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I am currently designing a blockchain based web game, and part of the game is to display data from the blockchain in table format on the site. The data will be updated peroidically, or in short intervals.

For example, the table will say for btc address A there have been x transactions sent for a total of y btc. For btc address B etc etc

My query is whether you think I shoukd be running these queries to build a website database using an api call, or running my own copy of the blockchain on the web server.

Thanks for any advice.

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Use a third-party API if the correctness or accuracy of the data is not important. When the financial data needs to be accurate, using a third-party API is slightly more dangerous because as an intermediary they can return whatever (possibly tainted) data to your service... selectively.

Naturally, weigh this against the costs of maintaining an active bitcoind node such as upgrades, sysadmin maintenance, security, etc. There may also be an option regarding simple payment verification if you do not require the entire blockchain.

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