Written by Chef Goose
The last few months have been full of happenings — mostly positive, full of excitement, with the occasional disappointments or frustrations. This article aims to look at the projects that stood out the most, and those that left us wanting more. Obviously, everything here is opinion-based. You may disagree with some of my choices.
This article will focus on project and people over marketplaces, but I want to give a quick shoutout to the three main marketplaces, who all put in an immense amount of work to take NFTs to another level this summer. Joepegs produced the most volume, Campfire was the most experimental and willing to push new boundaries, and while Kalao had its own approach with dutch auctions, it is just getting ramped up with the upcoming launch of its V2.
Now, onto the actual NFTs! These are the 5 sections in this article:
- THE HOPEFULS
- UP NEXT ON AVALANCHE
- HONORABLE MENTIONS — NEW ARTIST
While volume certainly was a factor in evaluating projects, it was not the only factor — I also took into account the general excitement behind projects, the impact they had, and what they were able to deliver.
The projects that managed to stand out over the last 3 months
BEENZ ON ACID
There were a few free mints before it, but Beenz on Acid is the collection that kicked off free mint season on Avalanche. It seemed like everyone on Avalanche wanted in on it — Floor went up quick, it felt like half the PFPs were Beenz, and we got a ton of memes — My favorite being this short video that kept popping up:
Among the first projects to use Joepegs’ launchpad. After a quick mint-out, Chad Doge has since kept building up its brand. They are actively communicating and participating with the community, and trying to find different ways to get people engaged.
They’ve now partnered with Imperium Empires for the Chad Doge in Space event, and have started the Chad News Network which covers recent events in Crypto. This type of content isn’t delivered by most projects, as it requires particular time, effort and creativity.
Does TapTapKaboom ever sleep? In the last few months, we’ve seen him produce Doodleverse, Happy Sun, 100 Web Characters, Leopard Queens, and a ton of special editions for other collections.
If I had to name one All-Star for the summer, it’d be TapTapKaboom, who has been basically omnipresent through the Avalanche NFT scene.
One of the first mints of the summer — Early June. MadSkullz hype started earlier in the year, with BabySkullz and the Hall of Famez. They were one of the only projects to actually have a Plan B in case of them not minting out due to the poor market conditions— Their Hulkz program. This allowed them to keep their momentum going, instead of scrambling to figure out what to do. In addition, the art is slick, with each NFT looking unique.
They set up a validator node, as promised in their roadmap, and seem on track to release their Skullz City in September. In my experience with the team, they believe in open communication and have a good relationship with their community. Altogether, I feel like they’ve shown to be a solid team that will be a mainstay on Avalanche.
Beenz on Acid kicked off free mint season, and Smol Joes took it to the next level. After Smol Joes, it felt like every free mint had a potential to skyrocket in price — Of course, few actually did, but the hope was there. And that’s on top of them starting the “Smol” trend, which lasted most of the summer.
Due to the high price for Joes, APAs and Lands, it’s a universe that was hard to get into until the Creeps came along, making it possible to jump in at around 2 AVAX. There hasn’t been much to do yet with Creeps, but it is expected that more is to come from Smolverse, as land’s utility still hasn’t been announced.
One of those unexpected collections that just hits different. It has that je-ne-sais-quoi, which seems to be a combination of the drawn art style, of being based on known characters, and of the various situations they are put in.
Their second collection, “More Sato”, was received with as much enthusiasm. Nobody knows what’s in the stars for Sato, Avalanche will be waiting eagerly.
This feels like a mic-drop to end the last three months. For the last month or so, we’ve kept hearing about Gabe Weis and Conscious Lines, a successful artist from Ethereum. The catch — 999 NFTs at 5 AVAX each. A big ask for the Avalanche crowd, who have shown to regularly not been able to mint out projects of much smaller market caps. I was skeptical myself, I felt like there wouldn’t be enough buyers. In the end, I was shown to be wrong.
I’m glad I can put Conscious Lines in this category, because after a summer of free mints, I was worried that people weren’t ready to fork out the AVAX when something good came along. This mint shows that Avalanche is capable of coughing up the dough when presented with a solid project.
The projects, events or tendencies that were a disappointment this summer
There are too many to list them all — Really, I estimate that at least 70% of NFT projects end up here, and I think I’m being conservative.
Most projects are quick to hype-hype-hype before mint, to spew promises left-and-right, anything to help the NFTs sell. However, few actually have a post-mint plan. They start a Discord, have a few giveaways for holders, and then hand out whitelists for other projects every now-and-then. They end up slowly fading away, as the project creators move on to something else which can make them money, instead of working for holders who already gave them funds at the mint date.
There. Were. So. Many.
To be clear, I’m not talking about projects that actually made an effort to produce quality pixel art. I’m talking about low-effort projects that took something that could be made in an afternoon and added the word “Smol” in front of it, just to cash-in on the Smolverse hype.
Here, we had a collection with superb art — It wasn’t a derivative or a copy of someone else, it was its own thing, with its own style, and the quality was good. Unfortunately, for whatever reason, the mint didn’t go as well as planned. Not enough showed up and bought, to the surprise of many.
But hey, at least the 1/1s looked even more stunning, from a collection of artists, so the possibility of getting one was exciting. Except there was an error, and they were all accidentally minted into the creator’s wallet.
Overall, the error created a damper, as minting became less motivating; There was no possibility of getting a 1/1 out of it. Kalao acted quickly and fairly — They closed the mint, dropped everyone an extra Spacetronnaut NFT, and had a lottery for the 1/1s.
