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Gaming

The Sandbox + Care Bears Partnership

Animoca Brands and its subsidiary The Sandbox, a leading decentralized gaming virtual world, announced today it is partnering with Cloudco Entertainment, the owner, content producer, and global distributor of the Care Bears™ intellectual property, to bring the Care Bears and their Care-a-Lot world to The Sandbox metaverse. Through the agreement, The Sandbox players will be able to explore a virtual Care-a-Lot setting as well as purchase Care Bears-themed in-game content for use in their own game worlds.

The Sandbox is building a unique virtual world where players can build, own, and monetize their gaming experiences using NFTs (non-fungible tokens) and $SAND, the main utility token of the platform. $SAND was recently launched via Binance, the global blockchain company behind the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume . The Sandbox’s vision is to offer a deeply immersive metaverse in which virtual worlds and games will be created collaboratively and without central authority. The Sandbox has secured over 50 partnerships, including Care Bears, Atari, CryptoKitties, and Shaun the Sheep, to build a fun, creative “play-to-earn” platform that offers virtual worlds and game experiences owned and created by players.

The Sandbox consists of three main components: the VoxEdit NFT (non-fungible token) builder for building game ASSETS, the Marketplace for buying and selling ASSETS, and the Game Maker tool where complete interactive games can be constructed and shared without any programming knowledge. Together, these components offer rich, easy-to-create virtual worlds and game experiences in addition to the ability to safely store, trade, and monetize creations through blockchain, allowing creators to benefit from their creations.

The Care Bears were created and launched in 1982 at American Greetings. Since their debut, the Care Bears have brought the values of caring and sharing to hundreds of millions of children and adults via their animated TV series “Care Bears: Unlock the Magic” and new YouTube-first show “Care Bears: Unlock the Music”. This partnership also aligns with the relaunch of Care Bears toys with a new master toy partner, Basic Fun!. The new toy line initially sold out online and in-store at Walmart and has experienced successful roll-outs at Target, Amazon, and a number of other leading online and brick-and-mortar retailers across the US, UK, and Canada.

The Care Bears were created and launched in 1982 at American Greetings, inspired by the hand-painted artwork of master illustrator Elena Kucharik. Since their debut, the Care Bears have brought the values of caring and sharing to generations of children and adults via their animated TV series and movies, becoming part of global culture for hundreds of millions of fans. The Care Bears’ message of cooperation and understanding has helped the brand generate more than $5B in retail sales worldwide.

Under the terms of the Care Bears agreement for The Sandbox, Cloudco will receive large digital spaces, known as LANDS, in the gaming metaverse. On these LANDS, a 3D voxelized version of the Care Bears’ Care-a-Lot kingdom will be made available to players when The Sandbox publicly launches later this year. Furthermore, Cloudco and The Sandbox have the right to produce and distribute  Care Bears-inspired collectible in-game ASSETS for game creators to use in their own games, tokenized on the blockchain as non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Players will be able to explore a virtual Care-a-Lot setting, complete with Care Bears-themed environment, attractions, games, and buildings with which to interact. The Sandbox is designed to support deeply immersive gaming experiences that can be shared socially, and players will be able to meet and chat in The Sandbox Care-a-Lot world using their Avatar characters in addition to playing together.

“We’re pleased to welcome the Care Bears license into The Sandbox virtual world, inviting family-friendly entertainment brands that our players have grown up with to participate in the next digital revolution where virtual worlds are 100% made, governed, and owned by players,” said Sebastien Borget, COO & Co-Founder of The Sandbox. “We are creating an appealing gaming metaverse that aims at attracting mainstream gamers and creators through their favorite brands, to build great experiences.”

“We look forward to bringing the Care Bears into a new gaming universe and creating a new generation of family entertainment experiences,” said Sean Gorman, President of Cloudco Entertainment. “Working with The Sandbox team to build an authentic Care-a-Lot in the metaverse will allow Care Bears fans to interact with the world and each other in a fun and imaginative virtual theme park setting.”

