Gary’s Vee Friends NFTs Explained (Read Before Buying)

VeeFriends is an NFT project built on the Ethereum blockchain by Gary Vee. The collection consists of two series and was created to help Gary Vee give back to his community. 

The first series was released in May 2021 and included 10,255 NFTs and 268 characters, 1242 of which were held by Gary Vee. 

The second series was released in April 2022 and included 251 characters and 55,555 tokens. This series was released alongside VeeFriends Mini Drops and Book Games NFT projects.

This article will cover what VeeFriends are, how they work, who created them, how you can buy and what VeeFriends season two brings to the table. 

What is VeeFriends?

VeeFriends is an NFT collection created by Gary Vee. The series one collection is based on 268 characters hand-drawn by Gary, each of which was inspired by human traits he admires. 

The original collection consisted of 10,255 NFTs; however, 12% of the supply was held by Gary Vee and is referred to as G.O.O. (Gary Originally Owned). 

The NFTs take the appearance of cartoon animals, bugs, and unique characters, each with different backgrounds and features. These are then divided into three categories: access, gift, and admission, each of which gives holders different benefits.

Access tokens provide direct access to Gary Vee or other holders.

Gift tokens offer unique experiences created by Gary Vee and his team. 

Admission tokens provide holders a three-year access pass to VeeCon and are the most common in the collection. 

As of October 2022, the highest-selling VeeFriend was a Watchful and Attentive Embarking Ape, which sold for 105 ETH (around $333,807) to Wu-Tang Clan. The project currently has a market cap of $133.5 million and a floor price of 4.96 ETH. 

How Does VeeFriends Work?

VeeFriends series one consists of 10,255 tokens, categorized by access tokens, gift tokens, and admission tokens. Here’s how they work. 

Access Tokens

Access tokens are broken up into four categories: one-to-one- group, competition, and scholarship. Ninety of these tokens offer in-person access, and 210 offer virtual access. 

There are 165 group access tokens, where investors can spend time with GaryVee or other VeeFriends holders. These tokens include: 

  • Ten Breakfast Bat tokens for in-person access
  • Ten Lunch Lady Bug tokens for in-person access
  • Ten Dinner Deer tokens for in-person access
  • Ten Brunch Bear tokens for in-person access
  • 125 Hangout Hawks tokens for virtual access

There are 108 one-on-one access tokens, each offering a unique experience. For example, courtside seats at sporting events, a wine shopping experience, and other one-to-one experiences with GaryVee. Other tokens include FaceTime calls with Gary; five tokens give holders access to events where GaryVee is a speaker. 

There are 22 competition tokens, allowing holders to compete with GaryVee in a pre-chosen game. Games include basketball, chess, bowling, and more. 

There are five Sorcerer Scholarship tokens, which investors must apply for to be accepted. If accepted, holders will receive mentorship from Gary Vaynerchuk.

Gift Tokens

Out of the 10,255 VeeFriends tokens, 555 are Gift Goat tokens. These tokens give holders three years of access to VeeCon. They’ll also receive a minimum of six physical gifts annually for three years. Each Gift Goat was hand drawn by Gary and can be verified on VeeFriends.com.  

Admission Tokens

Admission tokens make up the largest percentage of VeeFriends, with 9,400 tokens in total. Each character has 40 tokens with different rarity levels, the rarest of which is “Epic,” of which only two exist for each character. Other levels include very rare, rare, limited, and core levels. 

The tokens come with a three-year access pass to VeeCon.

There are forty tokens in differing rarity levels and a total of 9,400 tokens, making this category the largest within the VeeFriends NFT universe. The rarest category is “Spectaculars,” of which only one token exists. “Epic,” the next rarest, as only two.

Additional categories include very rare, rare, limited, and core levels that gradually increase in numbers. 

Who Created VeeFriends?

