GM, everyone! Let's get into the NFT news from the week ☀️
Starbucks Odyssey 👾
The Ethereum "Merge" and What It Means for NFTs 🔄
Epic Games Store Launches First NFT Game 🕹️
ABCs of NFTs - J is for J-Curve ✨
Coffee's NFT Odyssey
We've talked about Starbucks NFTs for a while now. You may even think we're obsessed with this project at this point. Well, you may be right, and we're not done talking about it yet. This past week, Starbucks formally announced their NFT project that's been in the works for well over a year. The project is called Starbucks Odyssey.
First of all, I think "odyssey" might be one of my favorite words. I love how it sounds, how it looks, and, of course, everything it implies — an adventure, a search for the unknown, or a mysterious journey in faraway lands. A perfect name for a project that will turn the business world on its head.
So what is Odyssey? →
In their Odyssey press release, Starbucks refers to the program as an "extension of their industry-leading rewards program."
People enrolled in Starbucks' Rewards program can participate in interactive, virtual games that award NFT "stamps" that unlock access to new benefits and "immersive coffee experiences."
Starbucks also plans on releasing limited-edition stamps on the open market to buy, trade, and sell. Both in-game and marketplace "stamps" will have differing levels of rarity. Collecting stamps gives users a chance to win real-life rewards like access to online coffee education classes, unique merchandise and artist collaborations, and even invitations to exclusive events at Starbucks Reserve Roasteries or trips to Starbucks coffee farms abroad. The more stamps you have, the better the rewards.
Our take →
To be as frank as we can, Odyssey is an awesome project, and we can't wait to see how the project looks once released. Starbucks' current rewards program already has an uber-active user base, so this project is almost guaranteed to hit the ground running. Gamifiying rewards programs with NFTs is a huge opportunity for brands because it unites the brand community, differentiates them from the competition, and rewards users for their loyalty.
If you're a Starbucks Rewards user, you can sign up for the waitlist today.
The ETH Merge and What It Means for NFTs
This was a big week in crypto land, specifically in the Ethereum world, with "the merge" of the Ethereum Blockchain moving from "Proof-of-Work" to "Proof-of-Stake." Check out this article for more info on POW and POS.
It's tough to explain this one without getting too technical, and we don't like technical at The Mint, but think of the merge as a system upgrade to Ethereum. In 2004, I was a freshman at Luther College running the Mac OS on my first MacBook called Panther. Panther was cool, but sophomore year along came Tiger, and I made that sweet upgrade from Mac OS 10.3 to 10.4. That's sort of what the merge is. Some bugs have been fixed, there are some new features, and the foundation is laid for more upgrades in the future.
We focus on NFTs at The Mint, so what does the merge mean for our jpegs? →
The biggest change is the amount of energy consumption. Now on proof-of-stake, energy consumption will reduce by over 95% on the Ethereum blockchain. So, you can tell that friend who yells at you for hurting the planet with your Moonbird that his argument is now moot (not speaking from experience here).
There is also a theory that the merge could be the instigator for a new bull run which would increase the price of not just ETH, but your NFTs too. We'll see if this happens. Thus far, ETH has been namely flat since the merge and the macroeconomic conditions may prove to be too strong of headwinds for any bull run.
Epic Games Store's First NFT Game
The Epic Games Store has a new game, and it uses NFTs. 🤟
Blankos Blok Party is "a vibrant open-world multiplayer game styled like a giant block party, with a focus on custom art and design, building and exploration and curating your collection of unique and rare Blankos." The game was produced by Mythical Games, a prominent web3 game producer, and heavily relies on NFTs.
This announcement comes after the CEO of Epic Games noted his support for NFTs after the Minecraft controversy two months ago.
After watching this teaser trailer, the Mint Staff was pretty impressed with the game. It looks like Fall Guys (an Epic Games game with over 20 million players) but with an open world, way more customization, and NFTs. Once released, the Blankos game will have a marketplace dedicated to buying and selling in-game items.
This is HUGE.
Gamers pump obscene amounts of time and money into earning in-game items, and this will actually allow people to sell and trade those items in exchange for real money. Bravo, Blankos, and bravo, Epic Games for putting this game into the mainstream.
ABCs of NFTs
J is for J-Curve
Have you ever wondered why crypto tokens go up in price immediately and then taper off for a while before taking off again? If so, we've got a term for you.
Today's term is J-curve, an economic model that helps explain how to value the price of crypto. Chris Burniske created the J-curve model and it’s been helpful for me to think about new tokens.
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That concludes this week's version of The Mint! Thanks for reading, and make sure to share your freshly-minted knowledge with your friends and coworkers.