BitDaemons and the DaemonPunks: A study in 24x24 and the perils of going dev-less
GM everyone! LuckyLuciano here again — y’all know I love writing long-form nonsense so let’s straight get to it! Today I wanna talk about the BitDaemons/DaemonDAO project and our latest NFT collection: DaemonPunks
As we all now know, the BitDaemon mass-transit event was violently interrupted by an as-yet unidentified force. Of the thousands that attempted passage, just 345 BitDaemons successfully transited to the Fantom, where they now reside safely in the care of the DaemonDAO. Far from gone however, it appears that remnant subroutines of some destroyed BitDaemons latched onto the blockchain — corrupting the seminal NFT collection CryptoPunks.
DaemonPunks are a collection of 345 handmade punks that will be minted exclusively on the Fantom blockchain and sold via its leading marketplaces. In a nod to the Punk project that started it all, we decided to doggedly adhere to the 24 x 24 OG punk pixel format, and see how far we could take it with a collection of sick, handcrafted NFTs bursting with personality and Daemonic influence — an attempt at the least-derivative derivative ever. As a fun touch, we name each Punk, and add attributes that handmade collections usually lack:
- Body refers to the base Punk template we started from for each (The OG punk collection has just two, male & female). We decided to swap male and female naming out for Standard and Small (so we wouldn’t be restricted by gender on each base), added in Tall (internally referred to as the TombHead) and Broad, a larger, wider head base that basically allowed us more room on the face to work with! As the collection progressed, we added more base templates (Apes etc) to better ID ‘rarer’ designs.
- Chill-o-meter is a measure of how chill the Punk appears by eye, entirely at our discretion. Chill as a cucumber is the max, Incapable of chill is the min.
- Daemonic corruption is once again determined by eye, a rough metric of how many BitDaemon-like attributes the Punk has (glowing eyes, headpieces and mouthpieces etc.)
- Stability refers to whether the Punk is animated (unstable) or animated (stable) — roughly 10% of the DaemonPunk collection are animated!
- Finally, Fave Coin is a mostly non-visual attribute — we gave each Punk a favourite crypto coin — generally ones available on Fantom! We say ‘mostly non-visual’ as some are a nod to the Punk designs themselves — we make a ghostly punk, you know its favourite coin is likely $SPIRIT or $GEIST.
The collection was first intended as a gift to members of the DaemonDAO: the holders of our genesis collection BitDaemons — retrospective rumination on the creation process of that generative collection made us realise that the most fun we’ve had in our NFT journey was when myself and ArcAyn were sat in a room with a couple of beers and a laptop each creating the 1/1 handmade BitDaemon rares. The logical progression followed: what if we made a purely handmade follow-up that benefits OG BitDaemon holders as our early roadmaps promised?
DaemonPunks was therefore created with two thoughts in mind — every OG BitDaemon holder will receive an airdropped DaemonPunk, and a sizeable percentage of sales and secondary market royalties (40%) would go straight to the DaemonDAO treasury. It’s a point of pride that we’re not aware of any other NFT project that’s airdropped a handmade collection to holders of a generative — we consider this an early demonstration of how committed we are to both the project and those who have generously supported it. We also realised that while Punk collections are abundant on every chain, we have a chance to be by far the most unique and eye-catching — with an accessible price point.
The release approach
We released the first 20 DaemonPunks fairly under-the-radar: no marketing campaign, no collab giveaways, no announcements at all really outside the holders-only channel in our Discord server. We thought if we’re gunna do punks, we may as well be punk as fuck in the approach. To our surprise, each was snapped up in seconds following listing. The same occurred for our next release of 25, and that’s when we began to get communications from (understandably) frustrated community members who liked the collection but felt it would be hard to secure one due to IRL commitments, slow internet speeds etc. that disadvantaged them in fastest-finger marketplace drops.