VeeFriends was created by Gary Vaynerchuk (GaryVee,) a serial entrepreneur and content pioneer. Vaynerchuk is the chairman of VaynerX, CEO of VaynerMedia, VaynerSports, and four-time New York Times bestselling author. He has an estimated net worth of $200 million. 

Gary was one of the first entrepreneurs to realize the potential of cryptocurrency and NFTs, first acknowledging the trend in 2014. He’s since launched VeeFriends and VaynerNFT, a project designed to help brands create their own NFT collections.  

VeeFriends was created by Gary to help pioneer the future of NFTs, with Gary stating that NFTs will change the way we interact online. 

VeeFriends Series 2 NFTs

VeeFriends Series 2 was released in April 2022 and included 55,555 tokens which originally sold for 0.33 ETH ($995.) Holders of Series 1 NFTs had the opportunity to claim a Series 2 for free, claiming the same character they already own. 

As the collection has more NFTs, GaryVee launched the collection at a lower price than the first to give more people opportunities to buy. The floor price for Series 1 is 5.96 ETH, pricing many investors out of the collection. 

The project was released in four mint periods throughout April:

Friends List (32,000 Supply) | 4/18/22

Series 1 Free Claim (10,255 Supply) | 4/18/22

Public Mint (10,000 Supply) | Date: 4/25/22

15 New Characters (3,300 Supply) | Date: 4/27/22

After release, many VeeFriends increased in value, for example, Adaptable Alien #13905, which sold for 42 ETH. This one-of-a-kind NFT featured an alien character with a Glitch Emerald background. 

How to Buy VeeFriends 

You can buy VeeFriends on several NFT platforms, including Bybit and OpenSea. 

To buy, open your platform of choice and connect your cryptocurrency wallet (MetaMask is a good option for this.) 

Make sure your wallet has the correct amount of ETH to complete the transaction and place a bid on an NFT or “Buy Now” to receive it instantly. Before you buy, check the transaction fees to ensure you have enough ETH to cover the whole transaction. 

Final Thoughts: Are VeeFriends A Good Investment?

Regarding utility, VeeFriends are one of the most valuable NFTs on the market. With each NFT, you’re guaranteed at least one benefit, from FaceTime calls with Gary himself to tickets to sports games. 

Series 1 of VeeFriends has continued to increase in value since its release, making them a good investment for all investors, even if they’re not interested in cashing in on their reward. Series 2 hasn’t seen the dramatic rise in value that the first collection had; nonetheless, the project has maintained its value and sold out, suggesting its value could increase in the future. 

However, VeeFriends aren’t necessarily for everyone. If having a chat with GaryVee isn’t your thing, other collections, such as CryptoPunks, offer great investments without the same utility. 

Over the next few years, NFTs with unused benefits will likely continue to rise in value as their number continues to decrease. Therefore holding an NFT with a redeemable reward may be a good investment. 

Can You Copy an NFT Onto a Different Blockchain?

Things can get a bit complicated when simply “copying” an NFT from one blockchain to another.

As a refresher, a blockchain is a decentralized collection of financial accounts across a peer-to-peer network. It’s used to confirm transactions without needing a central governing body, allowing users to make transactions without a third party. 

NFTs (non-fungible tokens) are unique cryptographic tokens that exist on a blockchain and cannot be replicated. They come in the form of NFT art, music, in-game collectibles, and much more. 

Although someone can duplicate an image of an NFT, the code confirms the actual ownership of an NFT. Think of NFTs like a piece of art in a museum. Although the art can be replicated, the museum holds the official ownership rights of the original piece. 

Currently, the NFT market is dominated by Ethereum, with 95% of NFTs being on the Ethereum blockchain. However, many collectors are fed up with high fees and slow transaction times on Ethereum. 

As a result, alternatives such as Solana and Polygon are now becoming popular alternatives for collectors, with investors using bridge technology to transfer their NFTs from one blockchain to another. 

This article will look at how NFT ownership works, how to transfer an NFT onto a different blockchain, and how to use the ​​Polygon Bridge to transfer your NFTs. 

How Does NFT Ownership Work?

