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Algorand Metaverse Development

Let's talk about Algorand. It is a decentralized blockchain that solves the scalability, security, and decentralization problems famously termed the blockchain trilemma, using the pure proof-of-stake algorithm. The network was designed to work efficiently in permissionless environments with no restrictions on entry and exit on the network. As a new approach to decentralized public ledgers, Algorand relies on algorithmic randomness to select a set of verifiers that add the next block to the blockchain. The network uses sortition, an old sampling method, to make the process of validator selection transparent yet verifiably free from all kinds of manipulation. Algorand's consensus algorithm is unarguably democratic and fork resistant to a greater extent than most blockchains. The network solved the problem of computational waste, which remains a major issue with proof-of-work-based blockchains like Bitcoin, discouraging the vast majority from participating in the block creation process. Many potential validators on such networks cannot afford the bandwidth requirements to start the process. The cost and nature of these requirements also shut a handful of people out, leading to the centralization of power in supposedly decentralized systems. Finality on proof-of-work blockchains also amounts to ambiguity since participants must wait for some time and block length before a transaction can be considered successful.

Algorand, by contrast, works in a highly adversarial environment, granted that a significant amount of transactions are in the hands of honest participants. To ensure this, the Algorand network schedules message delivery so that honest participants receive transaction messages within a defined time. Nodes on the network also perform a minimal amount of computation, spending a few seconds at most. Blocks on Algorand are generated faster than an assumptive delay function and in such a way that they remain on the blockchain. The network also ensures that no group of persons, such as miners, can have an unfair advantage over others on the network by making the next set of validators provably unpredictable, even though all token holders who hold at least one Algo on their accounts can participate as validators.

Since its creation in 2017, Algorand has enjoyed huge popularity among developers and institutions interested in decentralization yet would love to preserve security and reduce problems with transaction time. One of the areas that have caught the attention of developers and organizations is building a metaverse on the Algorand ecosystem. Not everyone knows about it, but Algorand is a great platform for building a virtual shared world connecting people like in real life using their own avatar and building a social community in a world of limitless possibilities. Now let's explore how to build a metaverse application on Algorand, so do not be intimidated even if it gets a bit technical.

Building a Metaverse on the Algorand Blockchain

The Algorand Foundation is the parent company responsible for the daily management of the blockchain, and since it was founded, the network has recorded huge progress. With the huge support and grants available for developers and projects building on Algorand, we bet the Algorand ecosystem is your next stop if you are looking forward to building a perfect virtual shared world connecting connect with smart contracts and NFT asset transactions. Several project leaders and smart entrepreneurs are already taking advantage of the robust security of this pure proof of stake blockchain. Let's now dive into building our metaverse on Algorand.

Download and Install Google Chrome

You can find the application in the Google application extension store here: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/category/extensions?hl or via the direct link here: https://www.google.com/chrome/.

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Install AlgoSigner Wallet

An Algorand wallet lets you store your address on the Algorand chain and send or receive money on a web extension. You can also use this as a test server offered by the extension so that you do not have to use real Algorand currency while developing and programming. Doing this lets, you see lots of functionalities without using real Algorand currency, which can be expensive.

Create accounts on the extension for hypothetical users on the test servers. Add accounts with their respective names, and save your passphrases. Doing this will help you buy NFTs from one account, simulating the metaverse you are about to create, and send those NFTs or assets to the other account.

Visit the Algorand test dispenser to get testnet Algo, fake currencies you can receive and use at no cost. The dispenser will require you to add an Algorand address. Add both addresses on different occasions and send test Algorand to bother addresses. Before doing that, you will see a screen similar to the one below from where you can add your wallets and send test Algos: https://bank.testnet.algorand.network/ is the website for the test Algorands. The process is complete as soon as you receive a success message and confirm that the balance on your account has increased.

Download and Install Unity

Like video games, installing a game engine is the first step to building a metaverse. In this tutorial, we will be downloading and installing Unity Engine. It is one of the most popular game engines out there, and you can find it at: https://unity3d.com/get-unity/download. After downloading, click on install, agree to the license agreement, and install. Make sure to select the latest version of UNITY.

Click on the profile icon in the Unity application to sign in to the Unity hub. If you do not have an account, create one and move on to create a Unity Project. A new screen like the one shown below will appear, and you can click on new. After that, create a project name for your new project.

Select the 3D Option in Unity

Set the project type to 3D, keeping in mind that even though 2D may be possible and excellent, to achieve the ultra-realistic effect comparable to reality, you need to select 3D. After that, save the project in the appropriate folder, and verify Unity on Mac or any other appropriate device. Here we name our project NFT project. It may request some permissions to access folders then the Unity package manager will open and fetch the modules required for 3D development.