The first project launched on Joepegs’ launchpad. It had a large amount of hype behind it — I personally was very excited for it, and have several still in my wallet. I would say that the disappointment here is two-fold:
- The marketing: I looked back at their Twitter posts from the weeks before mint, and almost the entirety of the marketing was done with the 2D and 3D uniques. We barely saw what the rest of the collection (90% of it) was going to look like. I feel like many were disappointed, as the collection was not what they were expecting. While the 2D and 3D are phenomenal and, in a collection of their own, would perform very well, the generative part of the collection doesn’t hit the same.
- Post-mint: The Person has done little more than perform as what we discussed earlier — A Whitelist Project. They organized a party in Istanbul, which is fun but not accessible for the majority of holders. Other than that, they have promised things like gifts for holders and other surprises, but nothing has materialized yet.
The Person has one of the biggest treasuries among Avalanche’s NFT projects — Over 2,000 AVAX. The talent is there, the funds are there — Here’s hoping they can soon show why they were so hyped.
The disappointment here is not directly related to the project — They are still active and promoting their mission, which is to educate on, inspire and fund projects related to nature. The reason I put it in the “disappointment” sections is the low level of support it received at mint. Some put it on the art, but I personally feel like the art wasn’t the problem — While it was special and not to everyone’s liking, it is better than many projects we see succeed.
My perception is that people were not interested in buying an NFT which would use a significant portion of funds for charity instead of to reinvest toward holders. I wouldn’t say it’s surprising, but it is disappointing.
The projects that have not yet delivered much, but which I believe have the potential to be hard-hitters among Avalanche NFTs
RICH PEON POOR PEON
I hesitated between putting this one in “Award-Winners” or “Hopefuls”. Its floor price has skyrocketed recently — who knows where it’ll end up. I put it in this category because I feel like it has hyped itself too much to already call it a winner — it needs to show that it is capable of delivering more than hype. I believe it will be able to — It has a strong community backing already, and a heavy team behind it. I don’t see the Joepegs team letting this one down.
The Soulmeleons team came on the scene strong, with solid pixel art and creators who were from Ethereum’s scene. They are good communicators who properly laid out their vision. Their mint went well and the floor rose quickly, especially with their many teasers of the upcoming Gen. 1 collection.
They want to bring soulbound tokens in a significant manner to Avalanche. They’ve recently been pretty silent — I imagine because they’re building. They had given end of August as an objective for significant news.
I still have trouble believing something of Morfs’ quality was a free mint.
Despite them being made of clay (I think?), they are full of life, each one is unique, and the style is one I had never seen on Avalanche before. I can’t wait to see what the artist comes up with next — If this was the free version, imagine what the paid version looks like — It’ll be stunning.
They minted just this week, and as of right now are currently still minting. It seems to be one of those slower mints, which will mint-out over time, but that’s fine. LoFi Leopards is something you realise is better and better as time goes on, and I suspect Avalanche will gradually realise that they have a gem on their hands with it. Not only is the art appealing, but they merged it with music NFTs, which are still a new concept to people.
The creator is active with the community and is serious about building. It takes resilience to get back up after the setback he suffered. After a problematic first mint, which went through a problem with the metadata, he took a step back and re-organized to launch this successful version.
UP NEXT ON AVALANCHE
The upcoming mints that I am keeping an eye on
Rarely do we see an Ava Labs member start a project, but here it is. To be clear, this project isn’t backed by Ava Labs — It is Dani’s passion project, in collaboration with other known members of the community, such as developer Minifridge.
They released Enlistment Passes, a practice not often seen on Avalanche (I got a few). Usually, with mech NFT projects, it seems like the biggest difficulty is giving them enough personality and making them different enough that people will want to show them off — Often, mech projects end up looking similar to one-another, making them lose that sense of uniqueness.
ALTER EGO HUNTER
The EgoVerse has a strong community behind it, and the upcoming Alter Ego Hunter mint is the project it has been talking about for a while now. I honestly am not very familiar with The EgoVerse community, but it seems like this will be a significant step for them, so I’ll be keeping an eye on it. It’s always a win when a community manages to build up to something.
We don’t know much about the Painight mint yet, but it is set to bring quality manga/anime NFTs, something we’ve seen little of in the Avalanche ecosystem. If you look through their Haoku collection on OpenSea/Magic Eden, you’ll likely be as eager as I am to see what they have for Avalanche.
I’m relatively new to Avalanche, so I’m not familiar with all of its backgrounds. From what I understand, the artist has been a contributor on Avalanche in the past. I believe I’ve read that this character was also an inspiration for Avalanche Party Animals. I don’t know much more about the project — I probably need to do a bit more research. But I like the art.
SILTA FINANCE x JOEPEGS CHARITY WEEK
This one hits different — It isn’t a collection, but an event in which NFTs will be sold for charity. It will include work from artists like Sato, Burger Pics, TapTapKaboom, Marvin Paradox, and a ton more popular artists from AVAX and FTM.
For more information on this event, click here.
HONORABLE MENTIONS — NEW ARTISTS
The summer brought a hefty number of new artists to the Avalanche NFT scene. I wanted to take a moment to highlight as many as I can, since they are essential to keeping the NFT scene fresh. I likely forgot some, I am sorry in advance. I tried to focus on those who weren’t here or prominent before June.
- Kidz Labz
- Scribble Warlock
- Ali Ergin
- Flora Marquez
- Yigit Akdag
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