The Sandbox will offer a persistent, interactive virtual metaverse —  a 3D universe created by players and secured through blockchain technology. LANDs are the unique digital locations in this universe where players can build and monetize games. They are the fundamental building blocks upon which game ASSETS (items and scripting) can be imported to create original interactive experiences. LANDS can be combined into larger groupings (ESTATES) to permit more ambitious game experiences. 

The Sandbox game franchise is one of the world’s largest independent user-generated content and gaming platforms, with 40 million downloads and over one million monthly active users. The upcoming 3D based blockchain version of The Sandbox – which introduces new creative and commercial possibilities by allowing users to create 3D items and gaming worlds from the digital equivalent of building blocks – has been named one of the top 10 most anticipated blockchain games globally and one of the Top 50 Blockchain Gaming companies in the world (source: BlockchainGamer.biz).

Art

Async 5th Auctions Results

For the Kitty Bungalow #BuyArtSaveKittens charity event, the team at Async combined forces with 34 artists in one of the biggest art collaborations to create three Async artworks to auction off for charity. Each Kitty-themed masterpiece is custom-made with special features to showcase the power of programmable art. 

Cats featured in “Pixel Story”  are able to emote and communicate with each other with certain combinations of emotes triggering special effects within the whole canvas. Check out the mini comic to get an idea of the abilities.

Artists included in this collaboration piece includes: Pxlpet, Sparrow, Breadbreaker22, MLIBTY, PX99, Metagiest, TS Moreau, DinziBR, and Cryptokitties team. This is Async and Dapper Lab’s first partnership and collaboration. The Cryptokitties team created Pepito the Mascot Layer, which was bundled with an actual Special Edition Cryptokitty. The Master went for 6.66 ETH, and the total with all Layers included was 15.51 ETH. 

MaoCity

“Big Trouble in Mao Mao City '' has cats that show off fighting moves as well as a variety of state changes. To check out all the possible combinations, try out one of our community member’s tool to preview Layer changes.
The artists involved in the street fight include: Alotta Money, Carlos Marcial, Vulon, Plouzza, Hidden Forces, Shortcut, BrucetheGoose, CryptotheGiant, Fabiello and TS Moreau. There was an epic bidding war over the “Shaolin Sphynx” Layer, spanning over the course of several days and the final winner turned out to be SwiftEagle at 3.2 ETH. The Master went for 10.1 ETH and with all Layers included it was 19.55 ETH. 

And finally  “Forgotten Cats of Fallen Leaves Forest” tugs at your heartstrings as kitties fade in and out of your memories depending on how often you come back to update them. This one has the largest amount of artists participating, 15 unique artists which include:Hackatao, Max Osiris, Ilan Katin, Serste, Primal Cypher, Matt Kane, Trippyogi, Reinhard, Daveed, Rutger van der Tas, Fabin Rasheed, Reviiser, Moxarra, Julia K. Ponsford, & Ruben Alexander.
The Master’s secret reserve price was triggered by Metavereum, and was instantly sold on Thursday for 10.1 ETH. Collectively this piece sold for a total of 17.06 ETH. 

The auctions lasted for about a week with all three artworks as well as 27 unique Layers sold. Collectively Async artists raised over $10,000 for the feral cat shelter - an amazing feat in itself! The Async team is extremely happy that so many artists have donated their time and art to help cats in need and grateful for this opportunity to participate in this fantastic virtual event. 

Collectibles

LBCOIN: The World’s First NFT Coin

“Two years ago we only had one brave idea. Today we turn a new page in the history of numismatics, further exploring the potential of central bank digital currencies (CBDC). This innovation will bring real benefits to society by contributing to future digital solutions. It is therefore highly symbolic that LBCOIN is dedicated to the signatories of the 1918 Act of Independence – the brave visionaries who laid the foundation for modern-day Lithuania” said Marius Jurgilas, Member of the Board of the Bank of Lithuania.