When buying an NFT, you acquire a token on the blockchain. You might experience this NFT as a picture of a monkey or something, but in essence, you own a string of programming. This token is unique and represents a particular asset. For example, if you purchased an NFT on OpenSea, you’d own a code that shows you own that particular asset. 

Once you own an NFT, you can use it commercially, for example, printing the art on a shirt or using the design in a video. However, this doesn’t stop other users from saving your image, with saving an image becoming a meme since 2021. 

Not all NFTs give you copyright and intellectual property rights, so checking the details before buying is important. 

How Do NFT Transfers Work?

Originally an NFT would stay on the blockchain it was purchased on. However, a new technology known as a blockchain bridge lets you transfer an NFT from one blockchain to another. 

A blockchain bridge, also known simply as a bridge, is software that lets collectors move NFT across blockchains. These third-party programs actively monitor blockchains to ensure a smooth transaction. 

For example, one such platform, NFTrade lets you move NFTs from one blockchain to another, with six blockchain networks to choose from. 

To start, set up an account and connect your wallet. 

Click My NFTs and choose the NFT you want to move from one blockchain to another. 

On the top right corner of the NFT page, click the three dots and select the new wallet you want to send the NFT to. 

Click Transfer NFT and verify the transaction to complete. You can then disconnect your wallet from NFT trade, and the selected wallet will now own the NFT. 

Another way to transfer NFTs across blockchains is through the Polygon Bridge. 

What is the Polygon Bridge?

Polygon Bridge is a cross-chain bridge between Polygon (formally Matic) and Ethereum that lets users transfer NFTs from Ethereum to the Polygon blockchain. Users can transfer all ERC tokens through a dual consensus procedure using this two-way bridge. This procedure uses a Plasma bridge and Proof-of-Stake bridge to complete the transaction and remain decentralized. 

How Does The Polygon Bridge Work?

When using the Polygon Bridge, no new tokens are created. Instead, tokens leaving a particular network are locked and minted through another network. The new token is then created, and the old one is burned. 

Here’s how you can use the bridge:

  1. Connect your crypto wallet (such as MetaMask) to the Polygon Web Wallet
  1. Sign your wallet through the extension
  1. You’ll be taken to the Polygon Bridge interface. Here you can choose your token (supported tokens include MATIC, ETH, ERC20, ERC721, ERC1155, and several others.)
  1. You’ll be charged a fee for this process which will change based on Ethereum traffic.
  1. If you want to transfer your NFTs back to their old blockchain, click “Withdraw” and choose the tokens you want to return to their old blockchain. 
  1. Once the transaction has been validated, your NFTs will be available to claim in your crypto wallet. 

Alternatively, you can also use the Plasma Bridge to transfer Polygon NFTs and transfer them to ETH, ERC20, or ERC721 tokens. Here’s how:

  1. Open MetaMask and click “Switch to Polygon.”
  1. Your Polygon details will show the Polygon network’s details.
  1. From here, head to the Polygon Bridge, click “Withdraw,” and repeat the process above. 

Three transactions will need to be validated when completing a transfer on the Plasma Bridge. 

The first is to withdraw an NFT from your Polygon Wallet. 

The second starts a 7-day challenge period, where an individual can challenge the transaction (this is for additional security.)

The third is to confirm sending your NFT to the wallet. 

Overall this process is more secure; however not as fast as the normal Polygon Bridge. 

However, some NFT holders may be a bit unsettled by the fact that their original NFT token is “burned” in order to create a new one.

Why Would You Copy An NFT Onto A Different Blockchain?

Although Ethereum dominates the NFT market, it’s far from perfect. One of the biggest issues with Ethereum is the transaction fees. Fees are extremely high, starting at $50-100+ per transaction, which is significantly higher than any other blockchain. 

In addition to this, the fees themselves can fluctuate dramatically. One day you may pay $50 for a transaction; the next, you could be paying over $150. This frustrates NFT collectors trying to budget or profit from their investments. 

