Vertcoin is an ASICs resistant proof of work blockchain. Centralised mining makes it possible for malicious nodes to attack networks for their own economic gain. The 4 largest mining pools, in 2018, control over 51% of the hashing power. This is the problem that Vertcoin are trying to solve. Their solution is a simple one. Make it easier to mine Vertcoin on a cheap GPU that an expensive ASICs. Beyond decentralisation, Vertcoin appeals to the crypto purist in all of us. Isn’t it just incredible, that with a moderately powerful computer, anyone on earth can put computational resources into the network and pull money out?
What is Vertcoin?
Vertcoin is a true cryptocurrency. Like Bitcoin and Litecoin, Vertcoin was built to act as a currency and be sent to exchange wealth and value. In January of 2014, the genesis block was mined implementing the Lyra2RE hashing procedure. Vertcoin leveraged industry proven hashing algorithms to create an enduring chained algorithm that favours GPU miners. On the Bitcoin network, large ASICs farms control over 50% of the network’s hashing power. Centralisation leaves the network vulnerable to attack and contradicts the ethos of the blockchain.
Vertcoin has focused on keeping ASICs out of the network.
The Mining Experience
Vertcoin is a stream of passive mining income for anyone who wants it. With a powerful gaming computer, or a home built mining rig, you can pull out between 1 – 6 VTC a day. The ASICs resistance guarantees the existence of these artificial conditions. The currency can be forked at any time. In the future, if ASICs ever were developed for Lyra2RE, we would simply have to fork to a higher memory requirement and those ASICs would no longer properly function 
To avoid mining centralisation, the currency has proactively forked in anticipation of treats twice. First, on December 13, 2014 (block 208301), Vertcoin forked from Scrypt-Adaptive-N proof-of-work function to Lyra2RE as a proactive defense against emerging Scrypt-Adaptive-N capable ASICs. On August 10, 2015 (block 347000), Vertcoin forked from Lyra2RE to Lyra2REv2 because a botnet was controlling more than 50% of the hashing power of Vertcoin network.
Bitcoin, and most other proof of work cryptocurrencies, was first mined with CPUs than GPUs and finally ASICs. Anyone, from a Ugandan village, to a casual gamer can compete for blocks on this network. There are mining pools that anyone can join and Vertcoin even has a one-click-miner feature. More than one click is required, but it is no more difficult than installing a game or application on your PC or Mac.
I didn’t set up mining on my laptop because my hash rate would be embarrassing. This guy, MrSotko CryptoCurrency did. If you want to know how to mine Vertcoin, watch this YouTube tutorial.
There are lots of resources for staying up to date with Vertcoin and its development. The Vertcoin Whitepaper is probably where any serious research into Vertcoin should being. It outlines the team’s vision and what they have planned for the cryptocurrency. The Reddit FAQ, answers questions about the cryptocurrency. Most of the developer communication is done through the Discord chat platform and a YouTube channel has video explanations and frequent updates for Vertcoin investors.
Why Choose Vertcoin Over Bitcoin?
If you are of the sensible opinion that sort of centralised mining isn’t really a problem, you might be wondering if Vertcoin offers any advantages over Bitcoin? Turns out it does. VTC has a blocktime of 2.5 minutes. This makes the cryptocurrency about the same speed as Litecoin. The Vertcoin network isn’t as congested, so it’s faster and cheaper than sending transactions on Bitcoin.
Vertcoin also has a partnership with Litecoin to share the Lightning network
Increasing the memory requirement means that any potential ASIC device would have to physically be designed with more memory for each thread. In the future, if ASICs ever were developed for Lyra2RE, we would simply have to fork to a higher memory requirement and those ASICs would no longer properly function 
Should I Invest in Vertcoin?
Vertcoin was the second cryptocurrency to achieve SegWit and lightning network transactions. They also have a partnership with Litecoin to set up atomic swaps in the future.
“Atomic swaps, or atomic cross-chain trading, is the exchange of one cryptocurrency to another cryptocurrency, without the need to trust a third-party. A relatively new piece of technology, atomic cross-chain trading is looking to revolutionise the way in which users transact with each other.” There are large transaction volumes on the Litecoin network. Seamless conversion of Vertcoins to Litecoins would make it easier for miners to cash out. Their Litecoin partnership is making what was otherwise a novel coin for miners into one of the most advanced POW cryptocurrencies.
Another reason to invest in Vertcoin is the currency is opening up to AMD mining. Currently, the default Vertcoin miner works much better on NVIDIA cards than it does on AMD cards. Because of this, it is currently not very profitable to mine VTC on an AMD card. The very ideology of Vertcoin is that it can be mined by anyone to build the ultimate decentralised indiscriminate network.
To fix this, a community raised over 10k worth of VTC for the development of “nextminer” It is still being developed. If you want to see how they are progressing, the team leaves frequent updates about its progress on Reddit and in the Discord groups.
Mkxminer was developed independent of this community fund. It optimises Vertcoin mining for AMD cards. Mkxminer might not be as polished as the team’s released one click miner but it gives AMD miners something to use until something better comes along.
Who Are The Vertcoin Team?
Vertcoin is an open source project that anyone can contribute to if their changes are added by a team developer. The Vertcoin team currently has 6 developers working on the project full time. The public face of Vertcoin is James Lovejoy, an undergraduate researcher at MIT’s Digital Currency Initiative, which is the program behind the Lighting Network.
Other devs include
Through various social media and blogging platform, mostly Reddit and Medium, and the Discord group, they manage to keep the community updated. A great example of this is the interactive roadmap on trello.
If you are looking for more info about the team, a good place to start is their website, here.