What is Art Gobblers? What is $GOO? Is it Ape-able?
- Art Gobblers NFTs can fly higher in the short term but may not sustain medium to long-term success.
- If you do not have and cannot afford Art Gobblers, do NOT ape into $GOO.
Art Gobblers singlehandedly lifted NFTs out of the bear market for the past few days.
Soon after its free mint on Oct 31, Art Gobblers' floor price surged close to 15 ETH. A $20k windfall on the books for the minters. Not generational wealth, but it surely beats that $APT airdrop.
After a short dip post-reveal, Art Gobblers enjoyed another 50% increase in floor price, reminding me of the Moonbirds floor chart after minting. If you remember the glorious days, the floor price of Moonbirds jumped from several ETH to over 40 ETH in a matter of days.
Art Gobblers generated an insane amount of trading volume along the way. According to Blur, its lifetime volume has reached 33,531.79 ETH in less than three days. It is such a ridiculous amount that it is on par with Azuki, which launched in the middle of a bull market. For comparison, OpenSea's daily average volume in October was 11,431 ETH.
Needless to say, Art Gobblers has been a wild success so far. But for those on the sidelines, what exactly is Art Gobblers, and what is the game plan going forward? This article will answer these two questions.
What is Art Gobblers?
Art Gobblers is "a digital art experiment" by Justin Roiland and Paradigm. Justin Roiland is best known as the co-creator of the popular show Rick and Morty, while Paradigm is widely regarded as one of the most prominent investors in crypto.
Art Gobblers aims to facilitate the creation and collection of digital art. It is a dynamic ecosystem with three key components, Gobblers, Pages, and $GOO.
Gobbler NFTs are the centerpiece that connects everything. Each Gobbler is an ERC-721 NFT. In addition to its bold appearance, a Gobbler functions as a digital gallery, with its owner being the curator. Gobblers also generate $GOO, which is necessary for summoning more Gobblers and creating Pages. Pages are basically digital canvases (more on this in the next section).
Gobblers, as the name indicates, gobble art. Specifically, after artists create 1/1 art NFTs on Pages, Gobbler owners can feed these art NFTs to their Gobblers. Ownership of the art NFTs transfers on-chain to the Art Gobblers contract, which points to the particular Gobbler to which the art belongs. As a result, the art NFTs become a permanent part of that Gobbler’s belly gallery. If one transfers a Gobbler, all of its gobbled artwork goes with it.
Gobblers have an initial supply of 2,000, 300 of which belong to the core contributors and the rest goes to community members on the mint whitelist. The minting began on October 31. 1,879 pieces have been minted as of November 3.
Over the next ten years, the Art Gobblers smart contract will release an additional 8,000 Gobblers according to a Variable Rate Gradual Dutch Auctions (VRGDA) model (more on this later). In simple words, the project will release roughly 200 Gobblers per month at the beginning, but the rate will slow down over time. 6,343 Gobblers are expected to be released in the first two years.
Similarly to the Nouns model, one in ten newly minted Gobblers will accrue to the team. An additional one in ten will go to a vault to be distributed to the community. This means only 8 out of every 10 newly released Gobblers are for public sale.
There are also Legendary Gobblers and only 10 of them, making them extremely rare. Legendary Gobblers can be minted via burning ordinary Gobblers. The starting price of the first legendary Gobbler is 69 regular Gobblers, whereas the price will decrease over time like a Dutch auction. Each successive Legendary Gobbler will start at 2x the final bid price of the last Legendary Gobbler.
Two addresses own 67 ordinary Gobblers each at the moment. We might witness the birth of the first legendary Legendary Gobbler in no time.
Legendary Gobblers produce $GOO at twice the rate of the combined Gobblers sacrificed to summon them. Suppose one owns 69 Gobblers at the moment and summons a Legendary Gobbler, the amount of $GOO he earns will double.
Art Gobblers provides a drawing tool for community members to create art. Some examples are shown below.
What's cool about Art Gobblers is that the tool records the entire process of creation. For any art piece created via Art Gobblers, one can play back its drawing process stroke by stroke.
Pages are like digital canvases. They can be created using $GOO. Moreover, these drawings can be minted on blank Pages through a process called Glamination and become ERC-721 NFTs.
The initial supply of Pages is zero. The Art Gobblers smart contract currently releases 69 Pages per day, but the rate will slow down along a logistic curve to a constant rate of 10 Pages per day. One in ten newly created Pages will go to a vault to be distributed to the community.
Both Gobblers and Pages are released according to a model called Variable Rate Gradual Dutch Auctions (VRGDA) designed by Paradigm. The mechanism basically allows the project to release its supply close to a pre-determined schedule. VRGDA raises prices when sales are ahead of schedule and lowers prices when sales are behind schedule.
