DAUs of Solana DEXs, Gm.studio Collections, Future of Crypto Gaming

JUL 21, 2022 • 6 Min Read

Adrian Von Catangal Adrian Von Catangal
Disclosure: Delphi Ventures and members of our team are invested in SOL and AVAX. Members of our tea

Chart of The Day: Daily Active Users on DEXs and NFT Marketplaces on Solana

  • Daily active users (DAUs) of DEXs on Solana have declined from 118K on 26th June to 69k (nice!) on 24th July. On the other hand, DAUs of NFT marketplaces on Solana have stayed consistent between 20-40k during the same period.
  • The most significant decline in DAUs of DEXs in the last 30 days occurred after June 26th when active users dropped nearly 26% from 118k to 88k.
  • Solana’s DEX downtrend is primarily due to STEPN moving their DEX from Orca to their own. Orca had a total of 53k DAUs on 26th June, which made up almost half of the Solana DEXs DAUs that day. The following day, Orca’s DAUs dropped 78%, 53k to 13k, which contributed to only 13% of DAUs of these DEXs. More recently, Orca’s DAUs have bounced between the 2k and 3k, while STEPN has seen 30k-65k DAUs within the past week.
  • For more on Solana’s ecosystem, Delphi members can read a Delphi Insights report here.


Otherside’s First Trip Demo & Gen Art Part II (gm.studio & GEN.ART)

[Excerpt from a Delphi Insights report]

  • gm.studio is a relatively new launchpad for generative artists, started in Feb 2022. It aims to be a full-service platform that guides artists through the steps of launching a successful project: from defining the scope, to smart contract deployment and marketing. A curation team comprising 6 resident artists (Tengil, Ike, Rich Poole, Cyber Sea, nodallydude & cxkoda) steers the studio’s art direction.
  • gm.studio is built by gm.DAO, is a community of NFT collectors, artists, and investors, who are passionate about NFTs and art. The DAO comprises 900 members who are holders of the gmDAO NFT. The NFT provides access to the private community and acts as a governance token to vote on the direction of the DAO.

  • So far, there have been 4 collections launched by gm.studio, released at an affordable mint price of 0.15E (~$230) each. While the first collection, Mind The Gap, was not particularly ground-breaking (it appears inspired by Fidenza), gm.studio appears to be finding its artistic direction over time.
  • The most successful collection is arguably Factura by Mathia Isaksen. It is described as an act of balancing pairs of opposing qualities — monolithic and minute, structure & disorder, intricate & plain. Part of the reason for its success could be attributed to its launch during a period of heightened interest in art. Some people have also drawn parallels between Factura and Kjetil Golid’s Archetype, a well-regarded and popular Art Blocks Curated collection.

  • All 4 collections have done quite well on the secondary market with floor prices 2 – 15X from the mint price. Based on the previous history, the cadence of new releases is approximately 1 – 2 months.
  • gm.DAO token holders get 1 guaranteed mint for each collection, so owning a gm.DAO token is one way to avoid missing out. There is usually a raffle or contest for public allowlist spots, so following their Twitter account or joining the Discord server is one way to stay informed of the next art drop.
  • For more information, Delphi members can see read the full Delphi Insights report here.

The Future of (Crypto) Gaming

[Excerpt from a Delphi Pro report]

  • To begin with, it’s worth zooming out and developing a high-level framework for understanding why people are drawn to games to begin with. To start, let’s explore the concept of magic circles, first pioneered by Johan Huizinga way back in his 1938 book Homo Ludens and later expanded upon in the context of gaming by Katie Salen and Eric Zimmerman in their 2003 book Rules of Play: Fundamentals of Game Design.

  • The term magic circle refers to the imaginary boundary between the real world and the game. Reality, with its often unfortunate baggage and constraints, is what many people seek an escape from. A game’s magic circle can offer them this haven. Within a magic circle, seemingly mundane actions can take on extraordinary forms due to the remarkable nature of human imagination.
  • For example, the simple act of kicking a ball into a net can be totally transformed. Perhaps that ball traveling into that net actually represents a winning goal in a World Cup Final. Suddenly, billions of people care and the moment carries with it significant, enduring meaning. The difference here is that it has happened within a magic circle, a shared illusion, that society has placed value in.

  • It might strike you as odd that we used a sports example in a post about video games, but they have far more in common than what sets them apart. Far back in human history, physical sport has been a dominant entertainment medium. It’s appreciated as a great source of meaning all across the world, with an ability to conjure enormous passion and tribalism at a global scale.
  • Sports are respected as people understand the skill involved to truly excel, often having practiced the sport themselves. Moreover, they have undergone thousands of years of evolution to optimize for what people truly enjoy and love in games. The result has been a very particular model for monetizing around games, which we shall explore later.
  • Reverting to the magic circle, it often serves to induce a flow state⁠—a well studied psychological phenomenon which ranges far beyond gaming or sports. It’s the state that emerges in situations of high challenge and high skill.
  • If successful in crafting a compelling magic circle, the player should be so engrossed in the experience that all other needs become negligible. The outside world should necessarily fade into the background. You, dear reader, may well have experienced that sensation of “being in the zone”. It’s what many people enjoy about video games—the true meaning of play.
  • For more, you can read the full Delphi Pro report here.

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