Download the Algorand DLL

To use Unity with a blockchain such as Algorand, we need SDK software, and to do that, you must download the .net DLL of Algorand, which we will now compile, and take all the references and add those inside Unity. You can get the dotnet SDK here https://github.com/RileyGe/dotnet-algorand-sdk or type in "NuGet Algorand" in the Google search bar. Doing that will take you to the download page for the dotnet SDK shown on the screen below. Go to visual studio and sign in or create an account. After opening the visual studio, click the new project button and go to .net to create a console project. Name the console project in .net in your preferred folder.

Once the project is created, import the Algorand DLL via NuGet, as shown on the screen below. You should see the solution explorer, although it may not appear sometimes, so if that does not appear, move your cursor to the left or click on the windows tab at the top of the screen to find the solution explorer. In the explorer, go to packages, right-click, and choose to manage NuGet packages.

Type Algorand in the search bar, select the latest stable version and click on add package. You must do this in Algorand DLL to accept some licenses and dependency DLLs. When you click on packages and Algorand in the solution explorer, you will see the installed dependencies used by Algorand.

Go to build at the top tabs of the application, and click on build all. Right-click on my projects, select reveal the finder to go to the explorer where Algorand DLL files are located. Click on bin in the Algorand DLL folders and select the .DLL and .XML files only. Select all .DLL and.XML files, then go to Unity and select your project.

Add a new folder called plugins in your asset folder. Reveal your plugin folder on Unity in Finder, select NFT project, go to the library, locate the package cache, and find com.unity.nugget.newtonsoft-json@2.0.0. Search and delete all .DLL files in the folder. Go back to Unity, and it will reload. Notice the error when you click on the console. Simply Quit Unity, go back to NFT Hub, and select your NFT project. After it is loaded, go to the console, press play, and see that everything is working as expected. Go back to the package cache, locate the NuGet 1, and delete com.unity.nugget.newtonsoft-json@2.0.0. and go back to your project.

You will often not have Visual Studio files, so you can't launch the project. To regenerate the files go to Unity, select preferences, and go to external tools. Select visual studio for the device you are currently using, select regenerate project file and choose the NFT project solution file. Open the file, and after that, you can check whether everything is installed correctly.

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Checking the Dependencies

Now we will try to see if everything is working. First, we need to create a folder called script, then a C# script called Algorand Test. Double click on the folder, and it should launch the visual studio. If Visual Studio is not launched after this, go back to the instruction on regenerating the Visual Studio solution files. In Visual Studio, check that Algorand is working. As shown below, type the selected command to know if the Algorand DLLs are recognized. Add serialized field and protected AlgodApi instance. Save it, and go back to Unity. Then look in the console and press play.

Now do a simple transaction via code in Visual Studio and send Algo from one account to the test account. In Visual Studio, open the Algorand test, then create a transaction by calling the name of the transaction. Send Algo from test account 1 to Player account 1, the two accounts you have created before using a camel case piece of code: SendAlgoFromTestAccoun1ToPlayerAccountOne(ulong amount). The declare a variable var microAmount = utils.AlgosToMicroAlgos(amount);. Type in the other commands in the following image.

Add microAlgos and ulong, then include the send and receiving account. Add the sender account, then specify the wallet passphrase of both accounts. Remember to set using account = Algorand.Account then make the account receiver a new account and add the passphrase in the highlighted part of the image below. Configure the server that will be used for the transactions using an instance of the server such as the AlgodAPI, then add the host string, the token, and some extra parameters.

Now get the Url-server, and the API token from Purestake. Get the API token and add the token in the provided space in your code. Create the server, add sender and receiver along with the amount, and add the transaction. Sign the transaction, submit the signed transaction, wait for the response from the server, and then you can continue.

Creating Algorand Transactions

Go back to Unity and add the Algorand test script to an empty game object. Create an empty object called AlgorandTest. On the consoles, press play to trigger the start and send 1 Algo from one account to the other. Run the code, and the console will return a success message. You will notice a change in the balance on the sending account.

The next step in the process will be to display and check that our transaction occurred in Unity. Go back to your project and open the AlgorandTest. Add a new method called GetPlayerAccount balance. Create the test server connection by copying as we did in the previous sections to establish the connection. Create the transaction for use with a variable, then add the player's address. You can also go to the Algo Signer extension and click on the three dots on the account to display the account address. Debug, add to string and compile in Unity. Save after adding the player account, then recompile. After that, the press plays, and go to the consoles; then you will get the result which is surprisingly 11 million. Keep in mind that the results in the Algo server are presented in micro Algos. You can add MicroAlgosToAlgos, to convert and get the exact balance. You can also display the player account in Unity using a different method.

Creating Your First Algorand Metaverse NFT Asset

In AlgoTest.cs in solution, create a simple method, CreateNFT(). To access the API server, paste the code which contains the Purstake server API, then use the address straight from the wallet. Go to AlgoSigner and click on the three dots once again.

