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Rare collectibles drive the crypto collectors' appetite. But what makes rare NFTs so special?

Coins, stamps, digital images. People have a thing for collecting stuff and above all - hunting down the most precious pieces of their niche. This is true for NFT galleries too. But how can you determine value and scarcity in the world of digital images? Let's peek into the 'rare NFT' folder and see what they're all about.

What's the point of collecting NFTs at all? NFT stands for Non-Fungible Token, which means you can't copy, divide or replace it with an identical one. Thanks to the blockchain technology, you can own a digital asset pegged to the token via a unique record of ownership in the blockchain database. And it's this very record that allows you to become a sole owner of the NFT. Thus, it's an asset just like any other, albeit a digital one. May it be an image, a music song, or a rare elven magic sword from an Xbox RPG.

You can't fool blockchain. As there can't be two owners of the same NFT image (meaning that there can't be two records of its ownership in the database), the value of the NFTs is generated from its uniqueness. It's not possible to visit an NFT marketplace such as OpenSea, right-click an image and download it. You can only buy it with cryptocurrency - and if you do, it's yours and the blockchain is your witness. Until you decide to sell it and pass the record to another lucky user (again, with blessing from the blockchain database).

See? The blockchain allows you to collect NFTs just like any other things in real life - and treat them as such. You can buy them, sell them, view them, boast with them, or just pile them up in a digital album and feel happy. However, a true collector will not find peace until he adds some rare pieces to his collection - the same way a postage stamp geek would go crazy if he ran into the Inverted Jenny from 1918.

Let's stay with the stamp analogy. Most people can tell a usual stamp from a rare one. The usual ones are common and quite easy to get. The rare stamps feature something the others don't - a scarce element. The above mentioned Inverted Jenny has a printing error. Yes, this is what is required for a collectible to be rare - a unique visual feature, an interesting background story, or possibly a high personal value of the author. It's clear why Excalibur is more valuable than an ordinary sword. This also applies for the NFT images.

There are only 100 Inverted Jennys, making them a rare collectible for an eager philatelist. The same way one can mint a limited amount of 59 NFTs of LeBron James dunking a basketball. The owner of such NFT can declare themselves a rare NFT owner. Scarcity is the keyword here to creating collectors' value.

Another factor is 'special traits'. Take a look at the famous Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT series. There are plenty of images featuring simply a monkey on a background. However, there is always something different about that specific monkey - it might have a sailor's hat, laser eyes or be dressed in a striped T-shirt. A unique (and scarce) combination of these visual traits can constitute a rare NFT, ready for the enthusiastic NFT hunters.

A new trend in the rare NFT world is tying the NFTs to a real-life benefit - we call these 'utility NFTs'. They go beyond the digital world and can offer something extra. The band Kings of Leon have released their album as a NFT, which is redeemable for a physical record. Another rare NFT minted by the band can be redeemed for VIP seats at their concert.

The personal value of the author is another determining variable. Some NFT artists can be very active, producing loads of images for purchase. Yet some of them will stand above the common NFTs. A globally awarded Ukrainian graphic designer Mykola Kovalenko has been making anti-war posters since the beginning of war in Ukraine - one per every day. He decided to offer them as NFTs in a fundraising campaign: 80% of the generated funds will be used to support war victims. The posters with the highest personal value are now available as rare NFTs - such as those made in the very first days of the aggression, startling the Ukrainian-born artist as he saw tanks invading his home country. Mykola's rare NFT offer combines personal value with real-life utility: anyone can get their own rare poster and make a change in the real world.

#nft #mykolakovalenko

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