Alternative blockchains such as Solana and Polygon have significantly lower fees. For example, the average cost of Minting an NFT in Solana is just 0.00001 SOL ($0.01.) Consequently, Solana and Polygon NFTs are growing in popularity, as shown by the growth in sales. Solana NFT sales volume hit an all-time high in the week ending Sept. 12, hitting almost $50 million (1.5 million SOL.)

Final Thoughts: Is Changing Blockchain Worth The Hassle?

As blockchain technology advances, so will the number of ways you can move an NFT onto a different blockchain. Currently, platforms such as NFTrade and Polygon Bridge are great ways to change blockchain. However, they can appear a little complicated for new investors. 

So, is changing blockchain the best option for you?

This will depend entirely on your reason for buying an NFT.

Changing the blockchain may not be worth the hassle if you’ve purchased an NFT to hold it for the long term. Instead, holding your NFT in its current wallet would be better, and hoping the value increases. 

However, if you frequently trade NFTs, then changing blockchain could help save you some money on network fees. It would also help speed up your transactions, letting you make more daily transactions. 

Before making a decision, make sure you do your research to understand the transfer process and avoid unnecessary fees. 

How and Where to Buy NFTs: A Beginner’s Guide

Few predicted NFTs would suddenly become the talk of the town in 2021 when they were first introduced in 2014. Reports show that NFT trading volume was around $10 million in Q3 2021, a massive 704% increase from the previous quarter. This was just the start.

To many, NFTs add a visually appealing and creative element to the crypto world often perceived as excessively techy and complicated. 

Afterimage, audio, and video NFTs too hold, with NFT shards on their way, crypto investors are scrambling to jump on the fast-moving NFT bandwagon in time. 

If you wish to become an NFT investor, this article will explain the steps of how to buy an NFT and where to buy them, introducing you to the most popular marketplaces.

Where to Buy NFTs

There are different marketplaces to buy different types of NFTs and each levy a specific fee for transacting on their platform, so you should aim to choose a cost-effective platform for buying your NFTs.

OpenSea

OpenSea, established in 2017 by Alex Atallah and Devin Finzer, is the biggest marketplace to buy, sell, and trade different types of NFTs across marketplaces and Blockchains. The company is based in North America and has its headquarters in New York City.

The platform hosts around 30 million NFTs on Ethereum, Polygon, and Klaytn blockchains. Apart from providing a platform to trade in NFTs, Open Sea aims to provide an integrated marketplace where developers can build and launch their NFTs. It supports Ether and around 150 other crypto tokens. 

So you can use the OpenSea marketplace for buying a range of NFTs such as art, game NFTs, sports and music NFTs, utility NFTs such as keys to own gaming collectibles or gaming DAOs, enter particular Discord communities, and so on.

Binance NFT

Binance is a crypto exchange as well as a popular NFT marketplace. It was established as a crypto exchange in 2017 by Changpeng Zhao and was based in China. Later, the company headquarters moved to the Cayman Islands.

People can buy, mint, and trade NFTs with the Binance NFT marketplace. It hosts some top NFT creators such as X-Metaverse, Big Time Studios, NFT_Pride, NFKings, and Seek Tiger. You can access different NFT collections such as Mafia Land NFTs, DinoX World Avatars, GiiiO role NFT, X-Metaverse Box, and Atlantis Metaverse Genesis NFT. Binance NFT also hosts features such as the mystery box feature from time to time where players get a chance to win rare and unique NFTs.

Aside from Gaming NFTs, the platform also offers NFTs from categories like Art, Sports, Entertainment, Collectibles, E-sports, and Premium NFTs.

Foundation

The Foundation marketplace brings creators and collectors together on a platform to build and trade NFTs. It was established in February 2021 and is owned by Kayvon Tehranian hailing from San Francisco, California. Through Foundation, collectors can mint our buy images, video, and 3D artwork. A creator can create an art NFT on Foundation only through an invitation received by another creator, unlike other NFT platforms.

