Should You Invest In MetaZoo NFTs?

MetaZoo is a Trading Card Game (TCG) that recently released a batch of NFTs. After an initial drop, the company took steps to ensure a floor of value, and now the MetaZoo tokens have climbed in price again. So are they worth investing in?

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Episode Highlights

MetaZoo Heads ‘Into The Wilderness’ For Next Booster Set: “The next MetaZoo TCG set sends Casters into the vast forests in search of new cryptids. It expands the world beyond the Veil past the edge of the forest where Bigfoot and the Cumberland Dragon make their homes. This booster set will come in 36-count Booster Boxes (MSRP $139.99 per display), Blister Boosters (MSRP $119.76 per display), Spellbooks (MSRP $49.99), Theme Decks (MSRP per $149.90), and a Release Event Box (MSRP $19.99).” (ICv2)

The Cards And Cardboard Podcast: Ep 41 [Jump to 46:20 for MetaZoo NFT discussion]: “Today we have our friend Catchacraze. He gave us his input on everything from what the Pokémon company can do different to his thoughts on the Metazoo NFTs.” (YouTube)

Why did MetaZoo NFTs go up recently?: “[Comment] These aren’t just normal NFTs, they have utility, and will have utility throughout the lifespan of MetaZoo… think of them as a membership card or VIP pass rather than just an NFT.” (YouTube)

The MetaZoo NFT Collection

About The Show

NFT Investor Nation is the show for passionate NFT traders, collectors and investors. Listen in as host Scott Hawksworth talks with leading NFT artists and entrepreneurs.

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Transcript

Scott: Hello, and welcome to another episode of “NFT Investor Nation” presented by Cryptogic. I’m your host Scott Hawksworth back with you once again, Episode Number 2. So excited to be here and joined once again by Andy Hagans. Andy, welcome.

Andy: Hi, Scott. How you doing today?

Scott: Doing great. And I’m really excited because we’re going to be talking NFTs, of course. We’re going to be talking trading card games. Exactly. He’s holding that up there. And I’m a bit of a trading card game nerd myself, I guess, the OG trading card game. I’m a collector of Magic: The Gathering.

I like playing it and old-school Magic: The Gathering. We’re talking ’93, ’94 back when I was a kid. So, you know, if you’re unfamiliar with trading card games, they’re obviously a lot of passion and they have utility. So, Andy, I guess to kick things off before we dive into MetaZoo NFTs and the MetaZoo trading card game, can you talk to us a bit about trading card games and really the collector aspect of it and your passion for them?

Andy: Yeah, absolutely. And, you know, MetaZoo is really interesting how this world is intersecting with NFTs. So, let’s see. Boy, I’m getting old. I was born in ’83, right?

And Magic: The Gathering came out in 1993 when I was 10 years old, and then it really grew in, like, 1994 and 1995. So, like, right when I was in the kind of, you know, the age when boys get really obsessed with collecting things like baseball cards, football cards, comic books, collectible card games, or whatever. And so I was like a collectible card game superfan.

As you mentioned, the OG, I don’t know if it was the first, but Magic: The Gathering, really the first one to hit the mainstream.

Scott: Yeah. I think that’s more accurate to state. Yeah.

Andy: Yeah. And it was interesting. I remember back then, you know, going to the store and there’d be Magic: The Gathering. And, like, that game was a smash hit. And with about a year, there were just like dozens of other collectible card games or trading card games. And almost none of those lasted. In fact, I don’t think any of them did, although the next game that came out that was a huge hit later in the ’90s along with the video game was Pokemon.

And now fast-forwarding to 2020, 2021, 2022, Pokemon and Magic: The Gathering, those old cards back from the ’90s, the cards that, you know, I wish I would have kept as a kid that I had in 1994, they have skyrocketed in price, so have the Pokemon cards, you know, where PSA 10 Charizard is… – Yeah.

Everybody wants the Charizard’s, right?

Scott: Yeah. But it’s six figures now. It’s right up there with a Mickey Mantle rookie card. Or maybe not quite right up there, but, I mean, it’s in the big leagues as a collectible, big, big money.

