In brief

  • Dapper Labs has launched a new platform called Flow Playground for developers to create new smart contracts and collectable tokens.
  • It will also include the deployment of a new programming language and accelerator program.
  • Flow raised $11 million last year and is backed by major players like Ubisoft and Andreessen Horowitz.

If you enjoyed collecting CryptoKitties, how would you like to develop your own?

Dapper Labs, the creators of CryptoKitties, yesterday launched Flow Playground, a new web interface that will help developers test smart contracts and tokens. The interface will allow developers to write smart contracts and test “on-chain currencies, collectibles, marketplaces and more,” the company said. 

What that all means is game developers will now be able to create whole, new CryptoKittie-like worlds of their own—on the Flow blockchain, as opposed to Ethereum. And that’s just for starters.

As part of the launch, Flow will provide resources for developers to learn a new programming language they call “Cadence,” which is similar to languages like Swift and Rust, for developers to test the digital assets they create. 

Dieter Shirley, Dapper Labs CTO, told Decrypt that existing smart-contract languages like Solidify require too much complex code, auditing and management. “We think it's a far better way to build digital assets that will mean less code to write, maintain, and audit, and should result in dramatically fewer bugs,” he said.

One of the early partners is the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), which last month announced plans to tokenize digital collectables that represent fighters like Conor McGregor and will be tradable on marketplaces built on the Flow blockchain. 

Meanwhile, competitors such as the Worldwide Asset Exchange (WAX) are also doing their part to expand the crypto collectibles market. Earlier this week, WAX teamed up with American trading card maker Topps to tokenize collectible cards, starting with the retro hit Garbage Pail Kids.

Flow similarly has its share of big partners as well. Last year, it raised $11 million in funding, and the venture is backed by major players like video game developer Ubisoft, media giant Warner Music Group, and Adreessen Horowitz’s crypto fund, a16z crypto.

Despite these major partnerships, Shirley said “we won’t consider Flow successful until the apps and experiences built by other teams are bigger than anything we’re doing for ourselves.” 

And to advance that vision, Flow also announced a new accelerator program, Flow Alpha, to advise potential users on marketing, business development, and fundraising. “The goal is an open community, not a walled garden,” said Shirley.