The digital collector coin LBCOIN was issued on 23 July and consists of six digital tokens and one physical silver collector coin. The Bank of Lithuania will issue 4,000 LBCOINs, that is, 24,000 digital tokens and 4,000 physical collector coins.

Each token features one of the 20 signatories and belongs to one of the six signatory categories (priests, presidents, diplomats, industrialists, academics, municipal servants) with 4,000 tokens allotted to each category. Having purchased LBCOIN, collectors will get six randomly selected digital tokens which they will be able to exchange for a physical collector coin, store in a dedicated e-wallet on the e-shop, send as a gift, swap with other collectors or transfer to a public NEM wallet. The price of LBCOIN is EUR 99.

LBCOIN

The physical silver collector coins, bearing an unconventional denomination of €19.18, were minted at the Lithuanian Mint. In size and form, they resemble a credit card, depicting the Act of Independence and its signatories. The physical coin is proof-like and weighs 36.36 g. 

The LBCOIN project has been carried out by the Bank of Lithuania and a team of external providers. iTree Lietuva developed the LBCOIN platform and installed it in the Bank of Lithuania’s and NEM infrastructures.

Collecting LBCOIN is not a very easy process since buyers are required to remotely confirm their identity and we know that NIFTIES collectors prefer  quick transactions and might not be willing to share personal informations when collecting.

Anyway, a very interesting project!

 

news
Art

Kitty Bungalow' s Virtual Edition

Hi Coldie! Can you tell us how did the whole project start?

I have been donating physical art to the Kitty Bungalow art show for the last few years. Last year, I brought in CryptoKitties and Crypto Kaiju who donated artworks. Following the success of these pieces in last year’s show, I was approached by KB about the virtual worlds I was creating. We decided to do an experiment and see how the charity would translate to a digital setting. From there we did an open call for entries, I curated a show including 40+ art pieces and VOX sculptures that took place in 4 parcels in CryptoVoxels.

In addition to the NFT digital art, we also had a physical art gallery. What blew us away was that we sold more than $2,000 in physical art as well! It was also the first introduction to several famous artists of the crypto art scene. I can tell you that a few of them are looking at getting into NFTs!

 

What was the scale of the event in terms of artists and other actors involved?

We had over 75 artists and builders contribute to the show. This includes Async who had 33 contributors in their 3 pieces they created specially for the event. I also had many builders contribute piece to the show include megavox sculptures that were auctioned as well. I tried to sell everything I could in the build. Might as well make as much as possible!

 

Any favorite contributions on the artistic side?

One of my favorite pieces was Matt Kane’s Excessive Force - Cat Devouring Bird after Picasso. This piece is not the usual for Matt in terms of subject matter, and seeing a different side to his art was really thrilling. Others agreed and there was a pretty good bid war going and it ended up selling for for 8.5 ETH (over $2,000) to Tennessee Jed. Take a look and get lost in the animation layers. Subtle, but SO TASTY!

Matt Kane

I was blown away by the Async collaboration pieces. 3 distinct pieces that were very well thought out and all very successful turnouts! Big thanks to their whole time for all they did. You could tell there was a lot of love coming from them to help cats and it showed in the end result.

Pixel Story

Big Trouble in Māo Māo City

Forgotten Cats of Fallen Leaves Forest

CryptoKitties contributed 3 very rare kitties, as well as kitties for a scavenger hunt. They also contributed to one of the Async pieces. Their team was so generous and always willing to help promote and do whatever they could to be sure our event went off as well as possible. I their kindness and professionalism, mixed with creativity and care was amazing to collaborate with!

So, how did the event go in terms of support, are you satisfied with how it all went, was it challenging?

Overall, there were no issues, somehow! So many people stepped up and dontated their time and skills to make this event really shine and be as successful as it was.

It was a challenge to get in the ear of crypto collectors and other who might be interested in the show. I was blown away at how many people showed up and also the diversity of collectors.

