CrypToadz is the name of an NFT project available on OpenSea.io. It’s another of a particular type of NFT, where the project is described in terms of a story, with the purchase and ownership of the NFT advancing the story.
What makes CrypToadz unique is that this project is advertised as being 100% in the public domain, meaning that the artwork, backstory, and derivative rights are all basically up for grabs.
Gremplin is an artist who is likely most visible for their work on Nouns NFT avatars, and like many such artists we discuss here, Gremplin became active in the crypto space in 2021 but made a big impression early on. Nouns had a similar feature in common with CrypToadz; all the NFT “characters” were released into the public domain.
This is said, among Nouns enthusiasts, to make the NFTs all 100% unique (at least potentially) due to the program’s lack of specific rules for “attribute scarcity”.
For the new project, Gremplin’s artwork needed a larger team to help bring it to the world; he had already achieved some $50 million worth of success with Nouns, and with CrypToadz the artist was likely not fully prepared for the swampy creatures’ popularity.
But efforts like this require a larger number of helping hands to keep the project on track. And as we’ll learn below some of those hands are social media influencers who love NFTs.
How popular was the original run of CrypToadz? They are all sold out and at press time new versions are not available. You can purchase one of these NFTs on the secondary market, where they trade for 2.5 ETH at the time of this writing. Exactly 6969 of the NFTs were created and the artist made themselves part of the “story” of these NFTs.
The official site describes CrypToadz as “small amphibious creatures trying to escape the tyrannical rule of the Evil King Gremplin” and it’s an interesting riff on similar NFT projects with storylines.
Gremplin making themselves the Evil King isn’t the only bit of whimsy you’ll find in this project, with the story including mention of the “Evil King Gremplin” asserting his authority over all CrypToadz. Buying one is to “liberate” it and help the creatures escape the clutches of the Evil King.
CrypToadz were released as a “stealth drop” without publicity or hype from the project itself. Yet, CrypToadz are being bought, sold, and traded for ETH. Why are people buying and selling these NFTs when they are officially available for anyone to do anything they want with the images? Some say the public domain aspect is one of the project’s keys to its success.
CrypToadz’s approach here is defined as an “open garden” project rather than a “walled garden”. Allowing public use of the NFTs (there have already been forks of CrypToadz unrelated to the original project) means the visibility of the artwork is potentially higher. But there’s another reason why this particular project caught on aside from Gremplin’s existing popularity and attention.
CrypToadz got some very influential word of mouth from the likes of Punk4156, (who founded Nouns) and the artist known as Beanie, founder of the PUNKS comic project. Two high-profile thumbs up for an NFT project is sure to generate some interest in the right sectors.
Gremplin has been quoted as indicating that the artist isn’t trying to create a big push for the latest NFTs; one interview has the artist questioning what the success of the project means in the context of being an artist in general. But whatever comes next for Gremplin, the fan base is certainly there.
Joe Wallace has covered real estate and financial topics, including crypto and NFTs since 1995. His work has appeared on Veteran.com, The Pentagon Channel, ABC and many print and online publications. Joe is a 13-year veteran of the United States Air Force and a former reporter for Air Force Television News.