Arbitrum Is About to Unlock $250 Million in Funds for Ethereum Games

In an attempt to bolster the Ethereum layer-2 network’s gaming ecosystem, it appears that over $250 million worth of Arbitrum tokens will be unlocked over the next three years, following strongly positive support for a DAO proposal that’s currently being voted on by token holders.

Arbitrum is a scaling network that enables cheaper and faster transactions than the Ethereum mainnet. It’s also attracted a number of prominent gaming projects, including the Xai layer-3 network, Treasure’s Infinity Chains, Proof of Play’s on-chain gaming network, the AnimeChain, and the upcoming ApeChain built to power Bored Ape Yacht Club-themed projects via ApeCoin.

But even with so much gaming action already in the works on Arbitrum, the network’s backers want to encourage even more growth in that direction.

The Gaming Catalyst Program (GCP) aims to empower gaming on the network to the tune of 225 million ARB tokens (just over $255 million) over a three year period. This includes 200 million ARB that will be dedicated specifically towards gaming projects, as well as another 25 million ARB to be used to help administer the funding campaign.

These tokens will be “strategically” allocated focusing on two initiatives. The first initiative, builder onboarding and growth, will receive 160 million ARB tokens in an attempt to attract and support game developers. Funds will be allocated via grants or direct investment in projects, on a deal-by-deal basis.

As for the second initiative, infrastructure bounties, this will be allocated 40 million ARB tokens to set up the Arbitrum network to properly serve the gaming community it’s aiming to foster. This includes tooling and other technical infrastructure needed to power on-chain games.

“Publishers and developers will be subject to a robust set of checks and balances to ensure alignment with this proposal’s goals and Arbitrum DAO’s values,” the DAO proposal says. This process will include the formation of a council of five individuals with gaming expertise which will oversee the program, in addition to support of the Arbitrum Foundation.

As of this writing, the vote has reached quorum and has nearly 83% positive votes—down from approximately 98% positive votes as of Thursday. Voting ends on June 7. Treasure lauded the positive response in a tweet late Wednesday, writing that the proposal was “on track to being unlocked for Treasure and others focused on gaming within the Arbitrum ecosystem.”

Over the three-year period, the program aims to fund 100 to 200 games, result in over 50 Arbitrum Orbit chains launched, and see more projects migrate to Arbitrum compared to other Ethereum scaling options.

That said, the proposal acknowledges that it will take some time before the funding initiatives generate results. Namely, most games funded through this program will not be live this year, particularly with grant applications not expected to open until June or July.

“The GCP is meant to serve as a catalyst, not a comprehensive program,” the DAO proposal explains. “After the rollout of the GCP, the aim is to use its learnings to mature the organization into a longer-term gaming program with a comprehensive approach to game ecosystem growth.”

Edited by Andrew Hayward

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