Rarible

Rarible was founded by Moscow-based Alexei Falin and Alex Salnikov in 2019.  It is headquartered in Delaware, United States. It hosts NFTs on Ethereum, Polygon, Tezos, and Flow blockchain and features a massive NFT collection ranging from art, photography, games, metaverse, music, domains, DeFi, Memes, Punks, NSFW, etc. 

The software-giant Adobe partnered with Rarible in Dec 2021 to display content credentials of the listed NFTs to make it easy to protect and verify digital content.

SuperRare

This NFT marketplace was launched in 2018, where NFT lovers can collect and trade mainly art-oriented NFTs. 

The platform introduced its token in 2021 when the artists and collectors in the community formed their DAO. Some of the prominent investors at SuperRare include Mark Cuban, Ashton Kutcher, and Samsung Next. The company is owned by John Crain, Johnathan Perkins, and Charles Crain and is based in the United States.

Project Specific Marketplaces

You can also buy specific NFT assets from their respective marketplaces. For example, NBA Top Shot is the marketplace to purchase official GIFs from the National Basketball Association. There is also an NFL All Day market for limited-edition NFL moments. Music lovers can visit the Musician Marketplace to buy NFTs of music compositions and platforms like Async Art, explicitly meant for programmable art. 

There are dedicated marketplaces for particular NFT-based game items, such as Axie Marketplace for items used in the popular ‘Axie Infinity’ game. It also has its own token, and the users should have these tokens to buy things from the Axie Marketplace. Mintable is another platform for unique music, art, games, animation, and media collectibles.

SolSea, another marketplace on Solana, lets creators mint NFTs with embedded licenses and display the Rarity Rank of the NFTs listed. 

Other NFT marketplaces include Nifty Gateway, Thetadrop, etc. NFTs on the Rarible and SuperRare marketplace is also available on OpenSea.

Let us now move on to the steps to buy an NFT.

How to Buy NFTs

  1. Buy Crypto Tokens from a CeFi or DeFi Exchange and Add Funds in the Crypto Wallet

First, you need to have the crypto tokens to possess your desired collectibles. You should buy the tokens supported in the NFT marketplace from where you wish to buy NFTs. Some marketplaces have their own tokens to transact. You can purchase these tokens from any DeFi exchange such as Coinbase, Binance, Gemini, etc. 

Once purchased, you should send the tokens to your wallet, like the Metamask wallet, to be able to use them for the purchase. You can check here if you want to learn how to set up the metamask wallet. Remember to have sufficient units of the crypto token in your wallet to pay for the NFT and the Gas fees involved in the transaction; the Gas fee is the transaction charge for the computation effort involved in facilitating transactions on the Ethereum Blockchain. Gas fees vary according to the traffic on the network. 

  1. Open the Marketplace

You can now open your chosen NFT marketplace and register on it. You will then scroll through the different types of NFTs offered. You can filter through the various collections offered to hunt for the NFT you wish to possess.

  1. Place Your Bid

You will find items under ‘Auction,’ where you can bid the price you wish to pay, or you can buy the item directly. NFT sellers auctioning items provide the Auction time, the previous selling price, and the cryptocurrency they are accepting from the buyers on the marketplace.

  1. Payment

Link your wallet to the marketplace using the ‘Connect Wallet’ button to proceed with the purchase. Once the transaction is successful, you will see the amount deducted and find the NFT stored in your wallet. You can also store your NFTs on offline hardware wallets such as Trezor or Ledger.

The NFT value is generally determined by markets, with floor prices naturally setting the bottom-end range. Other factors could be the uniqueness and the artist’s reputation.

Final Thoughts: Keep Your NFTs Safe! 

This should be about everything that you need to know for you to be able to buy an NFT. One last word of advice: if you are an NFT enthusiast and wish to mint and trade NFTs, you should be careful of NFT scams that can make you lose your crypto funds and NFTs through phishing attacks on your crypto wallets. 