Andy: That’s a big-league collectible price point there. Yeah.

Scott: Exactly. And so because Magic and Pokemon have made so much money and amassed these huge brands, I think Pokemon is actually the most valuable brand in the world. There are always new entrepreneurs looking to release new trading card games. And so the idea of a trading card game, it’s a game like Uno or any other card game, but they have that collectability aspect where, you know, you build your own deck of cards rather than sharing a deck with someone else, and so you’re incentivized to go out and, you know, buy these packs of cards to make your deck stronger so you can win the game.

And that’s how these companies… That’s how they make…you know, basically print money when they… – Well, and, Andy, to jump in there, as I was kind of saying at the top, the utility aspect, I think, is so significant with trading card games. Of course, a Spider-Man Number 1 is amazing as a great collectible, but, you know, you read it. And it’s there.

Whereas, “Oh, here’s a card where it may have a lot of value not only because it’s rare or whatever, but it also helps you win the game.” So, yeah.

Andy: It’s a game piece. Exactly. And it’s collectible. And there’s the whole art aspect. So, you know, of course, between collectability, and art, and rarity, you know, what do those things remind you of? NFTs.

Scott: Hmm.

Andy: Right. So, enter MetaZoo. So, now, by the way, it must be said that Magic: The Gathering and Pokemon really spiked in 2020 when we had all of these lockdowns and, you know, the government came in, printed money, and sent everybody checks. It was like nobody had anything to do…

Scott: People were plowing stimulus right into collectibles.

Andy: Buying old Pokemon cards, buying old Magic cards. And so there was actually…it seemed like there was kind of a new wave of collectible card games because I think entrepreneurs kind of figured out, like, “Hey, if I can make my game into a hit and, even get 1% of the attention that Magic or Pokemon get, it could be a real, a brand, a company with staying power.”

So, MetaZoo is one of these newer games. And I actually, in preparation for this episode, I bought a pack of cards. I’m going to open them right now just to check the cards out because, I mean, I think the art and the physical product is a big aspect of collecting these. And, you know, some people who buy into these card games are speculating.

Scott: Yeah, of course.

Andy: Some of them are buying it to play, and some of them are speculating, everywhere in between. So, here’s the first card I got. And you can see there’s like a little critter, kind of a little Pokemon type thing. Here’s the back of the card. The backs of the cards, you know, they all have to look identical because when you play a game like this, you know, you don’t want to have any marked cards. Here’s a little critter in a ghost costume or something.

It’s kind of a cutesy art. I mean, it does remind me of Pokemon a little bit. The art actually it looks like it might be hand-painted, like watercolors. So, that’s kind of cool. A lot of these card games have moved into digital art. Okay. Now, here we have a foil card.

I don’t know if you can see it.

Scott: Oh, yeah.

Andy: The shiny… So, like, the foil… – Magic: The Gathering players are familiar.

Scott: Exactly. Like a foil Charizard or, you know, foil Pokemon, foil Magic card. Those are always extra valuable. These are the actual cards. I think as these kind of card games go, Scott. I think this one looks pretty cool.

I like the art style. And one thing I can tell right away, some of these games get super-complicated. And, you know, there’s a card that’s like a wall of text. And that’s kind of a difference between old-school magic where the game mechanics are pretty simple. There might be like one line of text on each card and the new-school magic cards, if you look at them, they have like 20 lines of text, and I’m like, “How’s a kid supposed to keep track of all these mechanics?”

Andy: Right?

Scott: But you could… Yeah. I kind of think that the games that do really well in this space are those that can find that sweet spot of appealing to kids and adults. I mean, when you think of Pokemon, obviously, you think of kids. But I’ll tell you, there are some adults that spend a lot of money on Pokemon. So, this game, MetaZoo, from what I understand, you know, it’s still pretty small, but it’s relatively successful in the sense that between either collectors, or players, or speculators, you know, they’ve sold out their initial waves of products.

And the way these games tend to work is they’ll release a batch of product like an initial set, or first edition, or alpha set, whatever you want to call it, then they may or may not reprint that initial set, and then they start to do expansion sets. And, you know, depending on the way you play the game, sometimes only the newer cards are legal to play.

