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Cryptovoxels 2020 Milestones

Cryptovoxels project development happens so quickly that we figure it would be helpful to round up all the big points. Please note, this is not a complete list, and all the information is gathered from what was publicly posted on twitter and the Cryptovoxels discord. Without further due, this is what the team is currently working on:

* Performance and bug fixing
* Matrix chat upgrade
* Multiplayer scripting
* Free build mode (Spaces)
* Global illumination
* Babylon native experiment
* VRM avatar experiment

Ben Nolan mentioned to the community that he is getting his head around the fact that Cryptovoxels feels 'feature complete' for now. So instead of making tons of new features, the team's focus is to make what we already have faster, prettier, and improve scripting. Make everything work real good.

Chat is another thing that is on the list to be improved. Ben has been digging into integrating Matrix, an open source project that publishes the Matrix open standard for secure, decentralised, real-time communication.

Matrix will open up some interesting opportunities for interoperability to occur. Using an open standard, Matrix can exchange data and messages with other platforms by bridges.

A proof of concept idea with a Matrix bridge could be having parcels connected to private chat rooms like IRC, Discord, Slack, etc. When a person enters a parcel, the Cryptovoxels chat can automatically be linked to the other chat platform. 

Decentraland has recently integrated Matrix into their main client. If Cryptovoxels integrates Matrix then messages can send back and forth between DCL and CV.

The next feature that has recently shipped is the multiplayer server which runs your parcel scripts on the Cryptovoxels infrastructure. This basically enables multiplayer games and synced events such as doors opening or closing. More APIs are expected to be released in the future, for now the documentation sites at: https://wiki.cryptovoxels.com/en/Scripting/TheGrid.

Ben has also mentioned that he started working on an invite system. How it works is:

* You 'claim' some parcels
* You and friends get to build
* If you build, you 'submit' the build
* And get to buy at a fixed price

So you have:

* Choose your Neighbours
* New builders
* Encourage builds
* Fixed price

However, it might be that this idea could of evolved with the new Spaces feature that was just shipped with Cryptovoxels version 4. Spaces is essentially a free build mode with trimmed down features, such as no multiplayer. The idea behind Spaces for attracting new builders into Origin City goes something like:

1. Create an awesome space
2. Select a parcel on a build island
3. Submit your space as a build for that parcel
4. The submission is approved
5. The parcel is yours (at a discounted price)

Things spaces won't have (compared to Parcels):

* Multiplayer
* Grid Scripting
* Lightmapping

Things spaces won't be:

* Browseable
* Searchable
* Transferrable

Users that log into the website and click their account will see the new Spaces tab and can play around with it now. https://www.cryptovoxels.com/account/spaces

The next feature being worked on is lightmapping and global illumination. Take a sneak peek below:

Babylon native will mean compiling the game into a standalone app that can be distributed through app marketplaces such as steam, windows, and potentiall the apple store. The software will run closer to the metal, giving performance a boost.

Finally, the Cryptovoxels team has been exploring VRM avatar support. VRM is a royalty free file format for handling 3D humanoid avatars. It is the most interoperable avatar format that exists, since there are dozens of applications (mostly Japanese) that already support it. Here's a fan made concept art visualization of what Cryptovoxels might look like with VRM support.

It's extremely impressive how much this small team is accomplishing, especially when you can see it all put together of just the past month!