Keep in mind NFTs and cryptocurrency is very new and they can be volatile– you should never invest more than you can afford to lose in a volatile market such as NFTs.

Layer-1 vs. Layer-2 Blockchains: What You Must Know

Bitcoin did the heavy lifting of creating a peer-to-peer decentralized and tokenized financial network. One person can send another person halfway around the world $1,000,000 in BTC for a paltry $20, sometimes even as low as a dollar and change. 

The problem is that microtransactions, such as sending a friend $4 for a cup of coffee, cost the same. 

Similarly, Ethereum created an entire galaxy of possibilities for DeFi, NFTs, and other decentralized applications. However, the breadth of its value has also been one of its detractions– as network gas fees skyrocket in times of extremely high traffic, making using the network ludicrously expensive for users and developers alike. 

CryptoKitties, an early sensational NFT game, nearly ground Ethereum’s network activity to a halt in 2018 due to the throng of transactions. Even today, gas fees can be hundreds or thousands of dollars to mint a new Ethereum-based NFT. 

However, problems are usually followed by problem solvers. Hundreds of developers have dedicated their professional lives of late to either building decentralized apps to help scale projects like Bitcoin or Ethereum or creating more scalable networks from the ground up. 

Layer-1: The underlying blockchain architecture. For example, Bitcoin and Ethereum.

Layer-2: A network that sits on top of Layer-1, which facilities network activity. For example, the Lightning Network and Raiden Network.

The following Layer-1 vs. Layer-2 blockchain guide explores both approaches and how they contrast. 

Layer-1 vs. Layer-2 Blockchains: The Basics

Layer-1 updates usually involve consensus protocol changes or sharding

As you may know, Bitcoin and Ethereum use a gawky but effective consensus protocol called Proof-of-Work (PoW). It’s good at what it does because it works. However, as network activity grows, its limitations become unbearable for many. 

PoW requires miners to solve cryptographically-difficult equations via computational power– hence Bitcoin mining facilities that are just warehouses with specifically designed computers running 24/7/365

At times, transactions can take way too long for convenience’s sake and become very expensive. Bitcoin can manage about seven transactions per second, whereas Ethereum can do 15-20. 

Proof-of-Stake (PoS) is a relatively newer protocol; rather than computation power, it relies on people (validators) staking a certain quantity of holdings to validate transactions.

Changing consensus algorithms can be a divisive ordeal, and switching from PoW to PoS on a network as large as that of Bitcoin or Ethereum would require achieving agreement among the majority of participants, which can be extremely difficult. 

Sharding is another Layer-1 scaling strategy. Sharding breaks transaction sets into smaller chunks called shards, which the network can process at a much faster rate. Think of cutting a PBJ sandwich into small pieces (shards) versus eating it bite by bite. Each small piece you eat is a finalized transaction, whereas the latter approach would require the whole sandwich to be eaten before the transactions are final. 

Attempting to implement scalability measures on a Layer-1 blockchain would require a full or partial network update, which is a slow and contentious process; if things go sideways, the entire network could face enormous damages. 

Many projects have been launched to provide users the scalability that the more legacy cryptocurrency projects have struggled to do. 

For example, chains like Solana, Cosmos, and Cardano (yet to launch anything) have emerged in attempts to unseat Ethereum as the most popular blockchain network for dApps, primarily targeting its scalability issues and low-hanging fruit. 

The user experience tends to be much faster and cheaper on the newer Layer-1s– transactions on Osmosis, a decentralized exchange built on Cosmos, cost around a penny. In contrast, the Ethereum DEX UniSwap can cost dozens or hundreds of dollars. 

However, the opportunity to scale the world’s most popular Layer-1s instead of launch new ones from the ground up is an admirable and lucrative challenge accepted by many. 

They do so through Layer-2 blockchain innovation

Layer-2: Attempts at Scalability

Layer-2s are essentially sandboxes for creativity with minimal or zero disruption to the underlying network.

