The internet is weird, and the new website called Hamsters.gg, which had a hushed launched last week proves it. The site claims to host the “world’s first live-streamed hamster race.”
Since its launch, the platform has rapidly attracted a dedicated group of crypto gamblers eager to bet on a fleet of race hamsters with catchy names like “Popcorn,” “Buster,” and “Sparky.”
At semi-regular intervals, four hamsters at a time are placed into custom-engineered racing straightaways equipped with automated starting stall doors.
Crypto gamblers with connected wallets can then wager any sum of Binance USD (BUSD) stablecoin on their preferred race hamster. When the stall doors lift, the foot-long race track comes alive, accompanied by a soothing bossa nova elevator music soundtrack.
Winning bettors get to share the pool of bets, while 5% of all bets go to the house.
While the allure of striking it rich may seem compelling, there’s one tiny snag—the races aren’t broadcast live as they appear. Instead, the team of three developers and rodent wranglers behind Hamsters.gg pre-records the races.
According to the platform’s pseudonymous core developer, Dani, this precaution is taken to prevent the possibility of capturing a hamster’s unfortunate demise during the race or a race that continues indefinitely if the hamsters decide not to budge.
This time around, Dani incorporated tokenomics into the platform, introducing a HAMS token that rewards holders with a share of the house’s cut from losing bets. Dani and his team currently care for a total of nine hamsters, maintaining that they are “well treated.”
Regarding questions about the site’s legality, Dani claims to have no concerns, stating confidently that they will ensure full compliance. However, it’s essential to recognize that in many countries, including the United States, operating or participating in an unlicensed gambling operation is illegal.
Despite lingering legal questions, the Hamsters.gg community continues to grow rapidly, boasting 2,384 members (and counting) in its Telegram channel. On Twitter, the site has already captured substantial attention since breaking through the noise.
And to those bold individuals who have already staked their hard-earned crypto on this allegedly novel performance sport, the thrill of hamster racing appears to be utterly gripping.