Zoolana has officially launched public Alpha NFT minting, marking the project’s first asset sale. Anyone with 2 SOL can now mint an NFT for the upcoming strategy game. The NFT will have permanent bonuses and make holders eligible for future token airdrops. The developers have also explained their unique design philosophy when it comes to NFTs as game assets.
Solana-based strategy game Zoolana aims to blend the aesthetically pleasing nature of art-focused NFTs with the in-game utility of NFTs designed as game assets. In a recent Medium post, the team described how their focus is to create a “deadly combination” of innovation and collectability.
The team cites Magic: The Gathering and Polar Engine (an art studio famous for League of Legends artwork) as major design influences. You can absolutely see the influences of those legends in the above artwork, along with the additional cards that have since become available due to the release of Alpha minting.
New to Zoolana? It’s a lore-rich blockchain-based strategy game in which players will battle each other over the limited resources of the region. The Zoolana NFTs currently available in the Alpha Minting event will be directly used as game assets and help players gain an edge on the competition. Along with controlling Zanis (the characters on the current NFTs), players will build communities, harvest resources, and upgrade equipment.
What About Alpha NFT Minting?
Alpha minting became available shortly after showcasing the design of the first Alpha NFT for Zoolana. Minting is currently available to the public and a fresh Alpha Edition Red NFT will cost 2 SOL. There is a total available supply of 8555 and at the time of this writing there are 7586 NFTs remaining.
Alpha Edition is a two-tiered release consisting of Blue and Red tokens. Both tokes grant the holder lifelong access to premium in Zoolana when the game launches, although it’s unclear exactly what “premium” means. Red tokens are currently available and provide additional benefits. Both tiers of Alpha Edition NFTs grant the following benefits:
- Zani profile picture airdrop
- Lore and narrative NFTs airdrop
- Access to closed beta testing
- A special indication in-game
- Access to an exclusive Discord channel
- Sneak peaks at upcoming game developments
Holders of Red tokens gain the following benefits:
- Airdrop and presale access to:
- in-game 3D character base model
- in-game 3D armor and weapons models
- exclusive skins and other cosmetics
Blue token holders will have presale access to each of the above assets, but will not receive the airdrop.
When Will Gameplay Be Available?
Gameplay is when the play-to-earn aspect of blockchain games truly comes to life, so it’s worth briefly going over the project’s roadmap as it pertains to gameplay. Notable gameplay milestones are:
- Q1 2022: Game development begins
- Q3 2022: Game teaser release and closed beta launch
- Q2 2023: Open beta publicly available
- Q4 2023: Full game release
You can full Zoolana’s full roadmap on their website. It’s worth considering the amount of time before play-to-earn elements will be available. Without them, buying and selling NFTs along with trading the game’s token (Q1 2023) will be the only earning opportunities.
Keep in mind that this roadmap isn’t abnormal, this game is just freshly announced and so it’s normal for gameplay to be pretty far away. You should expect to wait a while before planning to take over the Zoolana valley with your friends.
What is Zoolana?
Zoolana is an NFT-based strategy game where players will build communities that battle each other for the limited resources of Zoolana. The game takes place on Earth in the year 2300 in the region called Zoolana. It’s nestled in an isolated valley in the Rocky Mountains and is intended to shelter citizens from the chaos enveloping the rest of the world.
Wealthy citizens built Zoolana as the last refuge of “society” where they could live lavish lifestyles without worrying about the world collapsing. Zoolana technology advanced quickly and soon they were able to engineer animals called Zanis that were designed for battle in the Colleseum. Eventually, they made the creatures have human intelligence to make the fights even better.
It all backfired as the battle-hardened Zanis eventually rebelled and killed every last citizen of Zoolana. The newly freed Zanis split into three tribes and spread out throughout the valley. Peace lasted for 50 years, but dwindling resources have forced conflict on the tribes.
This is where the upcoming game takes place. Players will control Zanis, build communities, harvest resources, and battle each other for control over Zoolana. The project’s whitepaper provides additional details about the gameplay and what players can expect from upcoming developments. This project is quite new, but it’s definitely one to watch.