There are two types of Layer-2 blockchains: state channels and nested blockchains.

A state channel allows for two participants who would otherwise interact on the blockchain to interact off the blockchain, limiting the congestion of the network. 

Imagine Bitcoin’s or Ethereum’s blockchain as a 10-lane superhighway with bumper-to-bumper traffic. A state channel would be the back-road approach you could take to avoid driving into a slow, expensive network and get to your end destination at a fraction of the time and cost. 

Here’s how state channels work: 

  1. A blockchain segment is sealed off through a smart contract or multi-signature means, where all participants agree on the conditions. Lightning Network and Raiden Network used Hashed Timelock Contracts (HTLCs) for their state channels. 
  2. The transaction participants can then directly interact without needing to submit their request to the miners on the Layer-1. 
  3. When all the transaction sets on the state channel are complete, the final state is added to the blockchain. 

So, while a transaction is technically not “final” until added to the blockchain, state channel projects like Bitcoin’s Lightning Network and Ethereum’s Raiden Network effectively carry out the role of policing and verifying transactions. 

The idea is that these “batched” transaction blocks can effectively internally settle; when they do, the entire batch is added to the blockchain. As such, Lightning Network enables fast microtransactions (low fees, fast settlement), and Raiden does the same thing for Ethereum’s broader functionality. 

However, state channels have some limitations. 

Nested blockchains aim to increase scalability exponentially, whereas state channels are more linear. 

Ethereum is a popular breeding ground for decentralized apps to solve scalability issues. OmiseGO, for example, is experimenting with a nested blockchain scaling solution called Plasma. 

In Plasma, multiple levels of specific-use blockchains sit on top of the leading blockchains in parent-child connections. The parent chain then dedicates specific work to child chains, such as a social network or decentralized exchange.

The root chain still calls all the shots and sets the ground rules, but nested blockchains relieve some load. 

Final Thoughts: What You Should Know About Blockchain Scalability

While the differences between Layer-1 and Layer-2 solutions might seem exclusively technical, it’s worth considering that by collecting NFTs, holding tokens, and using dApps, you’re the direct stakeholder in the whole ordeal. 

While Ethereum enjoys a considerable first-mover advantage for NFTs (and DeFi), boasting multi-billion-dollar dApps like OpenSea, competitors are gaining on its tail. 

As an NFT investor or creator, being aware of broader industry trends like scalability is an excellent way to keep your ear to the ground, whether that be for the purpose of finding the next BAYC (on another chain) or creating the next homerun NFT brand for a diehard layer-1 alternative. 

Top NFT-Based Trading Card Games (TCGs)

NFT-based games integrate traditional gaming concepts with blockchain technology, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), and other decentralized financial elements. 

Gamers are loving GameFi (the intersection of gaming and NFTs, and even DeFi) for three main reasons: 

  1. True ownership: While in conventional digital games, players can buy in-game assets, those assets don’t actually belong to them. On the other hand, NFT-based games give players complete control over their assets– in-game assets like cards, lands, avatars, or swords are NFTs.
  2. Verifiable rarity and uniqueness: Non-fungibility makes it possible for creators to make 100% unique tokens, as well as programming different rarity levels for the assets. Naturally, some items in games will be scarcer or more useful than others, and their value should reflect that. Since everything happens on the blockchain, it’s easy to verify the scarcity, uniqueness, and authenticity of each asset.
  • Opportunity to earn income while playing: These games implement play-to-earn mechanisms. By participating in games, players can earn cryptocurrencies and in-game items that have real-world value. Many games have their own secondary markets for trading.

NFT-Based trading card games are getting so much attention because they’re a perfect mesh for most any game genre, from role-playing games to fighting games. One of the most popular gaming categories is card trading. 

For many people, training card games, or TCGs, revive childhood memories of collectible card games while at the same time offering a new way of generating revenue.

In play-to-earn NFT-based card trading games, each card is a non-fungible token (NFT), usually in ERC-721 standards. They enable the play-to-earn mechanism using common elements found in GameFi, such as an in-game currency and a marketplace. 

