Sep 13, 2022 | Dave White, Frankie, Transmissions11
Art Gobblers is a decentralized art factory owned by aliens. As artists make cool art, Gobblers gains cultural relevance, making collectors want the art more, incentivizing artists to make cooler art. It's also an on-chain game.
Art Gobblers are called Art Gobblers because they gobble art. In particular, they eat art that artists draw using our draw tool and turn into 1/1 NFTs using in-game resources. All the artworks a Gobbler eats belong to it on-chain and are displayed in its belly gallery forever. Art Gobblers produce Goo tokens, which are used to produce the blank pages needed to make art. Gobblers love the smell of their own goo, so the more Goo they have in their Goo tanks, the faster they squirt out more new Goo.
The supply of Goo grows faster every day, starting at hundreds and eventually reaching billions and beyond. So, the game can't be balanced by giving items fixed prices in Goo. Instead, a mechanism called VRGDA automatically adjusts prices over time to target a desired issuance schedule, adjusting prices up when sales are ahead of schedule, and down when sales are behind schedule.
The protocol targets an initial Blank Page VRGDA issuance rate of 69 per day to foster experimentation, but eventually slows down to a constant 10 per day to ensure a high bar and focused attention from the community.
The initial (free!) Gobbler mint consists of 2,000 fully animated Gobblers. Over the next 10 years, players will spend Goo to mint 8,000 more Gobblers using VRGDA. Issuance is relatively fast at first to bootstrap growth, but slows and eventually stops to preserve exclusivity.
These systems can lead to some interesting gameplay, as players must decide when to trade Goo for Gobblers, changing the VRGDA price for everyone else. Legendary Gobblers, Goo-boosting 1/1s that can only be obtained by burning huge numbers of regular Gobblers, encourage large-scale collaboration.
The mechanisms making up the Art Gobblers experiment will be final at the time of mint, and no more will be built. They are intended to power a self-sustaining ecosystem capable of creating and collecting the coolest art in the universe without the need for human intervention.
As artists make cool art, the cultural relevance of Art Gobblers will grow.
As cultural relevance grows, Gobbler art will be in higher demand from collectors.
As artists see higher collector demand, they will produce cooler art.
Art Gobblers exists to facilitate the creation and collection of the coolest art in the universe.
Artists can create hand-drawn art using our draw tool, which works on desktop, iPad, or Cintiq.
They’ve been making some pretty cool stuff already. The draw tool records the entire process of creation, and when you visit a work of art in the Art Gobblers webapp, you can play back the drawing process stroke by stroke.
Once Art Gobblers is live, artists will be able to mint their own drawings as 1/1 NFTs using in-game resources, a process we call glamination. These NFTs, which belong to the Art Gobblers Pages collection, are ERC721 NFTs that belong to the artist. Like any other NFT, they can be transferred or sold by the artist at will.
Producing these art Pages is the main point of the Art Gobblers ecosystem. Because the number of Pages that can be created in a given period of time is limited by a VRGDA mechanism, any art glaminated onto a Page will benefit from the cultural relevance of Art Gobblers and the attention of the Art Gobblers community, which has been seeded with some of the most accomplished collectors in the 1/1 space.
In order to glaminate your drawing onto a Page, you need a Blank Page NFT, which can be created using Goo.
Goo, as described in the GOO paper, is an ERC20 Ethereum token emitted by Art Gobblers NFTs. Because Goo is needed to make new Blank Pages, Art Gobblers ultimately determine what art can be created in the ecosystem, and in that way serve as co-curators of a decentralized art gallery.
Goo can also be used to create new Gobblers, giving players an interesting set of strategic decisions that we will discuss further in the Details section.
Art Gobblers themselves are fully animated ERC721 NFTs.
As well as emitting Goo, they can, of course, gobble art.
In particular, let’s say you own both an Art Gobbler and some cool art on a Page. If you feed that Page to your Gobbler, ownership of the Page transfers on-chain to the Art Gobblers contract, which has a mapping indicating which particular Gobbler that piece of art belongs to.
That Page then becomes a permanent part of that Gobbler’s belly gallery, viewable through the Art Gobblers app. If you transfer your Gobbler, all of its gobbled works go with it.
Collectors can curate their Gobblers however they choose. We can imagine a Gobbler containing only works by Justin, a Gobbler containing only pictures of dogs, a Gobbler full of autographs, a Gobbler containing a collaborative manga, and countless other possibilities.
Given their limited supply and their in-game uses, Art Gobblers may be hard to come by. Collectors who can’t get their hands on a Gobbler will still be able to contribute to the ecosystem by collecting pages with art on them.
Because Blank Pages are rare, by choosing which artists to support and even directly commissioning artists to draw on Blank Pages, even collectors without Gobblers will be able to make a serious contribution to the curation of the decentralized Gallery that is Art Gobblers.
The ten Legendary Gobblers are extravagantly rare one of one Gobblers that represent the supreme rulers of Gobbler civilization. They will arrive at specific predestined times over the next ten years, providing punctuated drama and a sense of structure over time to the game.
In order to obtain a Legendary Gobbler, you must sacrifice a huge number of normal Gobblers. The first Legendary Gobbler will start at a price of 69 Gobblers, and will become cheaper using a standard Dutch Auction mechanism until it is purchased. Each successive Legendary Gobbler will start at a price in ordinary Gobblers equal to twice what the last Legendary Gobbler sold for.
