I have personally added more than 100 collectible NFT projects to rarity.tools at the time of writing this, and have worked directly with many of the projects’ devs to add their projects to the site.
After adding so many projects, there are a few things that I’ve learned that I think would be useful to share with anyone who’s creating a collectible / generative / pfp / avatar or other NFT collection, at least in terms of “designing” the rarity distribution.
Following these rules will help make everyone involved with your project happier —your community will be happier, you will be happier and I will be happier because my job will be easier!
[Sorry for the walls of texts, I’ll try to find time to add nice images to the article later.]
Rule #1: Make Desirable Stuff Rare
Rare stuff is usually more valuable. For example, if gold or oil were as plentiful as seawater, then they wouldn’t be so expensive. Diamonds are (supposedly) rare. Big diamonds are even rarer. On the other hand, granite rocks are not rare and extremely cheap compared to Diamonds.
Following this logic, in an NFT collection, any trait that you think should be more desirable or expensive than others should be rarer.
This probably seems like common sense.
But many project owners when they first see the rarity rankings of their project, they say ‘the rankings look off’. Or ‘the rarities seem wrong’ because the traits they wanted to be rare and desirable and ranked at the top aren’t actually rare and are in page 3 or 4 of the rankings.
Since rarity.tools ranks items by rarity, if something isn’t rare or isn’t rare enough, then it just won’t be ranked near the top. So the more valuable you want it to be, the more rare you should make it!
Rule #2: Do Not Make Undesirable Stuff Rare
The flip side of the rule above also applies. Again it sounds like common sense, but stuff that you don’t want to show up on the first page of rankings shouldn’t be rare.
Maybe it is a ‘lesser’ trait (in your view). Maybe it doesn’t look as good as some others. Maybe you just don’t like it. Careful, if you have only a few of them in the collection, they will rise up to the top of the rarity rankings!
Again, sometimes project owners see the rankings and say ‘this one shouldn’t be there!’. The fact of the matter is the rarity score is calculated mathematically from the amount of items that exist with each trait value. If there are only a few with a value, then they will get a lot of score and thus rank highly.
You don’t want your top/most rarest NFTs to be a bunch of bad looking ones!
Rule #3: Be Extremely Careful To Not Include Controversial Images or Names
While not directly related to rarity, this is something that is very important, as if the collection references topics that are too sensitive or controversial in nature, then it is possible that we won’t be able to list your project.
And quite a few projects, even big ones, have made mistakes by including images/themes/names that are essentially taboo or considered bad taste.
While controversy can stir up discussion and make people talk about your project, for an NFT project it could also be a death sentence as people decide to disassociate from your project and not want to buy any of your NFTs.
So do extra research about any symbols, images or names you decide to put in to make sure they aren’t considered taboo in other cultures/countries. If in doubt, just don’t include it.
And if you have an idea about throwing in just “a few” that could be considered controversial, DON’T! Following from Rule #2 above, they won’t be “hidden” but instead will be some of the top ranking ones! Which is kind of a double whammy because now your project is projecting the image that ‘these controversial ones are the ones we the project creators think are deemed valuable/desirable/deserving of lots of attention’.
More to Come
So to keep it short, we’ll leave it at 3 rules for now. This is just the beginning of this series of articles. More rules are coming as I cover other topics that may help projects in their decision making.