Top 3 Web3 Fails And The Key Lessons We Learn From Them
Everyone in the Web3 community knows that things can change in an instant and make history either as a success or a major Web3 fails. From the fall of FTX to Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter, it’s clear that the volatility of the market isn’t the only thing to worry about. One small thing is all it takes to start a chain reaction in the NFT space. This is often a good thing, like how Jack Butcher’s Checks changed how to open editions were made. On the other hand, things like the Friendsies collection ending in February can cause fear to spread throughout the metaverse.
Even though the market for non-fungible tokens (NFTs) went up a lot in 2023, the fall of the once-popular Friendsies showed that there are no guarantees in the world of NFTs. Project death can happen to any artist, no matter how well-known they are or how well their work is thought of.
We looked at mfers, the Metroverse, and Friendsies, three projects that died or almost died, to learn from their mistakes and find ways for projects and collectors to reduce risk.
Mfers, coming back from the dead
Since it came out in November 2021, the mfers collection has been a unique case study. Even though the important project seemed to die suddenly in the summer of 2022, it was later brought back to life by the same person who made it and then killed it: Sartoshi.
Before mfers, Sartoshi had a large number of followers because he used Twitter to talk about the market, memes, and general NFT news. With mfers, the anonymous artist used the popular “Are you winning, son?” meme in a crypto-focused way to comment on the ups and downs of the NFT market. Sartoshi promised collectors that there would be no secret plans or bonuses. Still, when he gave his project to its collectors, many people said that he had set up a rug pull.
i think people calling sartoshi exit a “rug” don’t get that he was never a leader to mf’ers. he was just an mfer
i like that he left keys and income to what will prob become a DAO
but what i don’t like is keeping a 25% royalty on exit
that’s just one mfer being honest wit ya
— DCinvestor.eth ⌐◨-◨ (@iamDCinvestor) June 10, 2022
— sartoshi (@sartoshi_rip) January 1, 2023
But Sartoshi said that the real situation was very different. He says that in the spirit of decentralisation, he chose to let the community run the mfers. This was all part of Sartoshi’s philosophy, which was mostly based on Satoshi Nakamoto’s ideas. He left the project in the hands of collectors. For those who don’t know, Nakamoto is the fake name of the person or people who created Bitcoin before leaving the project and leaving the future of blockchain technology up to its users.
Even though many of Sartoshi’s followers saw the truth of the situation (as shown by the number of tweets that predicted Sartoshi’s exit), the mfers floor still fell when he left, and the community was split. The average price of an mfers NFT in May was 2.2 ETH. This number dropped to an average of 1.5 ETH in June. And the community was still split.
Or they were for at least six months. Then, Sartoshi came back from the dead, and most of his former fans and followers were happy to see him. Since then, he has gotten back to being a well-known thought leader in the field and (mostly) forgotten about the move that caused a stir.
On the surface, this seems like a case of a builder who “saw the error of their ways” (upsetting the community) and changed their way of doing things. But on a deeper level, the event might be a better way to show how collector expectations are often harmful. Even though Sartoshi had talked about leaving before and made it clear that he wanted to give mfers to the community, many people in his community didn’t trust him and asked him to stay. In a blog post announcing his return, Satoshi complained that his leaving wasn’t seen as a big step towards decentralisation but rather as a sign of fear, uncertainty, and doubt (FUD).
There are two things to learn from this. On the one hand, the mfers situation showed that even in the best cases, the NFT space still has a lot of trouble with trust. Even though many of Sartoshi’s followers understood why he left, many of them quickly called him a thief. This fear is understandable, given the number of scams in the NFT community. And to do this, mfers reaffirmed something true in the NFT space for a long time: community opinion is everything.
The NFT community is a force that seems to exist regardless of the intentions of project builders or the unique and creative things they might do. Ultimately, the NFT community‘s opinion decides whether or not a project is good. For example, we can see how many of the once-popular NFT projects have been taken off the map because of small mistakes.
Battle lost for Metroverse
Metroverse was based on an NFT strategy game that was once said to be like Sim City. Its first collection sold out in January 2022. About 2,000 ETH ($6.3 million at the time) came in from the project. They also kept 5% of the royalties from second-hand sales, which came to about $2 million. Even with all that money, the project is said to have failed to deliver anything close to what was planned.
In the end, the Metroverse community was unhappy with the people who made it. The project fell apart on February 23, 2023.
Those who had invested in Metroverse weren’t too surprised by the project’s failure in the end. Things had been getting worse between the community and the project developers for a while. The two sides were fighting a lot, and it seemed like they would never be able to agree on anything. How come?
