Non-fungible tokens have taken the world by storm in recent years, reaching a cultural phenomenon status. With thousands of NFT projects on the market already and many more appearing on a daily basis, it's safe to say the NFT industry is on an unstoppable ascending path.
The question that arises is how do you cut through the noise and choose the right NFT project to invest in? When there are so many options, how do you discern the best upcoming NFT projects from ones with no value? How do you avoid choice paralysis? We've compiled a list of the best new NFT projects, as well as already popular ones, to give you some guidance in the NFT space. Of course, these are our personal picks, and you can further research the subject.
What is an NFT project?
As you know by now, NFTs are non-interchangeable units of data stored in a blockchain that give the holder full ownership rights over them. An NFT project is a unique collection of crypto assets that combine digital art with utility and proof of ownership. NFT art, in general, is done on a smaller scale than the NFT projects. Individual NFT artists can make small digital art collections that they sell on the NFT marketplaces, while big studios or organizations create NFT projects and trade them on their own crypto platforms.
How to choose a good project from the NFT marketplace
So what should you look for when choosing a new NFT project worth your coins?
NFT utility: Owning a non-fungible token can bring more utility than just ownership over a piece of art. It could give you special access to an event and exclusive in-person memberships, help you advance your gameplay, level up your avatar in P2E gaming, or provide you with ownership rights over virtual plots of land.
NFT community: The bigger the community behind an NFT project, the more hype there will be around it. And we all know hype creates more chances for a digital asset to appreciate in value. NFT investors should always double-check the popularity of a project, as well as its utility.
Top NFT projects for 2022
Not all new projects have both utility and the potential for future development. We've selected what we believe to be the best NFT projects of 2022 based on their art, use-case, popularity, and future investment opportunities.
2. Bored Ape Yacht Club - Extremely popular NFT project from Yuga Labs
3. Mutant Ape Yacht Club - New Yuga Labs project following in BAYC's footsteps
4. Axie Infinity - Popular play-to-earn and NFT game
5. Cool Cats - New NFT project with real-world meetups
6. Decentraland - Top NFT project with amazing potential
7. CryptoPunks - One of the first NFT projects on the Ethereum blockchain
8. Art Blocks - Non-fungible tokens collection with customizable NFT art
9. Azuki - Japanese-style anime NFT collection from Chiru Labs
10. The Sandbox - Well-known play-to-earn NFT game
11. Flyfish club - world’s first NFT member’s only private dining club by Gary Vaynerchuk
12. Phanta Bear - Asian NFT project by Ezek Club
13. Battle Infinity - NFT blockchain gaming ecosystem with 6 unique platforms
14. Crypto Kitties - One of the first NFT collections ever created
15. The Forest - New project & educational platform for NFT creators
Must-have NFT collections - a closer look
Now that we've gone through a quick overview of what the NFT market has to offer, let's explore each project on its own, so we can take a closer look at these digital assets and understand why they are the creme-de-la-creme of the NFT world. Ready to immerse ourselves into the best NFT projects of this year?
Win Heroes NFT collection
The forthcoming play-to-earn gaming platform Win.app combines mobile eSports games with crypto rewards and NFTs. The project aims to introduce to the digital world the Win realm, the proprietary ecosystem where the Win Heroes reside. Each Hero NFT is a digital asset that combines the features, looks, and skills of three ancient tribes, consisting of twelve classes each: the Paios, the Bere, and the Miger. NFT holders will earn might points through actions within the Win Realm, which determine the level of the Hero. The mightier the Hero becomes, the more the player can advance through the ecosystem. There is a clear utility to these non-fungible tokens, as they can bring greater staking rewards, special access to limited tournaments, and one-of-a-kind NFT collectibles that one can easily trade or sell for crypto in the NFT marketplaces.
Bored Ape Yacht Club
The Bored Ape Yacht Club needs no introduction. It's one of the most famous NFT projects, featuring a unique collection of cartoon apes that combine different attributes and rarity levels. BAYC NFT owners can pay at least 82 ETH at the time of writing this article for one NFT character. The limited-supply NFTs ( only 10.000) dropped in April 2021 with a 1 ETH floor price. Due to its rapid growth, it's considered one of the industry's fastest appreciating new NFT projects. As another building block to its fame, or maybe due to it, many famous names like Eminem, Post Malone, and Jimmy Fallon own a BAYC NFT and use it on their social media. More so, Adidas included BAYC as one of the top names in its NFT program, Into the Metaverse, while also buying their own ape NFT. The Bored Ape Yacht Club project also throws exclusive events for its community, such as a private concert featuring The Strokes and Lil Baby in New York City.
Above BAYC (Copyright © Bored Ape Yacht Club)
Mutant Ape Yacht Club
MAYC is an offshoot of the Bored Ape Yacht Club project with 20.000 avatar collectibles that were created as a thank-you gift for the collectors that purchase NFTs from the main project. The owners were given a mutant serum to transform their existing trading cards into the new mutated creatures. At the time of writing in August 2022, the floor price for such an NFT is 15-16 ETH.
Above Mutant Ape Yacht Club ( Source: nftsstreet.com)
This P2E game revolves around Axies, NFT collectibles that users breed, raise, trade, and use for battles against other players. Users can sell NFTs to obtain AXS tokens that give governance rights within the game. These little creatures have utility within the Ethereum-based blockchain game and can be traded on the Axie marketplace. Axie Infinity also has a strong community, especially in Southeast Asia, where many players turned the game into a passive income source.