For Punk release III, we decided to try something different — put offers down on the 30 punks available at a flat rate, and we’ll go through and randomly accept one offer on each. A winning wallet address is excluded from subsequent selections. This was received much more kindly, but we discovered in the aftermath that some people had created multiple wallets and successfully purchased more than 1 Punk for themselves. Due to the nature of the NFTKey offer system, this was impossible to screen for before (as full wallet addresses are not visible). Alright then, we move…
Punk release IV was a turning point — 34 Punks up for sale at a flat rate, and this time we’d randomly pick people, not wallet addresses! We hosted a live event in the BitDaemons discord, revealed Punks 2 at a time (Noah’s Ark-style) and ran a giveaway bot to determine who would have first dibs on purchasing each Punk. While this was going on, we hosted a voice chat where we talked about the inspiration behind each piece as we presented it, auctionhouse-style. Despite some small technical hiccups, it was a real fun experience for us, we got some excellent feedback (plus a few suggestions for the next one) and most importantly, 34 Punks went to happy new home.
As I write this, we prepare for Punk release V, the biggest release there has been and will ever be (due to the total supply of the collection). At least 50 Daemonpunks will be allocated for sale at a flat rate in a live event on Sunday 6th March in our Discord server that kicks off at 6pm UTC. We’ve got a couple of sneaky surprises in store for attendees too! After the event, there’ll be ~70 Punks to go before the collection of 345 is complete, release methods TBD but coming very soon.
Final thoughts & the future
In summary, what began as a fun side collection for DaemonDAO members has become so much more thanks to the huge enthusiasm and support the community has shown us. We initially planned no utility for DaemonPunks beyond being a dope collectible, but we pledge now that they will remain integral to the ever-expanding Daemon ecosystem and holders will see benefits down the line. OG BitDaemon holders shouldn’t worry though, BitDaemons are and will always remain the sole DaemonDAO membership ticket. The main DaemonPunk flex will always be the art/vibe, we want crosschainers checking out NFTKey to type in ‘punk’, see our collection and think “Fuck me, Fantom’s wild”. We also hope that documenting the challenges, successes & pitfalls of going dev-less above will help other creators considering similar approaches!
As always, when it comes to our future releases please bear with us. The Daemon team consists of just two members (ArcAyn and I) doing the creative side, the socials side, the contract side, the DAO organisation, everything. We're not able to deliver at the pace of larger-scale projects like PotluckLabs due to this, but we aim to keep bringing quality to the table with each successive release, expanding the DaemonDAO’s positive influence on the community and bringing value back to our holders first and foremost. If you’ve been with us since the start, you know how we graft. And of course, if you’d like a status update then pop into our Discord server and ask in chat, we’ll be as transparent as possible about where we’re at!
As a final word, in light of recent events (scams & rugs that are increasingly prevalent on Fantom as our chain gets more of the attention it deserves) I’d like to address the issue of trust in the community. It’s clearer than ever that we all need to be more careful which teams & projects we invest in. If something looks too good to be true, it probably is! If you’re unsure, reach out to trusted community members who’ve been around a while (though sometimes even the most experienced of us can be deceived too!). Off-topic chat is welcome in all BitDaemon Discord server channels, come by if you’d like to get ours and our community’s opinions on something!
Regarding our team/project specifically, I won’t say ‘trust us we’re different’, but I will say if you’re interested in our output then keep an eye out, watch what we do, how we conduct ourselves and perhaps we’ll earn your trust over time.
I’ll finish this one like I finished the last article I put out: fuuuuck me that’s a lot of reading, sincerely well done for making it this far! Huge thanks to those who’ve supported us and if you like the sound of all this jump in our Discord, follow us on Twitter and come join the DaemonPunk Legion and the DaemonDAO.
Oh, and don’t miss Punk Release V (on Sunday 6th March, 6pm UTC): this is the best chance there has been and will ever be to secure a Punk before the collection is complete and secondary market takes pricing out of our hands. Click here for the event link.
LuckyLuciano & ArcAyn