The first pixelated Nouns character with a fox head adorned with pink glasses was sold on August 8, 2021 for 613.37 ETH. Since then, the collection has raised an astronomical sum of 27,885 ETH, or $45,237,380.00 (according to the official website on 02.28.2023).
Many attribute the project’s success to its pioneering nature, although Nouns was not a pioneer in the field of 2D pixel NFT art. But unlike its famous predecessors CryptoPunks and BAYC, it attracted the community’s attention with two exclusive features, that is, open-source IP and a unique token distribution technology.
Nouns NFT images have quickly taken over both virtual and physical spaces. They can be found not only on OpenSea, but also on coffee cups and beer cans, toys and stickers, in commercials and feature films. They have become so popular that even their mini-copies from the derivative Lil Nouns collection are enjoying unprecedented popularity.
So how did the Nouns collection achieve instant recognition and lead to the creation of a multi-million dollar brand? Our review will help answer this question, which many NFT fans are interested in.
Nouns Official Links
- Official site https://nouns.wtf
- Twitter @nounsdao – over 77k followers,
- Discord @nouns – over 13k participants.
What are Nouns?
Nouns is a collection of generative PFP tokens produced on the Ethereum blockchain (ERC-721 standard). Each of them is an avatar of a person, place or object with a 32 x 32 px humanoid image.
Now let’s note what makes Nouns fundamentally different from most other NFT projects and makes it groundbreaking:
- Every 24 hours one token is generated (by the number of Nouns you can determine the age of the project). As of today, there are 635 tokens.
- Each generated token is put up for a 24-hour auction. Closing another auction automatically triggers a transaction to produce another unique Noun token. The generation process is resumed again and again until infinity.
- All profits from the auction go to the project treasury.
- Noun tokens are stored in the scarce blockspace, the most secure layer of the ETH blockchain.
- All items of the collection are equally rare, no shortage of attributes is created.
Each Noun gives its owner the right to vote when decisions are made in the Nouns DAO. Owning two Nouns allows you to make suggestions to the community of collectors.
Because the Nouns project is CC0-licensed, token art design is in the public domain. The founders of the collection relinquish all intellectual property rights. Therefore, any holder can use their investment and collection assets for any purpose, including commercial purposes.
Nouns in numbers
- The collection was released in August 2021.
- One token is generated every 24 hours (the age of the project can be determined by the number of Nouns). To date, there are 635 of them.
- The total volume of secondary sales exceeded 27k ETH (over $45M according to the official website).
- The floor price is 33 ETH, what is quite crazy (about $52k).
- Average sales range from 26 ETH to 35 ETH.
- The most expensive #40 was sold on October 28, 2021 for 200 ETH ($785k at the time of sale).
- A total of 389 unique holders (61%). This shows the low chances of whales interconnection within the project. Thus, the risk of artificial project management from the inside is minimal.
- Only about 1% of the collection (8 pieces out of 635) are for sale, among them the offers range from 33 ETH to 1,000 ETH. This shows that almost all holders see the project as a great investment prospect and are not in a hurry to part with their assets at a lower price.
Data (including exchange rates) are given at the time of publication (March 6, 2023)
Nouns types and attributes
The algorithm on which the Nouns protocol is based generates one token per day with a random combination of attributes:
- Background (2);
- Body (30);
- Head (242);
- Accessories (140).
Some of the attributes impress with quirky designs, such as a head in the shape of a flamingo, a flip calendar, a needle, an airplane, a skateboard, or a rainy cloud. That said, each character has recognizable Noggles glasses. This signature Nouns attribute is available in 23 versions.
Who founded Nouns?
One of the founders of the collection is well known to the public. This is Dom Hofmann, co-founder of Vine and founder of the acclaimed NFT project Loot (for Adventurers). The other nine founders of the project prefer to stay in the shadows, presenting themselves on Twitter with fictitious names:
- @gremplin (founder of the top NFT project CrypToadz);
How was Nouns created?
On June 1, 2021, Punk4156 posted a tweet in which he shared the idea of a new avatar project and asked top-notch Solidity developers and NFT artists to join him.
If we tried to assemble an all-star DAO to build a new avatar project, are there top-tier solidity devs who would be interested? Given the community, participation of world-class artists seems very likely. Can we find world-class developers too?
