Crypt-Oink is a Japanese digital collectible game on the Ethereum blockchain. It’s also a racing game.

In keeping with the Japanese kawaii culture, the collectibles you buy and race in Crypt-Oink are piglets in all kinds of sizes and shapes. Crypt-Oink was a relatively unknown DGame until the beginning of 2019, when its daily active users (DAU) started increasing rapidly. In May 2019, the game has over 220 DAU, surpassing CryptoKitties and easily placing itself in the top five of most-played Ethereum DGames.

Run, piglets! Run!

From the get-go, what I like about Crypt-Oink is that the English translation of the game is good. Good Luck 3, the development team behind Crypt-Oink, clearly put a lot of effort in making sure that Crypt-Oink is both playable for English-speaking players as much as it is for Japanese players. In fact, they even translated the game’s name: the Japanese version of the game is called Crypton, because the Japanese character for Ton (豚) means “pig.” Crypton means “crypto pig” in Japanese, but that play on words wouldn’t have translated in English, so they called the English version Crypt-Oink.

Despite the name change, and to avoid confusion in this article, the digital collectibles in Crypt-Oink are still called Cryptons. And the first thing you’re likely to do in Crypt-Oink is have a look at its marketplace to buy one or more Cryptons. After all, before the release of the racing component of the game, Crypt-Oink was first and foremost a digital collectible game not too dissimilar from CryptoKitties or Blockchain Cuties.

Crypt-Oink as a Digital Collectible Game

There are two ways to buy a Crypton. You can either buy a generation 0 Crypton through the official shop, where they currently cost either 0.094 or 0.059 ETH, or you can buy a gen 1 or higher Crypton on the market for prices ranging from 0.001 to 999 ETH.

As you can see, there are many different kinds of Cryptons

The difference between gen 0 Cryptons and higher-gen Cryptons is that any gen 0 Crypton has a “start dash” skill, which comes in handy when racing them. This doesn’t mean Cryptons that aren’t gen 0 don’t have any skills. In fact, any Crypton that wears a body, head, or foot accessory will have a skill related to that accessory, something I find extremely cool.

For example, the top left Crypton on the above screenshot, the one that looks like a piggy bank? Its body accessory gives it a skill called “Breaking the Bank”, which slightly lowers the speed and stamina of a rival Crypton when it gets passed by in a race. Big props to the development team for creating visible accessories that reflect an in-game skill. It makes browsing through Cryptons much more fun.

Otherwise, each Crypton has fourteen different attributes, a cooltime that determines how quickly your Crypton can breed again, and three stats that will determine its performance in a race (more on that later).

The logic behind breeding Cryptons is no different from any other digital collectible game. Each Crypton has a genetic code and its offspring will be a mix of either parent’s code. What is different, however, is that the accessories on each parent (that determine the skills) have a chance of being passed on to their offspring too.

Crypt-Oink as a Racing Game

One of the main gripes I have with CryptoKitties is its limited playability. Although extremely polished, there’s little to do except collect Kitties. Up until November 2018, Crypt-Oink was no different. There wasn’t much else to do beyond collect and breed Cryptons. However, this all changed with the introduction of races on the 21st of November 2018.

It was such a big addition to the game that Crypt-Oink rebranded itself entirely. It became an Ethereum-based racing game. Suddenly, gathering and breeding Cryptons was no longer the sole purpose of the game. Instead, you would buy and breed Cryptons in order to race them. The game became much more playable, and it’s no surprise that the game became significantly more popular as a result.

My little Crypton running as fast as it can

Each Crypton has three main attributes that determine how well they’ll race: speed, power, and stamina. Speed is great for long, straight stretches, while power is good for corners and stamina is good for the overall speed of your Crypton throughout the entire race.

Additionally, Cryptons have a TP number, which represents their current abilities and talents, and a Potential number, which represents their innate abilities and talents. The higher, the better for both metrics. Cryptons also have the chance to pass on buffs to their offspring, acquired throughout their lifetime by racing. And they all have a Skill Fire Rate, which is the percentage chance they’ll activate one of their skills when its conditions are met.

The racing stats of a very young Crypton in the user shop

Before you start racing, it’s best practice to train your Crypton. It needs to get ready for the race! You can send Cryptons to the gym, where you’ll see them run on a treadmill, read, and eat. In exchange for energy (of which each Crypton has a limited amount) some of their vital race stats will go up during a session. Energy goes back up after a certain amount of time.

In the gym, you can also use items, from a box of milk to recover energy to the delicious Tusky Bars that will increase your Crypton’s power by two during training. All of these items can be bought for Coinks. These are Crypton’s in-game coins, which you can buy for Ethereum or which you can get in the daily lottery, which you can play once a day.

Once you’ve trained your Crypton and once its energy has recovered (because races cost energy too) you can schedule them in for a League Race, a Season Race, or the Monthly Cup. Each race is on a different track, has different obstacles, different prizes, and a different qualification period. League Races are the best races for beginners, while the Monthly Cup is the most prestigious race.

There are five Cryptons in each race. Although you can’t control the Crypton yourself, there are quick-time events where you need to press a button to improve the chance of your Crypton avoiding obstacles. All in all, it’s quite fun to see your Crypton race and use its abilities.

This being said, the web app was quite laggy on my device, which might have to do with my device’s limited amount of memory (4GB of RAM) or with the fact that Crypt-Oink’s servers are likely far away from where I am. It looks like a technical issue that I’m sure will be ironed out quite quickly by the Good Luck 3 team.

You can also bet on races

Racing your digital collectibles is already quite innovative. But Crypt-Oink doesn’t stop innovating there. You can also bet on upcoming races. You can either make a Win bet or an Exacta bet. With the Win bet, you simply determine who you think will finish first. With the Exacta bet, you bet on which Crypton will come first and which one will come second. You’re able to see the odds of each Crypton winning based on their stats, along with the obstacles of each course. Of course, you can also look at each race participant individually to best determine who you think will win the race.

All of this is explained quite clearly through tooltips when you click on the question marks scattered throughout the game. The developers have done an excellent job of helping you understand the separate mechanisms of their game.

There are always new things to do

In Conclusion

Crypt-Oink is an ambitious game that gets many things right. It’s a digital collectible game with much more playability than most other games in the genre. I like the graphics and the fact that accessories on each Crypton reflect an in-game skill. I also like that everything is nicely explained throughout the game, making it easy to play for both Japanese and non-Japanese DGamers.

The developer team continuously improves the game and is engaged with its community, which has seen continuous growth as a result. The racing component is exciting and makes you want to spend Ethereum on Cryptons and items. While the actual racing might need some technical fine-tuning for slower devices, the gym and the ability to bet on races add depth and extra playability to an already interesting game.

First, we had digital collectible games. Now, we have games where you can use the digital collectibles you bought. This was already the case to a degree with games such as Blockchain Cuties, but never before did the emphasis lie so heavily on the game component itself. That’s what Crypt-Oink does. You buy Cryptons so you can race. The race isn’t an additional component, it’s the centerpiece. And that feels like a logical next step for DGames.

To play Crypt-Oink, you can do so by visiting the Crypto-Oink page in The DGaming Store.