Above Axie Infinity (Copyright © Axie Infinity)
Many NFT projects are cool, but this one is cool, and it has cats! The Cool Cats NFT collection features 9,999 randomly generated, stylistically curated cat-based NFTs built upon the Ethereum blockchain. Currently, they can only be used as profile pictures. Still, their utility is expanding to access exclusive events like NFT mints, giveaways, and their usage in "Cooltopia," a gamified ecosystem where players will interact with each other, battle, and complete quests to earn the project's native token, $ MILK. The project also aims to implement a housing system to allow players to build houses in the game. Another cool feat is CooltopiaNYC, a real-world event where the community was able to meet and get their hands on exclusive Cool Cats merchandise.
Above Cool Cats ( Copyright © Cool Cats)
Everybody's heard about Decentraland. It's a virtual world project structured as a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO), giving the users complete control over governance issues. Players can create their own avatars and buy in-game real estate. The Decentraland NFTs include virtual plots of land (LAND), clothes, cosmetics, and more. The Decentraland marketplace allows users to make NFT sales in the world's native token, MANA. Due to the game's growth and endless future potential, many investors include MANA in their investment portfolio.
Above Decentraland (Copyright © Decentraland.org)
CryptoPunks were created back in 2017 by Larva Labs for Ethereum. The collection includes 10.000 8-bit punk heads with different attributes and characteristics. The most common are male and female humans, with other rare and expensive punk species, like Alien Punks, Ape Punks or Zombie Punks. CryptoPunks is considered one of the most expensive NFT projects, with the current floor price for a punk being almost 74 ETH.
Above Larva Labs: CryptoPunks (Copyright © Larva Labs)
Lovers of the art world have a project created especially for them. Art Blocks is a generative art NFT project where artists can employ blockchain technology to bring together digital elements, creating mesmerizing virtual artworks. The project uses NFT drops, where the users mint the non-fungible tokens without knowing the type of digital art they will receive in the end. The entire space is curated, so not all generated pieces end up on Art Blocks.
Above Art Blocks (Copyright © Art Blocks)
This Japanese-style anime collection gives holders access to "The Garden," a Metaverse corner where digital creators can meet and share ideas, with the current focus of building a decentralized future. Azuki uses its virtual characters and partnerships for streetwear collaborations, additional NFT drops, and eventual live events.
Above Azuki (Copyright © Azuki)
The Sandbox is a virtual world, similar to Decentraland, where players can own NFT real-estate as virtual plots of LAND that can be linked together to form an ESTATE. Once a player owns a piece of LAND, they can populate it with Games and Assets, tokens created by the players to form an interactive experience. Users can also trade NFTs for profit or exchange for other land plots.
Above The Sandbox (Copyright © The Sandbox)
This NFT project from Gary Vaynerchuck grants its members private access to an exclusive 10.000 square feet dining club in New York. 2.5 ETH can bring you a standard Flyfish membership, while with 4.25 ETH, a member can access the Flyfish Omasake membership, including the Omasake room. The standard membership allows members to bring up to 8 non-member guests, while the Omasake membership comes with the same perks, plus the possibility to bring one guest to the Omasake room. Seeing how the membership is an NFT, it means it can be leased or resold at any moment, just like you would trade a token.
Phanta Bear is a project founded by Ezek Club and backed up by Taiwanese performer Jay Chou and his fashion brand PHANTACi. The 10.000 bear collectibles allow owners access to both the exclusive Ezek Club and the Matrix World, a metaverse project from Matrix Labs. On top of that, holders can enjoy virtual concerts and interactions between the bears as the owners' personalities within the digital space. It's made our best NFT projects list due to its amazing artwork, vivid colors, cute bears, and fun utility. It has what it needs to become one of the top NFT projects this year.
Above Phanta Bear (Copyright © Ezek Club)
Next up, we have a play-to-earn game that shows great potential. The concept features six unique platforms specialized in a different part of the crypto universe: IBAT Premier league (a fantasy sports league), IBAT Battle Swap (a decentralized exchange), IBAT Battle Market (NFT marketplace), IBAT Battle Games (P2E gaming platform), IBAT Battle Area (immersive Metaverse with upgradable avatars), and last but not least, IBAT Battle Stake (a staking platform with multiple ways to earn). Due to its numerous utilities, Batte Infinity is gaining quite a following on its Discord channel and Telegram.
Cats are so cool (pun intended) that our list includes two projects that involve them. Crypto Kitties is an Ethereum-based game that involves non-fungible kittens. Players can collect and breed these furballs and sell them for fiat currencies. Since its debut in 2017, the game has built a large community around itself, with numerous players earning large sums of money from simply selling their in-game kittens.
Above Crypto Kitties (Copyright © Crypto Kitties)
The last entry in our top is an upcoming platform called The Forest, empowering creatives to take charge of Web 3 spaces. The guardians of this forest are "Noctura," owl-like avatars that guide users through their journey in the digital realm. Another interesting feature of this platform is that it's environmentally conscious. For every transaction made on The Forest, their partner, OneTreePlanted.org, plants a series of trees in the real world.
Above Noctura (Copyright © The Forest)
Final thoughts on the best NFT projects
We've reached the end of our deep dive into the NFT universe, and we hope some of these projects have sparked your interest, as they are indeed one-of-a-kind. This article should not be considered investment advice, as the ultimate investment decision should be yours. If you liked our list, investigate these collections further to find your favorite. We have to admit we like them all, and we're excited to see what other new NFT projects might emerge this year.
And even if you can't afford Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs ( most of us don't), don't get discouraged. You might find the next NFT sensation and buy your tokens before the project reaches stardom status and the prices explode. Here's to wishful thinking and always staying in the loop and ahead of the trends when it comes to the crypto space and non-fungible tokens.
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