— 4156 (@punk4156) June 1, 2021
The idea was warmly supported by the community, after which Punk4156 described the structure of Nouns in a series of subsequent tweets. Soon an initiative group of 10 people was formed (later called Nounders). On August 17, 2021, they formed the Nouns DAO while working together through Discord. This organization became the governing body of the art project based on Punk4156’s sketches.
Core values of the Nouns community are as follows:
- transparency in relationships,
- innovation in creativity,
- the power of cooperation,
- the public good.
When distributing profits from the NFTs, the priority is to care for social initiatives, whether naming a new amphibian species or providing charitable support.
The first organizations listed as recipients of financial support (5 ETH each) from the Nouns DAO on September 2, 2021 were:
- Coral Restoration Foundation;
- Give Crypto;
- Rainforest Foundation US;
- Freedom Of The Press Foundation;
- Tor Project;
- Internet Archive.
By sponsoring the most interesting and unique projects, the Nouns DAO expects to increase the recognition of the created brand and expand the circle of its adherents.
Why are Nouns expensive?
As of March 6, 2023, the minimum value of tokens on OpenSea is 33 ETH. This is quite expensive, which can be explained by the small supply, which was limited to 635 units as of that date. Let’s not forget that the Nouns mining rate is 1 NFT per day, and the collection was launched in August 2021.
However, there is good news for future investors. First, as collectible tokens increase, their value will decrease. A year ago, the price of the cheapest Noun was 79 ETH. Today it’s two times lower.
Other reasons for the high cost of the collection include:
- Innovative nature of distribution;
- IP concept, providing for open source code;
- Brand promotion.
The decentralized nature of the project does not imply the development of a clear roadmap. The development of Nouns is determined by the suggestions of collectors approved by the voters. Most of these proposals are aimed at expanding the Nouns IP.
The most significant completed stages are as follows:
- Performances at public events such as New York Fashion Week;
- Financing the release of branded Noggles glasses;
- Donations to Web3 educational projects;
- Creation of Nouns mobile application;
- Participation in advertising Bud Light beer during Super Bowl-2022;
- Sponsoring the feature film Calladita with the condition that Nouns appear on the screen during the screening;
- The participation of 6 costumed Nouns characters in the 134th Rose Parade, attracting typically more than 30 million viewers (this project was proposed by Stoopid Buddy Stoodios co-founded by actor Seth Green, and it was implemented on January 2, 2023);
- Creation and promotion of NFT’s first-ever consumer brand, Nouns Coffee.
The team plans also have approved projects that are underway:
- Signing a contract with Titan Comics that will result in the publication of six issues of Nouns: Nountown beginning in April 2023.
- Preparing for the launch of Otherside Metaverse, a game project from Yuga Labs using 3D characters (in March 2022, Yuga Labs released a trailer showing the storyline featuring Nouns).
It is difficult to say how the Nouns DAO will be reorganized in the future. For now, it is still run from a central governing body, the Nouns Foundation (and its members are Nounders), established by the company’s founders. Nounders have the power to veto proposals they believe “pose non-trivial legal or existential risks” to the organization. In the future, after a test period of five years from the company’s founding, it is planned to transfer intellectual property rights to members of the Nouns community.
The ecosystem of the project has managed to form a strong internal community based on the DAO, which organically creates an infrastructure around the main collection.
The Nouns DAO
The center of the Nouns ecosystem is the Nouns DAO, a kind of exclusive club open to holders of Nouns tokens.
Each NFT gives its owner the right to vote when decisions are made in the Nouns DAO. Owning two Nouns allows you to make suggestions to the collector community. Nounders control a multi-sig wallet (which receives every 10th Noun from tokens issued within the first 5 years).
Playground is an online constructor that can be used to experiment outside the blockchain with various attributes stored in the protocol.
The Nouns ecosystem includes over 150 projects that are derived from the main NFT collection. Such a rich ecosystem was created not by the organizers of the project, but by its enthusiasts. This is made possible by the open source code and CC0 license.
The most popular derivatives projects include:
- 3D Nouns is the first derivative collection that includes composite characters that turn 2D pixel avatars into 3D pictures. Secondary sales to date have totaled 9 ETH.
- Lil Nouns is a collection of generative digital art objects created by @adelidusiam and @0xsvg. In style, structure, and minting contract, Lil Nouns are scaled-down versions of Nouns. They are auctioned every 15 minutes. Secondary sales to date are 0.05 ETH and the floor price is 0.05 ETH.
