These are dark days for the Chia Fork ecosystem, I think. The month leading up to the release of Chia 1.2.0 and the launch of the on-chain pools have been a huge swing for the Chia Forks from being full front-of-mind for a lot of Chia farmers to moving to the back, forgotten in the face of NFT replotting.
First the golden age, when Chaingreen, Spare and Flax first launched. This was when everyone and their farm was getting into the forks. We were writing articles on how to stay safe, with multiple forks running against the same set of keys. There was a lot of debate over whether or not they would be worth anything. There were big issues. Only Flax really worked off the bat.
Then came the explosion, with more forks coming than anyone could predict. We had our ChiaDoges and DogeChias. We had our ChiaRose and our Silicoin, and our Flora. The scummy ones started to pop up and that’s when I stopped installing new forks. But Flax was still Flax, and some additional ecosystems were still popping up including the Chia Fork Traders discord where there was some real “value” associated to these coins.
Just looking at the search analytics for my site you can tell that there was a ton of excitement about two things during this time: Chia Forks and the Mad Max Plotter. But in the month since, that excitement has died down. NFT plots have come out and folks are busy replotting and joining pools. But what does this mean for the forks?
Well, right now my understanding is that while the forks might “support” using NFT plots because they do not have a pool public key if an NFT plot hits a reward 1/8 of the reward is delivered to the farmer while 7/8, the pool portion, are lost. This is pretty hard to swallow and means farmers like me are probably not bothering.
So until a fork develops a mechanism to read NFTs off the Chia blockchain directly and deliver rewards, or comes up with an another mechanism to use the portable plots fully, I just don’t see a lot of new users going to the forks. I have spoken to farmers who are keeping their OG plots either on one of the off-chain pools (FoxyPool-OG and CorePool mostly) and these farmers are still checking out the forks. But not at the same rate. The thrill and excitement have died down some.
I really don’t see how, until that problem is solved and forks are able to use “modern” Chia plots, the forks will entice a significant userbase to come over. If anyone has any suggestions please put them in the comments, and if anyone does know of any forks solving this problem please reach out. I have already had one tell me they have a possible solution, and I will be looking into that shortly.