Set the NFT parameters like the decimals, and add the URL. Check to ensure that the string URL length is 32 bytes which is the maximum metadata length for the Algorand metadata. Set the debug log error message. Set the create asset transaction method and parameters, then add the creation fee.

Set the NFT parameters like the decimals, and add the URL. Check to ensure that the string URL length is 32 bytes which is the maximum metadata length for the Algorand metadata. Set the debug log error message. Set the create asset transaction method and parameters, then add the creation fee.

Create an account to sign the NFT transaction, then paste it into the records. Call the create NFT method by removing the GetAccountBalanace, then go back to Unity, and run to check that there is no error in the console. Make sure to check that the created asset does not exceed 32 bytes. You can copy and paste a 32-byte-long hash to check. Go back to Algo Signer in Chrome, and the UNI NFT 1 has been created.

You can access your AlgoSigner wallet to check your NFT, as displayed in the image below. Now try to send the NFT asset from one user to another user. To avoid spamming, code an opt-in function in Visual studio. Connect to the Algorand API server, then get the ID of the NFT asset. You can always find the ID in the test account on Algo signer. Get the player's account that will opt-in and put it all in the server. With the transaction parameter, process the transaction declaring a variable equals Utils and get the asset.

Get the transaction parameters, add a string message, sign the transaction and submit the signed tx on the server, then wait for the transaction instance with the exact ID to be complete.

Display the transaction information in the Debug, then ask for the pending transaction information, which you can then log in to the NFT. Verify the transaction inside of Unity, and go back to Algo signer, check, run and play in the Unity Console. Please do not run it on the main thread. Now, double-check to see that you have opted-in on Algosigner.

Receive NFT From Test Account and Send to Player Account

Create an asset transfer method in the Algorand studio. Get the Algo API Server and the NFT asset ID. Then paste the passphrase of the account that will receive the NFT. Then add the player account, then set the sender and receiver account. Create the transaction using Utils.GetAssetTransactions(). Define the amount and other parameters, so there is no error in your code. Add the pending transaction information and the ID double-check that the transfer NFT is getting called, then press play in Unity. Now check the account to confirm that the transfer is successful.

Transferring an NFT From One Wallet To Another

Now that we have transferred an NFT from one person to another person. We need to see how we can ensure that the sender of the NFT can receive some tokens in return. Technically, this is called an atomic transaction. It prevents malicious attacks and a situation where the NFT receiver shuts down the transaction and prevents the funds from going to the owner of the NFT. Atomic transactions are grouped transactions allowing every transaction participant to get the amount due. In the Algorand studio, create transactions and group them together, as shown below. Paste the code for the NFT transfer created earlier, then sign both NFT transactions.

Add try and catch, then debug to check that there is no transaction error. Encode the message pack, adding the first and the second transaction. Send the transaction as a raw transaction and the ID as an array. Check your AlgoSigner wallet to conform to the NFTs and Algo balance transfer.

More Advanced Programming and the Algorand Metaverse Setup

If you have followed through with this article up to this point, we hope you were not bored by the codes and technical stuff. The next step in building a virtual shared world connecting participants in the Algorand ecosystem involves more advanced programming. We will now talk about that but in less detail. Feel free to contact us if you need to build an entire metaverse, including your own avatar using smart contracts on the Algorand blockchain. Also, remember that the Algorand Foundation is working globally to support developers and companies building apps and metaverse on Algorand. It is, therefore, a great incentive to develop your next app and metaverse on Algorand, the blockchain for the future.

Returning to the building, the next step is creating a singleton. After that, you must create an Algorand account scriptable object with an action menu item. Next, implement Algorand account logic, and create 2 Algo accounts for main players. Next, implement the server, and add the Algorand server object utility. Implement the NFT asset scriptable object, then add the code to generate the NFT asset. Instantiate the game currency NFT asset token, GEMCOIN, then program the Algo manager. Write up the transactions to trade tokens, then code the game currency balance validations. Build the NFT store user interface, and add NFTs to the store. Then make some performance improvements, and set up the game server and game server to Unity interaction. Congratulations! You have built your first metaverse on Algorand.

Work With Us At Rejolut to Build Your Algorand Metaverse

Our metaverse experts at Rejolut have decades of experience writing codes and building entire decentralized virtual worlds on multiple blockchains. Algorand is a comparably secure blockchain, and we are highly skilled at building our own avatar, data, logic, and other developer-specific possibilities in the virtual metaverse. We deliver excellent solutions always, and our team walks businesses and entrepreneurs through the process of decentralized application development from the conception to the maintenance and upgrade stages which we can ideally help with. Through our years of hard work, we are now known for writing error-free codes and building some of the best-decentralized applications. We have also built various functionalities for the best blockchain brands. If you need to build a metaverse on Algorand today, stop here and send a message.

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