Nifty News: GameStop’s NFT market, NBA star LaMelo ‘mints career’ on NFTs … and more

It appears that “r/wallstreetbets” favorite meme stock company GameStop is in the process of developing its own NFT marketplace.

While an official announcement hasn’t been made, the gaming giant appears to have launched a website named “nft.gamestop” — and is currently on the lookout for recruits:

“We welcome exceptional engineers (solidity, react, python), designers, gamers, marketers, and community leaders. If you want to join our team, send your profile or something you’ve built to: [email protected]

Information on the bare bones website is sparse. Apart from the job listing, there is a Nintendo Game-Boy-like gaming console with a GameStop cartridge placed at the top. The console’s screen has green text which reads “power to the players, power to the creators, power to the collectors.” The website budget looks like it was under $20.

Interestingly, there is a link under the console to an Ethereum address. Upon searching the address on Etherscan, it looks like the firm will be utilizing Ethereum’s ERC721 standard, with an overview showing a “GME token” although there are zero in circulation so far.

In the comment section on Etherscan, some “r/wsb” members have already flocked to show support, with several people commenting with “I like the stonk,” — a popular meme within the community.

LaMelo having a tokenized ball

Charlotte Hornets star LaMelo Ball is set to drop a collection of 500 Dynamic NFTs — non-static and updatable NFTs — before the NBA Rookie of the Year announcement in June. The collection will be dropped onlameloball.io.

“As I learn more about blockchain, I realize this is the most powerful and unique way to engage my fans in a way that’s special to them individually,” Ball told ESPN on May 28.

Ball is one of three rookie of the year candidates and is dropping 500 “Dynamic NFTs” that will automatically update to include the award (if he wins it).

Unlike static NFTs which can’t change, Dynamic NFTs can be updated with new data as they rely on “perpetual smart contracts that use oracles to communicate with and react to external data and systems” according to Chainlink Labs.

Utilizing Dynamic NFTs, Ball plans to update or “level up” the NFTs according to events from his NBA career. The 20-year-old also plans to offer lotteries that will allow collectors of the NFTs to “burn” them in exchange for that chance to win game worn-memorabilia.

“LaMelo will become the first athlete to mint his career on the blockchain,” Sher Chaudhary told ESPN, The co-founder of Playground, the Southern California-based NFT design studio working with Ball.

According to ESPN, along with the 500 Dynamic NFTs, the rookie of the year candidate has plans to release a further 9,500 standard NFT’s on the Ethereum Blockchain.

NFTs are Gucci

Christie’s art auction house has announced the launch of a new NFT auction dubbed “Proof of Sovereignty” — which includes a tokenized fashion film from Gucci.

The auction is already underway and due to close on June 3 and is being curated by the co-founder of art and crypto media advisory firm Universe Contemporary, “Lady PheOnix.”

The auction will consist of artworks from 19 different artists and includes fashion giant Gucci’s first-ever NFT — a tokenized fashion film co-directed by Alessandro Michele and by renowned photographer and director Floria Sigismondi.

The film explores the themes of “universal desire for renewal; a yearning to bloom and flourish after the shadow of winter has passed,” and has a starting bid of $20,000.

All of the proceeds from Gucci’s NFT sale will be donated to UNICEF USA, which supports UNICEF’s role in COVAX — “an initiative aimed at ensuring global equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.”

Animoca Brands and Hedera

NFT game developer Animoca Brands has entered into a partnership with a public distributed ledger or DLT, network Hedera Hashgraph to develop two DLT-based gaming projects.

Hedera Hashgraph revealed the first project is an NFT based soccer game, that will feature tradable tokenized player NFTs which are backed by Hedera’s native token HBAR.

The NFTs will be redeemable for HBAR after an unrevealed “cooldown period,” with the firm claiming that this will represent the “first time that an NFT will be redeemable for a fixed and guaranteed amount of an underlying crypto asset.”

The second project dubbed “Helix Warp” will be an independent DLT-based online gaming platform focused on taking down cheaters.

“Helix Warp will counteract cheating by creating a server-side simulation environment and leveraging the Hedera Consensus Service to record results. Game developers will be able to plug into Helix Warp and deploy hack-resistant leaderboards in their games.”

“Helix Warp will target HTML5 games, to begin with and utilize the Helix Warp token to underpin the ecosystem,” the blog post added.

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