Regardless of your level of expertise about non-fungible tokens (NFTs), you probably know that the “monkey” is considered to be the iconic symbol of the NFT market. Today, there are hundreds of collections representing monkeys in all their forms.
Although the majority of them were launched with the sole purpose of riding the wave, some projects were able to offer innovative concepts and artistic styles.
In this article, we’ll take a look at the “monkey collections” that have made the biggest impact on this ecosystem since its rise in 2021.
1 – Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC)
If there are any monkeys leading this ecosystem, it’s the NFTs from the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) collection. 10,000 monkeys with pronounced facial expressions, accompanied by a unique and crafted style, the BAYCs captured the hearts of the NFT community when they launched in April 2021.
Today, the BAYC collection is arguably the most popular NFT project in the ecosystem. To tell you, the total exchange volume that these NFTs have generated amounts to a more than 800,000 ETH, which is worth about $1.1 billion at the current Ethereum price.
Even in these tumultuous times, the cheapest BAYCs are selling for 65 ETH. As some like to point out on the networks, this is still “expensive for monkey pictures.
So yes, it’s a price that is not affordable for everyone, but you know that this project is building a whole Web3 ecosystem around their identity. Beyond the “simple” monkey NFTs we all know, the collection is notably working on the development of Otherside, an evolving metaverse aimed at bringing together multiple immersive gaming experiences.
The BAYC project has continued to evolve over the years, while continually delivering value to its holders. It is certainly for these reasons that it has maintained its position as a leader in this market.
2 – Mutant Ape Yacht Club (MAYC)
You don’t change a winning team. Several months after their launch, BAYC decided to reward its holders by giving them a free NFT (Airdrop) from a brand new collection: the Mutant Ape Yacht Club (MAYC).
With the same graphic style, but in a “mutant” version, the prices of the MAYCs quickly skyrocketed. In April 2022, at the peak of the NFT market, MAYCs were trading, on average, at 38 ETH, or about $110,000 at the price at the time.
After staggering the NFT market with their first collection, the creators of BAYC have undeniably earned the trust of users. In total, the MAYC collection has generated over 580,000 ETH in trading volume. This technically makes it one of the largest collections in the NFT market.
3- Degenerate Ape Academy
A few months after the launch of the first viral collections on Ethereum (ETH), the Solana network (SOL) has, in turn, launched into the NFT adventure.
Degenerate Ape Academy or “DegenApe” was one of the first collections to be launched on Solana, but also one of the most popular on this blockchain. The DegenApe collection was the precursor of a new trend, bringing an unfamiliar style to the NFT market, namely 3D.
Indeed, 3D modeled NFTs were not at all popular at the time. This innovative style has more than won the hearts of the NFT community on Solana.
Released in August 2021 at a price of 6 SOL, or about $240 at the time, Degenerate Ape Academy holds a total trading volume of about 3 million SOL (~$75 million at current prices).
While the hype around this project has diminished considerably, it is still one of the largest NFT collections on the Solana (SOL) market.
4 – Solana Monkey Business (SMB)
Launched shortly before Degenerate Ape Academy, the Solana Monkey Business collection also played a major role in introducing NFTs to the Solana network.
Based on the pixelated style of the famous “CryptoPunks” collection, the SMB NFTs quickly appealed to a very specific audience.
In spite of a less aggressive marketing strategy, it has nevertheless recorded significant volumes over the last few years. In total, almost 2 million SOLs have been traded on the various Solana marketplaces.
Even after the wave of events that have had a strong impact on the market, the floor price (lowest price of a collection) of SMBs has remained at around 220 SOL. This makes it one of the most expensive collections on Solana.
5 – Cyberkongz
Technically more “gorillas” than monkeys, the 2D/3D cubic style brought on by the Ethereum (ETH) Cyberkongz collection has likely created a huge wave of hype among investors.
Cyberkongz have now recorded nearly 35,000 ETH in terms of total sales volume, which is equivalent to about $60 million.
Just like most collections, Cyberkongz has seen its trading volumes drastically decrease over the past few months.
Bonus – Elrond Apes
Considerably less famous than its competitors, the Elrond Apes project has nevertheless had a significant impact on the evolution of NFTs on the Elrond network.
These 10,000 3D apes are now trading at nearly $900 for the cheapest of them.
Considering that they were launched much more recently than the collections presented above, Elrond Apes generated a total volume of around 90,000 EGLD (~$4.5 million), which is still an excellent performance.