A new Legendary Gobbler appears each time an additional 10% of the total supply of Gobblers is issued via VRGDA, and each Legendary Auction is scheduled to end by the time the next Legendary Gobbler appears (or when all Gobblers are issued, in the case of the final Legendary).
To compensate for the many Gobbler lives lost, Legendary Gobblers produce Goo at twice the rate of the combined Gobblers sacrificed to summon them.
There isn’t one.
Art Gobblers will be launched as a finished product, designed to bootstrap a self-sustaining ecosystem.
Neither Justin, nor Paradigm, nor the Art Gobblers team plan to build anything net new after the upcoming free mint. Art Gobblers is not stage one of the Gobblers metaverse. It is a whole and complete piece of alien technology that we will be unleashing upon an unsuspecting populace.
What it does next, and how the inhabitants of Earth choose to aid it in its mission, is anyone’s guess.
From the GOO Paper:
Art Gobblers, from our upcoming NFT project, are NFTs that produce an Ethereum token called Goo. The more Goo a Gobbler has, the faster it generates more Goo. This means the total Goo supply will increase faster and faster every day, going from thousands to millions and beyond.
Hoarding Goo tokens without owning any Gobbler NFTs is a very bad strategy, as everyone else will be generating goo and your share of the total Goo supply will rapidly dwindle to nothing. On the other hand, if you own many Gobblers but little Goo, your Goo production will lag compared to other players.
But, let's say you maintain ownership of Gobbler NFTs with a combined Goo production capacity of 1% of the total and never remove your Goo. No matter how much Goo you start with, you will eventually end up with at least 1% of the total Goo supply! This ensures Goo stays in NFT holder control over the long term.
Mathematically speaking, instantaneous Goo issuance is equal to
In this system, due to some extremely lucky math, it turns out that having many Gobblers with multipliers that add to
Because the Goo supply is increasing faster and faster every day, having fixed Goo prices for Gobblers or Pages would make no sense. A fair price for a Gobbler might be 69 immediately after mint, but 69,000 when the Goo supply has grown by several orders of magnitude.
Instead, prices are set dynamically to make issuance of Gobblers and Pages track pre-determined schedules using a mechanism called VRGDA.
From the VRGDA paper:
Variable Rate GDAs (VRGDAs), designed for Art Gobblers and used in 0xMonaco, let you sell tokens close to a custom schedule over time by raising prices when sales are ahead of schedule and lowering prices when sales are behind schedule — a generalization of the GDA mechanism.
Imagine a simple schedule where we want to sell 10 NFTs per day. We set a starting price of 1 token for the first NFT.
Suppose it is currently day 5, so we should have sold 50 NFTs. However, demand has been high, and we have sold 70. We weren’t supposed to sell 70 NFTs until day 7, so we are two days ahead of schedule.
As a result, we want to charge a higher price going forward. We use an exponential curve to determine how much higher. This can vary based on parameters, but in this case, let’s say we use
Ten days later, on day 15, we should have sold 150 NFTs, but users have only bought 120, the amount they should have bought by day 12, meaning we are three days behind schedule. We adjust the price to
Because your rate of Goo production depends on both how much Goo you have and how many Gobblers you have, spending Goo to get Gobblers presents a tradeoff. Furthermore, every time you spend your Goo to get Gobblers, you increase the Gobbler VRGDA price for every other player.
This presents a complex strategy space that we saw play out on our 30x speed test net run (to be released soon). Once you add in the possibilities of DAOs and other forms of collaboration, especially as they interact with Legendary Gobblers, the scope for action becomes quite wide.
Art Gobblers themselves begin at a supply of 2,000, issued as a free mint. Of these, 300 go to the core team and the rest go to the community, a mixture of collaborators, artists, collectors, builders, contest winners, and others.
Over the next ten years, an additional 8,000 Gobblers will be minted using a logistic schedule. At first, the protocol will issue roughly 200 Gobblers per month, but this will slow down over time.
This pattern allows the community to grow quickly and bootstrap at first while avoiding over-inflation in the long term.
Similarly to the Nouns model, one in ten newly minted Gobblers will accrue to the team. An additional one in ten will go to a vault to be distributed to the community.
No Blank Pages will exist at mint, but they can be created shortly after using Goo.
The schedule calls for an initial creation rate of 69 pages per day to allow the community to experiment with art styles, memes, and more. Over the course of about 8 months, this issuance rate will slow down along a logistic curve until it hits a constant rate of 10 pages per day, which the protocol maintains forever.
No Pages accrue directly to the team, but one in ten newly created pages do go to a vault to be distributed to artists in the community.
A spreadsheet containing parameters and issuance schedules can be found here.
Art Gobblers is an experimental piece of alien technology.
Only time will tell how the human world will react to it.
But, you can begin using it and remixing it starting today.
If you do, we’d love to hear from you. You can reach us on Twitter at @transmissions11, @FrankieIsLost and @_Dave__White_.
Acknowledgments: Matt Huang, Arjun Balaji, Joanna7459, Rodrigo Seira, Reena Jashnani-Slusarz, Otto Suwen, DCFPascal, 0xmisaka, johawa, cygaar, Lib
Graphics By: Achal Srinivasan
Disclaimer: This post is for general information purposes only. It does not constitute investment advice or a recommendation or solicitation to buy or sell any investment and should not be used in the evaluation of the merits of making any investment decision. It should not be relied upon for accounting, legal or tax advice or investment recommendations. This post reflects the current opinions of the authors and is not made on behalf of Paradigm or its affiliates and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of Paradigm, its affiliates or individuals associated with Paradigm. The opinions reflected herein are subject to change without being updated.