The main disagreement was about how Metroverse was handling money. As was already said, the genesis collection brought in $8 million for the project developers. To complicate things, the developers released three more collections: Metroverse Genesis Mini, Metroverse Blackout, and Metroverse Pass. The secondary sales of these three collections alone brought in over 5,700 ETH, or about $9 million.
Many people asked questions of the project’s developers on its Discord server because there was a difference between the large amount of money raised and how it was being spent. In short, most holders were unhappy with the boring game that had been in development for over a year and were starting to wonder where the money was going.
Because of concerns about their mental health, the developers eventually shut down their Discord and soon after said they would stop working on the project.
@themetroverse mind explaining why you guys now closed the city recrutement channel ? Witch was the last one standing . I get that your game totally suck and no one was there to join anyways but WTF is wrong with y’all , no respect for the people that made you successful
— Charley819 (@crobull819) February 20, 2023
I am proud to announce that I have cleansed myself from @themetroverse the toxic devs that created this rug pull of a project have fully shut it down and wasted all the community’s funds on a game that’s garbage and pathetic. This is a learning lesson that I will never forget
— Presser T (@Atarasca) February 20, 2023
Unlike mfers, it’s very unlikely that Metroverse will be able to come back from the brink. Why? Because Metroverse will only be successful if the team follows the plan they made, which is to make a fun game that holders love to play. They tried to make the game before, but it didn’t work out very well. There’s nothing else they can do.
The debacle showed the NFT space once again that even if a project makes a lot of money and raises a lot of money, it can still fail, even if the development team seems to try to deliver. Most new businesses will fail. That means that only 10% of them will succeed. This is true for both regular business and Web3.
So, if a project makes big promises and needs a lot of knowledge, like making a game, it’s important to know that the odds are against it. And make sure you do your research on the team and make sure they can be trusted.
Also, read – Top 5 Biggest NFTs Fails And Lesson Learned
Friendsies, left in limbo
When it came out in April 2022, the Friendsies collection was billed as a set of customizable NFTs that would act as virtual companions for the people who owned them. Most importantly, the team said that the NFTs would be useful in FriendsWithYou’s interactive metaverse experience.
Samuel Borkson and Arturo Sandoval III, who started FriendsWithYou, were well-known and had a long list of accomplishments. For example, FriendsWithYou art has been shown at a number of prestigious museums and was the basis for an animated series made for Netflix, among other things. So, the Friendsies project “minted out” and ultimately made about $5.3 million worth of ETH.
After that, many media outlets, including us, gave the project a lot of attention, and it became known throughout Web3 as an example of the values of empathy, camaraderie, unity, and kindness.
Only a year after the project started, FriendsWithYou put it on hold and deleted the Friendsies Twitter account. Many in the NFT community were very upset by this sudden decision, since the team had promised to put the money back into Friendsies. In particular, they said there would be a P2E game like Tomogatchi, a community bank, and a royalties programme. The team also said that they would give some of the money they made to charity.
But it looks like they didn’t do any of these things, and most of the money is gone. Wallet activity shows that a lot of the ETH they collected was traded for USDC and taken out of the ecosystem.
The reaction was quick and strong. FriendsWithYou tried to reassure the community on Twitter by saying that they only wanted to “pause social media engagement,” not the project itself. Notably, this is the exact opposite of what the team said before. In the end, the artists couldn’t explain their actions and got into a fight with the rest of the NFT community.
Even though the Friendsies project is almost a mess, it’s hard to say what will happen with FriendsWithYou’s other ongoing and future Web3 projects. Since the artist duo has been well-known in the fine art world for more than 20 years, it’s hard to say whether or not their time in the NFT space is over or if they’ve just hit a snag on their blockchain journey.
For now, they are in a sort of “no man’s land” between being completely kicked out and having a chance to come back.
Undoubtedly, the principles on which they founded Friendsies are now being put to the test. But the team has already failed in a lot of ways. Instead of answering questions that are worth answering, they block their community and kick them out of Discord. No matter what the FriendsWithYou team does in the future, everyone on Web3 will wait and watch to make sure they live up to their own standards. Even though Friends is in a weird place right now, there are still things to learn from this mess. In fact, there is a clear link between each of the three projects that have been talked about so far.
Community reigns supreme
Even though there is no one secret recipe for a successful NFT project, looking at the ones that have failed and the ones that have come back shows that the only way to have a healthy project is to please (or, at the very least, appease) the project community. If the developers of Metroverse and Friendsies had been more open about their plans, kept an open line of communication with their owners, and dealt with criticism as it came up, they might not have gotten into trouble in the first place.
When I looked at mfers, I saw that some were sad when Sartoshi left, but many stood by him because he knew what he stood for and often told his community about it. Still, it’s important to remember that trust works both ways. It would have been understandable if Sartoshi had decided not to come back because so many people were mean and didn’t trust him.