CryptoPunks is “the project” in the NFT space and owning one will easily raise your bar high in the NFT community. CryptoPunks is the most prominent NFT project there is and why wouldn’t it be? It is the forerunner of probably every NFT project that there is. CryptoPunks walked so that other NFT projects can run. CryptoPunks NFTs are extremely valuable and are a sense of authority in the NFT space.
The level of popularity that CryptoPunks have reached now has by far been accomplished by a handful of other NFT projects. When you look back to their growth of popularity, it rose in fame and importance simultaneously with the Ethereum blockchain. CryptoPunks have also contributed by leaps and bounds to the relevancy of the current NFT projects like Bored Ape Yacht Club. CryptoPunks is a project that intimidates pros and newbies alike. If you’re willing to buy a CryptoPunks NFT or are only curious as to why the CryptoPunks NFTs are so expensive and popular, this article is here for you. This article is a complete guide to CryptoPunks NFTs, making it easy for the lot of you to grasp this project.
What are CryptoPunks?
CryptoPunks comes off as one of the first NFT projects to be released on the Ethereum blockchain. It was launched in June 2017 by the studio Larva Labs and it was acquired by Yuga Labs in 2022. The CryptoPunks NFT project comprises 10,000 unique NFTs which are 24 x 24-pixel art images. The NFTs depict humans mostly, although there are other types as well such as 88 Zombies, 24 Apes, and 9 Aliens. These type of NFTs are considered to be the rarest in the collection and has extremely high values.
All the CryptoPunks are adorned by traits and characteristics. Each CryptoPunk can display any combination of 87 different traits. Some of the traits include necklaces, eyepatches, earrings, hats, pipes, and many more.
Although, a single CryptoPunk has the maximum capacity of having 7 traits and no more than that. Nonetheless, there exists only one CryptoPunks with 7 traits among the whole collection and it is #Punk 8348. Punk 8348 is adorned by traits such as cigarette, mole, buck teeth, top hat, earrings, classic shades, and a big beard. On the contrary, there is also a CryptoPunk with zero traits. The most common ones are the CryptoPunks which have two or three traits. The illustration below shows how the quantity of features affects a CryptoPunks NFT’s value and scarcity.
Who created CryptoPunks?
When one thinks of an NFT project, one looks for its community. But unlike most NFT projects, CryptoPunks did not have any community to start with. In addition to it, the project did not have a roadmap as well. The project originally started as an experiment by Canadian Software Developers and Larva Labs founders Matt Hall and John Watkinson.
When the CryptoPunks NFT project was released, the NFT space was not how it is today. There were only a small number of people who knew about NFTs and the hype around it had a long way to go. As the collection was launched in June 2017, it was available for free and anyone who wanted them could acquire them. As an Ethereum wallet was required to own one, the supply was limited to the ones who had already invested in crypto.
Looking back to when it was released in 2017 when it was free to own one, CryptoPunks have come a long way into stardom in the NFT space. They started as an experimental startup and by some time they became one of the most influential and popular NFT projects to date. The fact that it started without any community and a community around it started to build on its own is an extraordinary phenomenon.
This project might not have been the first NFT project to be released, but although it was one of the earliest ones, it grew to be the most influential NFT project. Blessed people are the ones who got them at the first chance before all the hype grew around NFTs and right now most of them are millionaires.
How to buy a CryptoPunk NFT?
CryptoPunk NFT collection is in the mind of every NFT enthusiast. It is probably the first NFT collection one knows about at first when getting onto NFTs. When they realize how big a deal CryptoPunks are in the NFT world, they feel as if they are hit by a wall by their immense value.
To understand its soaring high values let’s take into account the price of CryptoPunks NFTs. Alien Punk #3100 sold for 8 ETH on July 6th, 2017. At the time, that was roughly equivalent to $2,000. This would have sounded like an absurd sum to pay for a JPEG back then. But in March of 2021, nearly four years later, the same Punk sold for a startling 4,200 ETH. This is equivalent to $7.58 million.
This is the highest CryptoPunks NFT sale and is just one instance of its high value. There have been a lot of high sales for CryptoPunks as 2021 progressed. At this point in time, the lowest price for a CryptoPunk was around 100ETH. Although, right now the prices have reached equilibrium and recent punk sales have been around 60 to 100 ETH. Rare CryptoPunks are sold for around 150 ETH.
If you have the required amount of Ethereum in your wallet you can buy a CryptoPunk from the Larva Labs website. You can also add Ethereum to your wallet and buy one from the website. They are also available in marketplaces such as OpenSea.
There are also auction houses that sell punks sometimes. Keep yourself updated and you can land across a CryptoPunk for a lower price. Christie’s is a prominent auction house that has contributed a lot to the development of CryptoPunks. The $69 million Beeple sale in Christie’s was followed by the auction of a collection of nine CryptoPunks in May. The CryptoPunk collection was sold for $16.9 million.
Why are CryptoPunks so valuable?
