Bored Ape Yacht Club creators are set to generate up to $300 million worth of crypto in ‘metaverse’ land sales this weekend, in what is expected to be the largest non-fungible token launch ever .
Yuga Labs, backed by Andreessen Horowitz, plans to sell NFT “deeds” for up to 55,000 virtual plots of land in the Otherside, its next metaverse game, starting Saturday.
Each act, which will grant the holder the right to land in a game that has not yet been released or even widely previewed, will cost 305 ApeCoin – the cryptocurrency launched by Yuga and its partners last month – or more than 6 $000.
NFTs use blockchain technology to prove ownership of a digital asset and have quickly become a multi-billion dollar market for virtual goods ranging from computer-generated artwork to cartoon characters costing thousands of dollars.
If the Otherside land sells off, as is widely expected, Yuga and its partners, including crypto and gaming conglomerate Animoca Brands, should generate sales totaling $335 million, according to FT calculations. The estimate assumes that the value of ApeCoin – which has been volatile for the past few days – remains above $20.
The game will test whether Yuga, which was valued at $4 billion in a funding round led by Andreessen Horowitz last month, can turn its popular but exclusive Bored Ape character series into a larger platform for NFTs. , pushing speculation and often high-priced. chips in the mainstream.
The so-called Metaverse will allow owners of other popular NFT collections, such as Cool Cats and World of Women, to play as characters they own within the Other Side, though gameplay details and what what landowners can do with their plots is still largely unknown.
Tech companies, from Facebook parent company Meta to Fortnite developer Epic Games, are betting billions that the metaverse – a three-dimensional virtual world – will become the next big computing platform, in what some in the Silicon Valley call it ‘Web3’.
Billions of dollars worth of ApeCoin was distributed to creators, backers and owners of Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs in mid-March. Any investor can now buy and trade ApeCoin on crypto exchanges such as Coinbase, FTX, and Binance.
Anticipation of Otherside’s launch, which was first announced with a teaser video six weeks ago, has seen ApeCoin’s price nearly double in the past week, according to CoinMarketCap.com. It fell from around $14 to a high of around $27 on Thursday, before falling back to around $22 on Friday.
As NFT traders rushed to liquidate their holdings in other collections to load on ApeCoin, the prices of many other NFT projects fell.
However, overall NFT transaction volumes recovered this month after falling sharply earlier in the year. The starting price of a Bored Ape is now near its all-time high at around 150 ETH, or over $400,000, after initially going on sale for around $250 a year ago.
Several blockchain-based metaverse game developers, such as Animoca-backed Sandbox and Decentraland, have already sold millions of dollars worth of virtual land as NFTs in recent months, despite having limited numbers of regular users.
A Yuga spokesperson declined to comment.
Additional reporting by Cristina Criddle
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