For example, the project targets an initial rate of 69 per day for blank Pages. Pages cost $GOO to mint. If less than 69 Pages are minted on a given day, VRGDA will lower the amount of $GOO required to purchase Pages, and vice versa. Similarly, the price of summoning new Gobblers will depend on the difference between market sales and schedule.
Art Gobblers' issuance schedule is shown below. While Gobblers have a fixed supply of 10,000, the supply of Pages is infinite.
$GOO and GOO
$GOO is the utility token in the Art Gobblers ecosystem, having two uses. It can be burnt to either mint blank Pages or summon new Gobblers.
The project designed a mechanism called Gradual Ownership Optimization (GOO) to ensure that $GOO ownership does not deviate too much from Gobblers NFTs ownership.
When NFT projects issue a fungible token, holders of the NFTs and the tokens tend to diverge over time. Art Gobblers wants to avoid that scenario. Under GOO, the more $GOO a Gobbler has, the faster it generates more $GOO. That is, more and more $GOO will be emitted on a daily basis. This incentivizes Gobbler owners to hold on to $GOO to secure a consistent $GOO flow in the future, because if one owns many Gobblers but little $GOO, his $GOO production will lag behind others.
As a result, holding $GOO without owning Gobbler NFTs is not a smart move, because inflation is real and will outpace demand. $GOO price has already fallen significantly.
Is it Ape-able?
Art Gobblers NFTs can fly higher in the short term, but may not sustain medium to long term success.
On the bright side, Art Gobblers is a project full of promising innovation.
VRGDA helps smooth the supply curve. Many NFT projects in the past suffered from releasing an entire collection of 10,000 pieces or more onto the market at once. Supply overwhelms demand, destroying floor prices as well as community morale. VRDGA is a noticeable upgrade. More and more NFT projects will adopt it, and Art Gobblers will always be remembered as the VRGDA OG.
It is also possible that Art Gobblers will achieve the growth flywheel the team envisioned, fostering a vigorous art community that consistently curates top-notch art, in which case value will be reflected in Gobbler NFT floor price.
In addition, Paradigm's name alone is enough to generate hype and FOMO. Plus the initial supply is limited. The demand/supply dynamic will maintain the project's floor price for the short term.
In the medium to long term, however, Art Gobblers face many challenges that its success may not be sustainable.
First, the project team has made it clear that they will NOT support the project after the mint. There is no roadmap. According to Paradigm, "Art Gobblers will be launched as a finished product...Neither Justin, nor Paradigm, nor the Art Gobblers team plan to build anything net new after the upcoming free mint."
Any early-stage venture needs strong leadership to navigate the dangerous waters of the rapidly changing market environment, so that the community can rally around a central figure for guidance and support during tough times. I wonder if a DAO will be able to fulfill that role.
mfer lost its founder and has been relying on the community for governance. It's remarkable how the community has stayed up together, but their prominence is in no way comparable to when Sartoshi was still around. It is hard to think of any example in which a community leads a project to new heights.
Second, art is a small niche in NFTs. It represents only 7.33% of the NFT market according to NFTGo. While Art Gobblers' gallery model is attractive, its appeal is limited to a small audience. And such limitation is further amplified because Gobblers can only consume art created on Pages. If it can gobble any ERC-721, you could see more interesting plays, such as a Bored Ape Gobbler. Because art is small and requires skill, it is unclear whether Art Gobblers will be able to provide enough content to engage the community and keep them entertained. While gobbling art is a fascinating concept, it still is a simple game mode and can get boring quickly.
Third, only a few paid attention to the art of Gobblers. The most notable case was people making fun of Gobbler #69. The art certainly reflects Justin Roiland's style.
The entire collection is animated. There is a large number of traits so every piece seems unique. But it is debatable whether such a style appeals to the masses.
Art played an important part in most blue-chip NFT projects, including the Bored Ape, Doodles, and Fidenza. Although there were "unique" collections that gained short-term fame, such as Kevin or Goblintown, their popularity was short-lived.
Azuki's art is the primary reason why many holders joined the garden. Azuki shows how art speaks for itself. Despite being a project about art, the art of Art Gobblers may not serve to bond its community together. Some artists may be unwilling to see their hard work end up being in the stomach of the creature above.
When a project is attracting massive attention, it is usually the best time to sell, not to buy. If we look at the history of significant NFT collections (Azuki, Moonbirds, Doodles, etc.), there are usually much better entry points besides immediately after mint.
Similarly, the best game plan is to monitor Art Gobblers closely. The best time to ape in emerges when a major FUD event drops but the fundamentals remain intact.