As NFTs evolved and came into prominence, the CryptoPunks NFTs became a sign of supreme authority and an ideal investment within the NFT domain. The owners of the CryptoPunks NFT are kept in high regard in the NFT community by the members. They are seen as the visionaries of NFTs.
The owners of CryptoPunk NFTs are regarded as the people who realized early on how big and influential NFTs will become. A lot of the owners of CryptoPunk NFTs have built up a community, brand, projects, and so on based on their CryptoPunk NFT. GMoney an NFT investor stated that he bought the CryptoPunk because of the status and authority that came with it.
CryptoPunks as one of the earliest NFT projects to be released on the Ethereum blockchain. So much so that the project and the blockchain rose to prominence altogether. Some claim that owning a Punk is equivalent to placing a wager on the significance of NFTs and the Ethereum blockchain. Given their history and how they evolved alongside the Ethereum blockchain from their earliest days. Most of the early Punks investors didn’t merely stumble upon the project. So, a reason for the immense value of CryptoPunk NFTs is the historical significance it holds and how it stands for the trusteeship that Ethereum it offers.
Following its financial value and the social status of CryptoPunk NFTs, a lot of celebrities, investors, and capitalists have gotten into CryptoPunk NFTs. Also, getting your hands on the NFT project that made ordinary people millionaires in a short period is not easy. Getting one at a low price is also near impossible. The CryptoPunk NFT collection still remains a sensation in the NFT space and will continue to be for a long time. This is probably because of the success the early investors claimed with the project.
Every NFT project whether it be a popular one or a mediocre one, they have some sort of controversies surrounding it. Similarly, CryptoPunks is also not free of such controversies. February of 2022 saw Larva Labs facing criticism following John Watkinson’s, a co-founder of the project, sale of his stock of V1 CryptoPunks NFTs. Although, in a matter of days the V1 Punks were taken off the NFT marketplaces by Larva Labs and giving a financial blow to the investors of the V1 Punks of Watkinson.
But it was only the investors who suffered the loss. Watkinson did not experience any kind of loss and became the owner of all the money he received from the sales. This is because the price drop was caused by the company that he and some other person controlled.
This led to the NFT community having two different opinions about the incident. The community was split into whether the action of Larva Labs was good or not.
Some people stated that Larva Labs should not be criticized. This is because the team had stated that they did not approve the project. On the contrary, some people stated that the company tried to take down the project and informed them they were on sale after two days Watkinson had begun selling it.
There are other instances as well when Larva Labs faced criticism from the NFT community. They faced a lot of criticism when they were attacking viable projects which were not trying to scam people. They faced criticism for not clarifying or explaining the Intellectual Property rights owners get with their CryptoPunk.
CryptoPunks acquisition by Yuga Labs
Yuga Labs, the creator of Bored Ape Yacht Club, acquired CryptoPunks along with Meebits in March 2022. The motive behind this acquisition was to promote a “community of builders” developing a derivative art form based on the two projects. Similar to what they’ve done with BAYC, Yuga Labs will transfer the IP, exclusive licensing, and commercial rights to the NFT holders. With this, the NFT holders of CryptoPunks and Meebits can create artwork and products based on the NFTs they own.
This followed the end of a controversy surrounding CryptoPunks. The owners of the NFTs finally understood the rights that came with their NFTs. CryptoPunks creators stated that they agreed with the deal as they realized that Yuga Labs can develop the project better than they can. “Yuga Labs are the best in the world at what they do and are the ideal stewards of the CryptoPunks and Meebits. In their hands, we are confident that they will continue to be vital, thriving projects in the emerging decentralized web,” they said.
Yuga Labs additionally received 423 CryptoPunks and 1711 Meebits as part of the deal. Yuga Labs replied, “We’re not in a rush to do anything but give people their IP, see what they build, and listen” when asked what they intended to do with them.
Future of CryptoPunks
It strikes as astonishing to every person because of how influential and popular CryptoPunks have come along as an NFT project. It can be assuredly said that no matter how long the NFT space grows and develops, CryptoPunks will never lose its credibility, and thinking that they will wither away is absurd.
Currently, the CryptoPunks is under a new team, Yuga Labs, and the project will surely go under some changes. Unlike Bored Ape Yacht Club where Yuga Labs get a share from every sale of BAYC NFTs, Yuga Labs did not go in this direction with CryptoPunks and Meebits. Yuga Labs claims they have no plans to change that, but they haven’t provided any information on how they intend to use the collections. Prices continue to swing dramatically while everyone waits to see what Yuga Labs does with CryptoPunks. In October 2021, CryptoPunk #273 was bought for almost $1.03 million. In May 2022, just six months later, it was sold at a significant loss. It cost only $139,000 to buy. As a result, it appears that Yuga Labs may find it challenging to get a return on its investment.
In conclusion, CryptoPunks over the years has managed to garner authority and fame for itself which highly surpasses the other NFT projects. There is no doubt that the project will remain the same for several years and with a new team behind it, they will have considerable changes, hopefully for a better future.