So, again, you know, kind of incentivizing you to buy the new cards. But the really successful games will release 3, or 4, or 5 different sets a year on a schedule, like, every 8 weeks, every 12 weeks, something like that.

Andy: Right. And MetaZoo has one coming up actually March 31st. I think they have an expansion set that’s going to be released as well. So, they are following this playbook, right?

Scott: Awesome. Yeah, yeah. And it appears to me, you know, again, I don’t think they’re, like, huge, but, you know, in the collectibles world, in the Magic: The Gathering world, I think there’s a little bit of buzz about them, and they’ve gained a little bit of traction, and now they’ve released a couple different NFT series. And so why don’t we kind of segue into the NF…

Andy: Yeah, I think that’s a perfect segue into that.

Scott: Yeah, go ahead.

Andy: Well, I haven’t followed this too closely, but I kind of knew what MetaZoo, was and I just, like, by accident, stumbled across to the fact that they’d released an NFT collection. And I looked into this after the fact. So, I didn’t watch it happen in real time. But the way they released it, they had some sort of whitelist.

And I’m not sure how a person got onto the whitelist. Sometimes NFT creators have a whitelist with people who purchased past collections. And I think that may have been the case here that they had a prior collection. But this new collection of NFTs that they released of these MetaZoo game tokens, they gave the holders of the token utility, real-world utility relative to the game.

And so I think that’s kind of the primary way that they were marketed rather than the art. I mean, art is to everyone’s, you know, tastes, so, you know, I’m not going to judge the art on this series.

What do you think, Scott? What do you think of the art here?

Scott: I mean, the art is okay. I think it’s, from an artistic standpoint, you know, just subjectively, not necessarily something that excites me. But I think when we talk about NFTs, you know, our last episode we were talking a lot about the art and about what appeals to you and, “Oh, look at these cute little squishy balls.” Those kinds of things are appealing, but then you have this utility aspect.

So, you can kind of, I guess, almost put the art to the side a little bit depending on what you’re looking for and what you’re looking to get out of that NFT. And if there’s real-world value to it, especially when we’re talking about a trading card game that’s collectible, and then might have cards that are rare or allow you to have, you know, access, you know, first stab at the next expansion or whatever it may be, the next booster pack, that is… It’s just a whole different ballgame and it really takes the NFT, I think, to a different place, if that makes sense.

Andy: Yeah, it does. And, I mean, it kind of makes sense. I think in the world of these games and in the world of, like, sneaker collecting, sports card collecting, you have whales, right? You have your whales that, basically, these people who, whether it’s Air Jordans, or Magic: The Gathering booster boxes, or whatever it is, who are just going to buy anything that you release, and it’s, like, they just, they’re a superfan.

I think that’s what Burger King used to call them, the superfans. And so I think it’s a way that allows the company or the brand to sort of interact with their superfans give them this digital token that they can buy that’s, frankly, going to raise a substantial amount of capital for the brand.

And it also kind of gives the superfans almost like a form of equity, right, because it’s almost like they’re investing in the attractiveness of early access to these future releases. And so I think the way that MetaZoo released these, and I don’t have all the details, but I know it was a Dutch auction, and they gave early access to folks on the whitelist.

I think that was around 0.1 ETH to buy one of the tokens. And then they did a Dutch auction a few days later. And I think where it landed, the floor was around 0.3 ETH. And so, you know, it’s pretty substantial amount of money. I don’t know exactly what ETH was at the time, but, you know, it’s close to $1,000.

So, you know, the buyers of these NFTs, you know, they were investing a substantial amount of money in the idea that, “Well, I’m going to get early access to future releases.” But then what happened next, Scott?

Scott: Well, so, then what happened next is we saw the price decline a bit more and it almost bottomed out. And that was interesting too because one of the aspects of these tokens is that they weren’t one-time use, and said, “Well, if you have this NFT, you get this access for the life of it.” But then what was interesting is that MetaZoo released, they’d had booster boxes, and they released another run of them that was identical to the first one, but they were marked blue on the outside of the boxes…

Andy: With like a sticker or something?

