted to record some of the things that we were speaking about. Please listen to the bonus part of this episode right after this. Thank you. So let’s, let’s come back from the temple and and back into the rewards program. The temple was interesting. I’ve been to Buddhist temples you don’t know this, but when I went to dosha University for my year abroad, right, you were talking about your Sansai Gaidai right. But when I went to Kyoto, I mean dosha they took us up to this Mount Koya Khoisan, and we spent a weekend in living in this temple like a Buddhist monk. And we did something called Zen. Not from it’s a special sector of Zen. and Buddhism where I think you’re meant to experience a little bit of pain. So you’re meant to sit straight, right? For as long as you possibly can, and the monks will walk around with this stick. And if you kind of if your tie say what does that mean, if the shape of your body varies from what they think is the right way to sit, don’t take that stance. Whoa, now, if you’re lucky, they hit you like right on that muscle and your shoulder blade that feels really good. You’re like, maybe I’ll just move a little bit. It’s like an unanticipated massage. But anyway, it was great to be at the temple. Let’s talk a little bit more about the rewards, right? You’re saying Remember, I asked you before this whole point about like, everyone’s supposed to benefit from it? Right? Right. So how does that work?
Evan Spytma 50:41
So this is we haven’t released anything just yet about this. But when we think about our community, and how we can get them more involved in what we do on a day to day basis, so I had, we think of the governance token is really ownership of the sub Dow and being an owner of that sub Dow, how can we show that appreciation to the owners. And so we started to think about what is it that we, we create, and of course, there’s a scholarship program that people benefit from. But it’s also derived from our investments in all of these 76 games. So as of this week,
Michael Waitze 51:28
so if I so if I participate in the idea, well, I own the games that you own, at least a piece of it or something. So what
Evan Spytma 51:34
we’re, what we’re doing is, we’re launching a, a project that’s never been done before on the open market, where those that participate, they stay can lock, they will also be able to receive tokens of the games that we invest in. So as a reward as a special reward to those that participate in the why GGC copper launch, if they purchase, if they purchase and lock in stake, they will receive nine game tokens, for those that are on the leaderboard.
Michael Waitze 52:20
And those are just for the existing games, though.
Evan Spytma 52:23
These are the nine games that have been there may be more by the by the coming months, right. But these are nine games that have said, we’re willing to give our tokens to your community
Irene Umar 52:38
as a reward as a reward,
Michael Waitze 52:40
and why would they do that? Because they love us. Yeah, but it’s more than that, though. Right? Why would they? Of course,
Irene Umar 52:45
I think, Evan please add to it. I think there are values that they see right that we are creating, essentially, our communities also their community. Our scholars who play their games are also their community in the end of the day.
Michael Waitze 53:00
So he’s wanting to try to create its own kind of neighborhood in the metaverse or its own metaverse. You know what I mean?
Evan Spytma 53:08
I think we have a long way to go to build out the
Michael Waitze 53:12
ecosystem, you understand what I mean? Because here’s the way I look at it. We talked about this earlier in the conversation. But if there’s if we can create a virtual world, right, if we think we’re going to exist virtually. And I have this theory that governments as they exist today, based on geographical borders are going to get nervous, because people will organize around interests, as opposed to mountains, rivers, and oceans, which is how they organized before. And if we want to get really philosophical, where you put yourself in the metaverse is almost like where you put yourself from a religious standpoint at some level, right? I believe in this. Or I believe in that. Hopefully, nobody dies in the metaverse for that. But but the point is that if we’re going to organize that way, well, it just means that if I can create enough people that believe in what I believe I can create my own community and if that community then is functioning in a tokenized way. Well, then that’s my own metaverse. Right and my citizenship, again, in quotes in that community can then be governed through a whole bunch of different tokenization models, which gets back to the semiotic conversation we’re having before about what is the pro social behavior or the selfish behavior that exists inside that Metaverse, which can be controlled through tokenization know,
Irene Umar 54:40
you touch on a lot of points that I’m trying my best not to drop too much AlphaServer over here and I know that Evan the wise one is forming his thoughts, but we mentioned this we dropped this to the community a couple of months ago when we say that because a lot of people ask us right what is why GGC batch for other than looking it. And we told the House what to say we told the universe but we told your community that that is your passport to the white GGC metaverse. And so far, we’ve been saying that yes, YDC is a guilt is a sub del of YG. And it’s a Gil. But all I can say is that this is the beginning of the ecosystem that we’re building. And what you say is a glimpse of it.
Michael Waitze 55:25
Yeah. This is why people either really enjoyed talking to me or really don’t enjoy it. Because they’re like, why are you smiling? Why are you exposing my roadmap? But I’m not. I’m just curious. Yeah, I
Evan Spytma 55:36
mean, the guild really is the just phase one, right of this roadmap. This is the onboarding of scholars. So these are onboarding people into the Metamask. Once they’re there, there’s various verticals that can be created around the guild to further support that, that supporters journey into the metaverse and that’s what we’ll be building out. It’s it’s a it’s the core functionality of the guild will continue to expand we’re expanding into for three more markets this year. We’ll be covering every single country by 2024. We’ll have community centers in each country in Southeast Asia. Right. And along with that, we’re going to start building out a very robust ecosystem around us good. Got it.
Irene Umar 56:36
Quiet, don’t look at me.
Michael Waitze 56:38
I think we’re done then. Okay, thank you again.