Here are the top NFT-based trading card games. 

Gods Unchained

Gods Unchained is the most popular trading card game in the blockchain universe. It runs on Ethereum and Immutable X. 

Gods Unchained is a free-to-play fantasy-themed turn-based, tactical card game; players must build their decks based on a strategy. 

By playing the game, you can earn common core cards. Those cards can’t be traded on the marketplace; at this point, they are not minted on the blockchain. It’s possible to increase the value of these common cards, by earning “flux”, a resource gained by winning the ranked games.

Gods Unchained has a process called The Forge, in which players who have earned enough flux can merge two identical core cards into one by spending flux. This process creates higher-quality cards, and since the forged cards are minted on the blockchain, they can be sold on the blockchain, sometimes for a hefty profit. 

Splinterlands

Splinterlands game runs on the Hive blockchain. 

You can test the game for free, but to start playing, you need to buy a starter set for $10.You can get new cards by buying packs from the shop or individual items from other players in the marketplace. You can also sell your assets on this marketplace. 

One of the highlights of Splinterlands is its cross-compatibility with multiple blockchains, enabling users to trade their cards on several marketplaces. 

In addition to selling your cards, you can earn in Splinterlands by getting its in-game currency DEC (Dark Energy Crystals). There are a couple of ways to acquire DEC in the game. First, by winning ranked battles, and second by destroying the cards you don’t use anymore. You can use DEC to buy assets from the game’s shop.

Another way to earn on Splinterlands is renting your cards via peakmonsters.

Sorare

Sorare is a fantasy football game built on the Ethereum blockchain. 

You can collect player cards and build teams, and as with real-world trading card games, the real value comes from the most valuable player cards. Depending on the rarity of the card, it can get quite expensive.

The Sorare play-to-earn mechanism enables users to participate in tournaments, where users can earn points and rewards based on their team’s performance.

Dark Country Game

Dark Country is a trading card game on the WAX blockchain with gothic-themed characters like zombies, ghosts, and haunted Indians.

In addition to cards, players can own heroes, items, and lands as NFT assets. Players can stake Dark Country assets on rplanet.io and collect cards on collect.social to gain the platform’s Racoon tokens. 

Dark Country has a weekly forging activity similar to Gods Unchained’s The Forge called Heroes Reforge and Staking. Players need to burn four heroes of the same type in order to receive a new hero with better quality. They can then stake this improved asset to earn rewards.

Dark Country has recently introduced land assets compatible with WAX and Flow blockchains. 

With lands, several new revenue generation options will be possible soon, such as land leasing and staking the platform’s in-game currency Shadow Dime (SDM) on lands.

Final Thoughts: Emerging Exciting New TCG Projects

While some may argue that the game mechanics of most NFT-based games are primitive and “not quite there yet,” TCGs marry the simplicity of a trading card game with the blockchain very well. 

A few more exciting TCG projects to keep an eye on include:

  1. Skyweaver, a free-to-play Ethereum-based game in beta mode. Players have three grades of cards: base, silver, and gold. Base cards can’t be traded, but silver and gold cards can be. You earn silver cards via ranked rewards and conquest, and gold cards via conquest.
  2. Parallel,  a science-fiction-themed card game also based on the Ethereum blockchain. The team built its own NFT drop system. The project is currently raising funds by selling drops, which contain cards. These cards will have utilities once the game development is complete.
  3. Metropolis Origins, is a cyberpunk-themed card game by QXR Studios running on the WAX blockchain. It’s a sequel to game designer Graeme Devine’s adventure game Metropolis. The game released a founder NFT pack that enables owners to play the game in beta mode. 

The evolution of blockchain card games will be one to watch, as more implementations of conventional card games on the blockchain continue to emerge.  With NFTs’ programmable nature, we can expect to see the evolution of more dynamic, and potentially lucrative and competitive, playing card games in the near future.