There is a new trend in the crypto world: finding hidden gems before the rest of the market catches on. And it makes sense. 2021 is the year of the NFT with over 2 billion dollars in transactions.
Therefore, finding the next big thing has become a full-time job for some. And that’s how a virtually unknown project became the latest sensation in the market.
CryptoPunks: A not so punk start.
CryptoPunks was started back in 2017 by Larva Labs. It consists of 10,000 images turned into NFTs on the Ethereum blockchain. The images are drawn in oversized pixels and completely arbitrarily, which guaranteed each token’s uniqueness.
Back in 2017, Larva Labs released CryptoPunks for free since the ERC-721 token did not exist. Moreover, the creators saw the designs as an experiment that wasn’t worth much attention. The original release saw 9,000 of the 10,000 made released to the public. And that’s the end of the story.
At least it was until 2020 when the demand for them increased to the point where major auction houses like Christie’s and Sotheby’s were involved in the action. The demand for this NFT has made CryptoPunks one of the most prominent players in the market, with over 1.8 billion dollars in trade volume.
Punkmania started with Cryptopunks
So, where does this demand comes from, and why does it exist at all? To answer those questions it’s important to remember when CryptoPunks was released, 2017. That makes these NFTs one of the oldest ones on record. Moreover, the original designs were a real hit with the community. People used them as avatars on their social media simply because they liked the design. Therefore, when a price became attached to them, it was only a matter of time before their desirability would make them a hot commodity.
It’s unquestionable how popular CryptoPunks have become from Jay-Z to prominent venture capitalists and investors, have paid large sums of money to obtain a priced CryptoPunk. However, there is always room for profits. Aliens, apes, and zombies are the most sought-after CryptoPunks as they are the rarest. Ordinary people are the cheapest as they compose the bulk of the NFTs.
The future of this NFT seems to be etched in stone. Larva Labs has no plans to release new ones, which means the original 10,000 run is the only one there will be. Will their worth and value hold for years to come? That’s impossible to tell. Nevertheless, it’s important to denote the seismic shift that CryptoPunks caused. Visa became one of the latest companies to purchase as the company saw it as a historic artifact worth preserving.
As for the others? They are for purchase at the Larva Labs website. Sellers and buyers must go through there to exchange the NFTs. The usage of the Larva Labs website guarantees that all transactions are legitimate and helps the creators engage in future projects, like Meebits. So those interested be ready to spend anywhere between over 100,000 dollars or a couple thousand for one.