- NounPunks are a group of hybrid creatures that incorporate the characteristics of two popular cultural worlds, SuperGremplin and Larva Labs. To date, the volume of secondary sales is 1244 ETH and the floor price is 0.0184 ETH.
- Animated Nouns are Nouns tokens animated by means of animation, each with a unique character and mannerisms. The current secondary sales volume is 54 ETH and the floor price is 0.2 ETH.
NounsTown Shop is a branded online store with the ability to purchase branded merchandise (glasses, t-shirts, hoodies, stickers, notepads and more).
How much do Nouns cost?
The collection was released in August 2021. Since then, one token has been generated every 24 hours (the age of the project can be determined by the number of Nouns). To date, there are 635 of them. How has the project evolved since then in terms of pricing?
To visualize the price dynamics, we made a slice of the average price for 1 NFT:
- in November 2021: 120 ETH,
- in January 2022: 77 ETH,
- in April 2022: 78 ETH,
- in October 2022: 57 ETH,
- in December 2022: 39 ETH.
Now (March 6, 2023) the minimum price is 33 ETH. On average, the latest sales range from 26 to 35 ETH. And the total volume of secondary sales amounted to more than 27k ETH (about $45 million according to the official website).
The Most Expensive Sales of Nouns
The most expensive sales are led by the following NFTs from the Nouns collection:
- #40 was sold on October 28, 2021 for 200 ETH ($785k at the time of sale),
- #25 was sold on July 3, 2022 for 200 ETH ($214k at the time of sale),
- #293 was sold on July 28, 2022 for 147 ETH ($168k at the time of sale),
- #31 was sold on May 29, 2022 for 135.42 ETH ($245k at the time of sale).
Where to buy Nouns?
Currently, Nouns can only be purchased on the secondary market, on marketplaces such as OpenSea, X2Y2 and LooksRare.
How to buy Nouns?
- Remember that initially you need to connect your crypto wallet with self-storage to the marketplace of your choice.
- Next, find the official collection using the search bar on the marketplace.
- Analyze and choose the NFT you want to buy; click on it and then on the “Buy” button.
- Or you can bet on the token you like. Make sure you leave enough ETH for gas or transaction fees. If the seller approves your bid, the deal goes through.
Should you invest in Nouns?
Nouns is an innovative project that supports interesting initiatives in both virtual and real space. If you are the kind of investor who appreciates such activities, consider Nouns an ideal choice for you.
For inspiration, let’s list the investment benefits of this NFT project:
- The CC0-license of the Nouns DAO opens access to the project’s assets for any user and commercialization.
- The organization’s treasury has already collected about $46 million (in ETH), and the entire amount is intended for the “long-term growth and prosperity of the project”. It is worth noting that all revenues from sales go to the treasury only.
- The parent collection and its derivatives create a wealth of resources in which advanced Web3, metaverse, and DeFi application developers are interested.
- Project partners are major market players such as Bud Light (manufacturer of the most expensive beer in the world), Titan Comics (publisher of such world-famous licensed comics as The Simpsons, Sandman, Star Wars), Yuga Labs (NFT industry leader, creator of the grandiose game project Otherside Metaverse, Bored Ape Yacht Club, Mutant Ape Yacht Club, Bored Ape Kennel Club).
- Further integration of characters into Otherside, which includes an extremely limited number of only top NFT projects.
- Among the creators is the well-known influencer Dom Hofmann, founder of the NFT project Loot which is also recognized by the community as innovative one in the market. The very fact that one of the creators is doxxed and has a well-known name causes increased loyalty and trust from the community.
- Open source code.
In any case, do your own in-depth analysis and research when investing in NFTs, and then make your own decision.
Opinion of NFTmetria
Nouns is an exclusive project and one of the most recognizable in today’s NFT space. Thanks to the process of daily mining, the number of funny pixel humanoids is constantly increasing along with the expansion of their fan base. The system of controlled collective management does not fail and protects against risks.
For many NFT connoisseurs, the Nouns DAO has become the epitome of the true spirit of advanced blockchain technology. The decentralized project offers the opportunity for any owner to contribute to a common cause and reap the benefits.
That’s why NFT avatars have become a must-have for both start-ups and leading brands like Bud Light. They serve as passes to the exclusive ecosystem of the Nouns DAO with strict adherence to the key principle “One Noun, every day, forever”.