Races take place in hippodromes and up to 12 horses can enter each race. A race must have a minimum of 6 entries to go ahead. Horse owners are able to join a race by paying a $ZERC fee determined by the hippodrome owners. These entry fees make up the race’s prize pool. Hippodrome owners may also restrict entry by criteria such as horse tier or even create invite-only races.

At the end of a race, the top three horses are awarded a split of the $DERC price pool which is automatically transferred to their wallets. Winning depends on your horse’s hidden attributes which will be explored in detail below, but an element of randomization is also included in the picking of winners. An integration with Chainlink’s VRF technology is used to add randomisation into the race calculations. The randomisation means that even the slowest horse still has a chance of winning a race, and high-performing horses can have a bad race too.

Which factors influence your chance of winning?

A number of different factors influence which horse can win a race:

  • The horse’s hidden speed & stamina attributes
  • The horse’s reaction time at the starting gate
  • Choosing the correct hippodrome surface and distance for your horse

As the game is developed further, this will be expanded to include:

  • Performance-enhancing NFTs
  • Jockey NFTs
  • Hippodrome weather conditions

Hidden attributes

  • Reaction time determines how quickly your horse leaves the starting gate.
  • Speed determines the maximum potential speed your horse can reach. Horses have different speed values for different surface types.
  • Stamina determines for how long your horse can sustain a specific speed. Horses have the same value for all surfaces but it works differently on different surfaces. For example, stamina is depleted faster on the dirt surface.

These attributes are all hidden and you must speculate on their values through racing. Recording race data will help you achieve this. These attributes play a part in deciding if your horse will win, but randomisation also comes into play. Don’t be surprised if your horse places last after you just won first place on the same distance and surface the race before!

Hippodrome length and surface

Hippodromes come in a range of different lengths and surfaces such as dirt, sand, turf or synthetic. Your horse will have at least one preferred surface on which it performs better. You can figure this out from racing on all surface types and recording your race data. Your horse’s preferred distances will depend on your hidden attributes. You’re more likely to win on shorter distances if you have a fast reaction time, and more likely to win at longer distances with high stamina.

Race mechanics

In a race, each horse gets a number of “dice roll” calculations which are used with your hidden attributes as modifiers. These dice rolls determine whether your horse speeds up or slows down etc.

Each furlong in a race is split into 10 dice rolls, so a 2-furlong race has a total of 20 dice rolls and an 11-furlong race has 110 total dice rolls.

Horses are also programmed to be competitive so that those who are lagging behind will get a boost as they try to catch up. A horse in the lead will also get a boost as horses behind get closer, so as to attempt to maintain the lead. #

Each horse has a stamina value between 50 and 100. When the horse is racing it depends on its speed and stamina attributes. Stamina gradually decreases with each 10th of a furlong or “dice roll”. Once a horse’s stamina is depleted the horse runs purely on its speed, which starts decreasing due to the loss of stamina. Stamina is depleted at different races on different surfaces.

Future enhancements

Performance boosting assets

Performance boosting assets will be introduced later on in the game. These will boost a horse’s speed and or stamina and you’ll be able to choose how to equip your horse to ensure its best performance.

Horse level

A level system will also be introduced based on a horses race activity. This will most likely be used for race restrictions to ensure that high-performing horses are not racing against those who are just having their first few races.

Racing guide