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Stake Wars III: How Everstake Supports Decentralization of Near Protocol

Stake Wars is a program that helps the Near community become familiar with what it means to be a Near validator.

A brief history of Stake Wars

In late 2019, Stake Wars: Episode I was a kind of a stress test for the network. It helped to identify the ways to increase the protocol's stability. 

During Stake Wars: Episode II, the network was onboarding validators to test the delegation system. Everstake participated in that Episode as an early supporter of Near. 

Stake Wars: Episode III allows the community to access the –°hunk-Only Producer mode. It is a more affordable option for users who can't run a Block Producer node. This Episode is focused on testing contract-based delegation for Chunk-Only Producers ahead of this mode's mainnnet release. 

What is a Chuck-Only Producer? 

Near Protocol is designed to scale with sharding. It's of its fundamental differences from other Layer-1 chains. 

Chunk-Only Producers are responsible for producing chunks that are parts of the block from one shard. A shard is just a part of the whole network. That allows Chunk-Only Producers to run a node on a 4-Core CPU with 8GB of RAM and 200 GB of SSD storage.

How to become a Chuck-Only Producer? 

Shardnet is live now. It is a test network created explicitly for Chunk-Only Producers. As a result, this step will help the community to get on board and get familiar with sharding. 

The team will accompany participants at every stage of Episode III. They will prepare test networks with test tokens. It's recommended to follow Near's ethical standards, such as a low-carbon footprint, a focus on the community, excellent service, etc.  

Challenges for the community will be released on GitHub. There will be performance-based incentives after each challenge. 

The following partners will rank participants based on their performance: 

  • MetaPool
  • LiNEAR
  • Everstake
  • OSA

Pagoda will also verify the results. 

At the end of Stake Wars III, participants who solve the challenges will be awarded. Awards may include: 

  • NEAR delegation on mainnet; 
  • NEAR tokens to cover infrastructure costs; 
  • NEAR delegation from Liquid tokens partners on mainnet for a fixed timeframe (12-24 months) to the top Stake Wars participants 
  • A grant from NEAR Foundation.

Note: Remember that winners should be ready to reveal their identities.  

Stake Wars participants will have a lower stake threshold to become a validator from September 2022. 

You can fill in the registration form if you want to become a participant and find more information on the website or on GitHub

How Everstake Supports Decentralization of Near Protocol

Decentralization is one of the core principles of Near Protocol, as it provides a trustless environment where every participant has access to a real-time, shared view of the valid data. Decentralization optimizes resource distribution, resulting in a reliable and consistent experience for developers, validators, and users.

Everstake is committed to supporting decentralization and security of Near as only decentralized blockchains have a future in Web3.

Stake Wars is made in partnership between Everstake, Pagoda, LiNEAR, Meta Pool, and Open Shards Alliance. It gives participants technical challenges and offers all necessary support. 

Everstake, a partner of Stake Wars, helps the validator community grow and offers support for members who want to get a validator seat in the mainnet. 

Everstake and other partners always seek to make Near more decentralized and sustainable. We have deep expertise in the challenges we offer (e.g., setting up a node, implementing operational excellence in running a node, testing network scalability, interacting with the community, etc.).

The challenges will require complex expertise from participants: from a basic level (the fundamentals of running a node) to preparations for validating the mainnet and going Above and Beyond (becoming a valuable validator team player, advanced challenges).

Stake Wars participants can apply for our team's support. 

We recommend monitoring all updates on our social media account as our team prepares challenges, guides, webinars, and other materials, which will be helpful for Chunk-Only Producers candidates.

Recently Everstake proposed a liquid staking solution for Near Protocol as a part of LEGO Initiative. Lido on Near will be a great solution for the ecosystem.

It will allow users to delegate NEAR to Lido on Near Smart Contract and receive liquid NEAR that can be used in DeFi protocols to increase yield. The value of their portion will grow with incoming rewards.

The DAO will choose NEAR validators on Lido. However, setting a certain threshold for joining will be appropriate to ensure security. This will also allow decentralizing assets.  

Expected results

More than 300 participants are expected in the program, and more than 200 will join the mainnet as validators in September 2022, which will be a significant step toward decentralization.

This program aims to educate the community members on how to run a validator and to offer them support to qualify for a seat as mainnet validators.

Stake Wars is full of technical challenges that you are encouraged to solve. Each challenge will help build a community, improve the protocol, find and squash bugs in this network phase, and help new members engage with delegators.

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