Project Loot reverses script in NFT – TechCrunch

Editor’s note: Kyle russell is the founder of Playbyte, a startup that creates an application that allows people to create games on their phones.

Last Friday, Dom Hofmann tweeted the launch of Booty, one of his new projects that looks at games and game creation through the lens of NFTs:

If “NFT”, “gas” and “minting” sound unintelligible, the short version is that this project allows you to spend some money to create a unique list of items that you could keep in the same wallet (an app like Rainbow) where you would keep cryptocurrencies or other digital collectibles, usually art (or, as skeptics gleefully observe, JPEG files).

I repeat: a unique list of items. No illustrations, statistics to compare the quality or even rules of the game that can inform such statistics.

People spent money to get those unique lists. Thousands. And like NFTs, a market quickly formed around these unique lists of items. The “floor” or minimum price to buy in a “bag” of loot, shot to thousands of dollars in Ethereum. Certain types of items on these lists sounded great and were found to be rare when looking at the whole set, so the bags containing them increased in value to extreme heights:

And people started filling in those missing elements as art, not fundamentally changing the underlying lists, but creating new works that explicitly reference the elements in particular lists:

And just like the lists themselves, people started taking an algorithmic approach to generating that art:

By August 31, there was a readable community of people …

  • invest in bags that contain certain types of items;
  • create tools to view loot items and monitor price fluctuations in this niche market;
  • working on new spinoff projects, like creating Kingdoms for a theoretical adventurer with the team in a loot bag to explore:

Except there are no game rules for these items yet, including what it would even mean to have a character equip them!

Hey what is that? 🔎 Oh right, people could also create or generate statistics!

This tweet really nails the general phenomenon:

In less than a week, a community has gone from text lists to endless illustrations of those items to worlds in which those items can reside and characters to handle them. Everything from taking simple primitives and generating context around them that gives them value.

It is something quite magical. But even if there is some speculative angle on creation, how many people can participate if these bags cost tens of thousands of dollars at the very least? For one thing: if you just think the game of inventing a game is fun, because all of these exchanges and items live on the Ethereum network, then you can still do things that incorporate them at no cost (except for the painful fees currently associated with using Ethereum).

And if you really care to have those unique items in your wallet so that you can really participate, people are also thinking of interesting paths there:

If that’s too much jargon, I’ll summarize again: there are feasible ways to make it free to “own” these items in order to play with the growing set of compatible applications or games that could incorporate Loot: you simply won’t have a legitimate bag of rare items that could sell for a lot of money.

Oh, and what if you like some of the items in a loot bag, but wish your adventurer could combine with other items from the larger set that just dropped?

Less than a week and it is already being interrupted by the separation!

Sorry, why is this interesting?

The Marvel Cinematic Universe began with Marvel Comics obtaining a $ 1 billion loan to finance the first four films based on their iconic superhero characters. The seeds of consciousness for these characters had been planted in the minds of the masses through decades of comic book and television appearances before their first blockbuster movie appearances. Decades of perhaps hundreds of writers and artists were paid to create fantastic stories for those characters that people would want to read and that would hook them to come back for the next issue. People became closely associated with characters with funny origins (bitten by a radioactive spider!).

All of this happened in a corporate context of top-down mass production. Some Marvel creatives did high-leverage work independently or in-house, printers made a ton of copies, and a supply chain brought those problems to comic book shops and dime stores across the country. Like dominoes, Stan Lee thinks of a new superhero (tune: this guy isn’t a hippy, he’s a gun-making industrialist!) Until five decades later, Avengers: Endgame and Black Panther warp the definition of blockbuster forever. .

But what if someone wanted to create an MCU competitor as a community, rather than go head-to-head with Disney?

Extrapolating from the last week of Loot …

You would release a contract to generate sets of superhero names and associated powers. People would mint those heroes and they would start trading on the open market. People build tools that determine which powers are the rarest, especially around the ones that sound great (“flying” is a gift).

They would imagine their hero, illustrate them themselves, and commission artists who could make them look great. Eventually, more technical folks in the community would do the heavy lifting to put together tools that could generate character art in a common style, or be customizable by some key parameters.

Eventually, people would commission crossover art, and then you’ll be just one step away from shared stories (increase the value of multiple characters with a single commissioned piece!).

DAOs, or decentralized groups that come together to create new projects in the crypto space or even “just” invest together, can buy more popular characters and commission more elaborate visual stories with the aim of increasing the value of that underlying element that contains a hero. name + powers and any folk art they have inspired.

And assuming the creators of the project followed the lead of Loot’s zeitgeist, this would all be IP that could be reused and remixed by anyone. That may sound crazy, isn’t the point of owning it, and the point of owning it is controlling how it’s used?

That’s the status quo at Disney. In a world of projects like Loot, you want to reinforce the value of the NFT you own, and that value reflects the renown and reputation of that NFT. Echoing the phrase “all press is good press”: any remix is ​​a good remix. To be referenced is to remain culturally relevant. So if you own an NFT that describes Arachnid Person, you want to contribute to an environment where as many people want to include Arachnid Person in their work as possible so that Arachnid Man No. 1 becomes something worth owning.

I’m really expanding into Dylan Field:

And John Palmer rightly emphasizes something special: the lack of someone who can say “no”, as people try to figure out how to make Loot great:

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