The NFT ecosystem has become the land of giants, with several giant companies and studios dominating the space through consolidation and investments.
While Animoca Brands and its subsidiaries own several of the most prominent blockchain game titles and have investments across the board, Yuga Labs came under the spotlight by launching the Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT Collection. Since then, the studio has purchased the largest collection of NFTs from Market Cap:cryptopunks—and founded several other NFT projects.
NFT Collection Comparison (Data source: footprint analysis)
BAYC Collection (Data source: footprint analysis)
CryptoPunks Collection (Data source: footprint analysis)
These two worlds are now colliding as NFTs become gamified, with huge repercussions for investors and regular cryptocurrency enthusiasts alike.
Using on-chain data, we can assess the true extent of these giants’ holdings, understand their impact on the industry, and analyze how you can make better decisions in anticipation of further collaboration and consolidation by these players.
Who are the Animoca brands?
Animoca Brands used to be a relatively minor mobile game developer until 2021, when its flagship product, the sandboxcaused a sensation in the crypto industry during the bull market.
The trading volume of SandBox NFT (Data source: footprint analysis)
SandBox NFT Buyers and Sellers (Data source: footprint analysis)
While Animoca has several other notable games in its briefcase, has become known for its extensive investment in GameFi and NFT. Since 2021, it has financed almost a hundred projects.
Animoca Brands investment by category (Data source: Footprint Analytics)
Number of Animoca Brands investments by category (Data source: Footprint Analytics)
Animoca Brands Investment History (Data source: footprint analysis)
Projects they have invested in guilds like YGG and Avocado Games, blockchain games like Mines of Dalarnia and Upland, and broader infrastructure projects like ImmutableX and Atmos.
Game Project Statistics – Animoca Brands (Data source: footprint analysis)
Animoca Brands’ investments are truly extensive. However, in the current bear market, it has become clear that even Animoca’s endorsement is a smooth path to growth.
Only 7 of Animoca’s GameFi investment projects have more than 100 daily active users. On the other hand, the company is a major investor in the two most active games in the industry today, alien worlds Y splinterlandsas well as one of the fastest growing and largest projects at Polygon, arch8.
New Users-Alien Worlds
The vast majority of games fight to attract new users from October 2022.
Ranking of the best games by new users (Data source: footprint analysis)
The above data shows that while Animoca Brands dominates the GameFi industry, GameFi itself is at risk of being trapped in its bubble of existing users, without new blood, without an influx of outside interest.
Until recently, the GameFi and NFT industries have been relatively separate. That’s starting to change, though, and the partnership between Animoca Brands and Yuga Labs could be the catalyst for the next wave of GameFi adoption.
Who are Yuga Labs?
Around the same time that The Sandbox by Animoca Brands gained mainstream attention, Yuga Labs launched the Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT Collection.
Launched on April 30, 2021, the price of its first BAYC NFT was 0.08 ETH (it was worth around $190 then). Within 12 hours, the collection was sold out and celebrities like Stephen Curry, Gwenyth Paltrow and Post Malone began shopping for Bored Apes.
Yuga Labs has become one of the biggest names in Web 3.0 by launching a number of spin-off projects:Bored Apes Kennel Club Y Mutant Apes Yacht Club—and acquiring collection number 2, CryptoPunks, in March 2022. The company has also launched its token, ApeCoin, and is building its metaverse project, Other sidewhich will integrate your various NFT collections and more.
Yuga Lab Portfolio (Data source: footprint analysis)
Meebits NFT trading volume (Data source: footprint analysis)
Meebits NFT Wash Commercial List (Data source: footprint analysis)
Yuga Labs’ many spin-off projects highlight the difficulty of keeping even major blue chip collections from becoming obsolete. Its expansion into the metaverse (with Otherside) is the perfect case study of how NFT studios gamify. Gamification can keep your communities hopeful for the next thing and add utility.
NFTs meet GameFi
As described above, GameFi projects need new users and waves of interest, while NFT studios need to make their collections useful. Taking these two factors into account, the NFT gamification seems unavoidable.
Game NFT Rating (Data source: footprint analysis)
Will Otherside be the project that brings gamification to a critical point?
In December 2021, Animoca Brands partnered with Yuga Labs on an undisclosed blockchain game. However, many speculate that this game is in fact Otherside, which will gamify the NFT property by creating a world where Apes and other NFT projects, for example, women’s world, cool catsetc.—they will interact.
In fact, after Yuga Labs released a trailer for Otherside with Cool Cats and Nouns NFT this past March, the Cool Cats collection saw an increase in trading volume.
Cool Cats Collection (Data source: footprint analysis)
Animoca Brands is a strategic investor in the Cool Cats Group, highlighting how the giants of the NFT ecosystem now share cross-value between their products.
However, since March, the Cool Cats collection has lost 72% percent of its value. However, they still have a respectable minimum price of 2.9 ETH.
Marketcap-Cool Cats Collection (Data source: footprint analysis)
Daily Minimum Price: Cool Cats vs. BAYC (Data source: footprint analysis)
By making use of popular NFT collections, GameFi developers grow their user base. On the other hand, games can solve the problem of the usefulness of studies: a mutually beneficial relationship.
The first to reap the rewards of this trend will be the participants in the major blue chip ecosystems, namely the Yugaverse. However, as the number of blockchain games and collections increases, we can expect collaborations between medium and small developers and studios creating NFT metaverse games.
This seismic shift is one of the reasons Footprint Analytics is developing analytics capabilities that combine the GameFi and NFT domains. For example, since it will be impossible to assess GameFi or NFT projects in their own bubbles, Footprint Analytics is creating a wallet tracker that gives analysts a complete picture of a gaming NFT holder. Which NFT resources are most useful to players in the context of a particular game? What percentage of NFT Collection X also plays Blockchain Game Y? These types of questions will become more pertinent.
This piece is contributed by footprint analysis community.
The Footprint Community is a place where data and crypto enthusiasts from around the world help each other understand and gain insight into Web3, the metaverse, DeFi, GameFi, or any other area of the nascent world of blockchain. Here you will find diverse and active voices supporting each other and moving the community forward.
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Footprint website: https://www.footprint.network
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the author should not be considered financial advice. We do not give advice on financial products.