 

I know that Nala cat was involved too, did this help stir the interest of more people beyond the crypto art scene?

Yes, Nala is a literal cat celebrity and with her she brings a very passionate fanbase. We had Nala do her first Twitch Livestream which went well and many of her fans joined in, which is probably the first time many of them experienced a crypto art show or virtual live event. We really appreciate the support of Nala’s team to allow us to have her be so much of a piece of the show. We had a beautiful sculpture of Nala created by Ogar which was auctioned.

Looking back on the whole event, I am so proud of how it turned out. To date, Kitty Bungalow has received over $15,000 in donations from this event. It far exceeds what any of us were dreaming of. The best part about it is that they always need more money to help feral cats in need in the Los Angeles area, so the extra money will always go to a good use.

Having a second event at the Citadel Art Center is also really fun and rewarding. It is interesting taking down an exhibition and putting up a new one. It keeps the vibes fresh, the art new, and I look forward to putting on the next show there. To everyone who collaborated, created, donated, and enjoyed the show, THANK YOU. It was only possible because of everyone! I love this community and we now have a wider network including Kitty Bungalow who love crypto events and will continue to be friends with us as this whole space continues to grow and evolve.

To learn more and donate, visit www.kittybungalow.org

To see the show, visit https://www.cryptovoxels.com/play?coords=SW@123E,232S

Follow https://twitter.com/art_citadel for upcoming events at this location

news
VR

Genesis City Art Week

Starting in June, there was a week long art festival with an event everyday showcasing a new cryptoart exhibition. The exhibitors included SuperRare, MakersPlace, KnownOrigin, Pixelchain, Mintbase, Josie Bellini, OpenSea, AsyncArt and Chain Guardians.

Majority of the events took place in SoHo plaza, a district that is located North East of the map just left of the massive cyberpunk district Aetheria.

All the galleries are located walking distance from each other, filled with NFTs from their website collections on the walls. It's a interesting experience to walk around the gallery instead of scrolling the website.

The artworks on the wall were interactive as well. Clicking on the cryptoart opened up a menu warning that you were about to open an external website. This is a safety precaution to verify you're going to the correct website and not a phishing scam. If you verify that the URL is correct, a nifty feature that Decentraland implemented is the ability to check a box to 'trust this domain'. Once checked, you can click any artwork on the wall and it will open up a link in a new browser tab for purchasing. After opening up a few links it started to feel like filling up a shopping cart.

Users got a free Proof-of-Attendance-Protocol (POAP) NFT for every event they attend. This basically means they showed up on time for the event. Collecting 10 of the POAPs gives all the collectors an exclusive NFT designed by Shibu, the art director of Decentraland, and a chance to win LAND in a prize draw.

The machines to claim a POAP were located around locations of the events. Since users are already logged in via their Ethereum wallet, all one needed to do was click the button and pay some gas for the transaction.

Now that the dust has settled, there were some good and bad things about Art Week worth mentioning.

Starting with the bad, it mostly came down to performance. During the launch of one of the galleries, we recorded <5 FPS at times. Wasn't the whole switch to Unity because of performance? Granted it's much better than how things were 1 year ago, but it's probably going to be a long time until DCL is ready for VR where any amount of lag can make a person quickly feel sick. 

Based on the roadmap and past interviews it seems like the native client is what is deemed to solve many of the speed issues, but will be at the expense of introducing more hurdles for people to jump into the world. This strategy might prove to be costly in terms of user acquisition, so hopefully the web client will continue to be maintained.

For the good, the galleries themselves looked fantastic. One of the nice traits about Decentraland is that it encourages people to design the facade of their virtual world. In many virtual worlds like VRChat, creators mostly concern themselves with only what's visible to the users like interior spaces since their world is isolated. In the case of Decentraland, worlds are connected to each other on the grid, so designing the outside of your building to be attractive for people to check out the inside is very important.

Looking forward to the next one!