Scott: Yeah, with like a sticker. And they were special exclusive for NFT holders and MetaZoo NFT token holders. And then what, a really interesting thing happened is that those boxes themselves started showing up on the secondary market and their prices started increasing. And then the NFTs themselves also started increasing.

It was almost like proof is in the pudding of, “Oh, look, here’s an exclusive thing for NFT holders, therefore, exclusivity, rarity.” These are all things, when we are talking about collectibles, when we’re talking about NFTs, that really excite people and excite both the players, the collectors, and the speculators, right?

Andy: Yeah. And so, you know, the price had bottomed out, but I think it was in January that it recovered there, you know, when they released those special booster boxes, and I think it recovered to, like, 0.37, 0.38 ETH. And I just checked today, and that’s right around where they’re trading at floor price.

May have been a little bit higher, but in the high, you know, 0.38, 0.39 ETH, somewhere around there. So, you know, I think it’s cool. It shows that, you know, a company can release NFT collection. And somewhat, this is still somewhat the Wild West, like, you don’t really know how the markets going to react, the secondary market, how it’s going to treat these NFT collections after they’re released into the wild.

And so you can kind of see an example of a company that, you know, pivots maybe, or maybe this is planned all along, I don’t know, but to sort of support that value, that floor price that people bought in on. And so I think the interesting question is, you know, is this… I guess the main… If you’re considering buying an NFT for MetaZoo, you know, you should like the game, would say, if you’re a MetaZoo…

Scott: You should be somewhat…you should think the game’s good or at least has a good chance at really having stay in power like Magic: The Gathering, or Pokemon, or something like that. Right?

Andy: Yeah. So, I mean, asking the question, should you buy a MetaZoo NFT? Is this a good investment? To me, I’m just going to answer that with another question. Where is the game going to go? Because I think if the NFT continues to have utility to early access or special release products and this game is still around in 10 years, even if it’s like the 10th most popular trading card game, collectible card game, you know, it doesn’t have to grow to be as big as Magic or Pokemon.

Scott: Sure. Of course.

Andy: Right. But even if it kind of… If you can get past five years at this pretty competitive business, and I think any game that survives past, you know, five years has staying power. So, if they can get there, then I imagine that the value of these NFTs will continue to grow. Conversely, if the game doesn’t last, then I don’t know what the floor price is. It might get pretty close to zero.

Scott: It might go really low. Or if the exclusive benefits of having the NFT just start to not be that compelling to the players, or to the collectors, or what have you, then that could also happen. So, I think that, like anything, it can go either way, but I think that there are these…there’s just such an interesting framework here.

And kind of to bring it to, you know, Magic: The Gathering, for example, it’s such an interesting thing, like, what well, is Magic, as Wizards of the Coast, are they going to release some kind of NFT that then gives Magic players who have that NFT exclusive access to new releases or something else?

And they’ve already kind of… It’s not an NFT, but they already have arena, which is, you know, digital products, digital forms of their cards, so I just think there’s so much potential here.

Andy: But, Scott, big difference. Actually, huge, massive difference.

Scott: Yeah.

Andy: So, Hasbro with their Magic: The Gathering brand, big brand, do they have that digital game arena? It’s not on the blockchain, right? It’s in their closed… ‘

Scott: Right, exactly.

Andy: That’s the cool thing with NFTs is they’re on the blockchain. In a certain sense, they’re out of the ecosystem, you know, but in another sense, though, I think an interesting aspect of this is when you buy into an NFT like that, you’re sort of buying into a promise from the company, right, because what if, you know, the company decides, “Well, we don’t want to give you early access to the 7th, or 8th, or 9th, or 10th expansion set. You’ve kind of gotten enough. You got the first four, or first five, or whatever.”

So, you know, it’s not like have a, necessarily you have like a written contract of what you’re going to get by owning it. But on the other hand, if the company burns the owners, the holders of that first original series of NFTs, then who’s going to buy their next upcoming release of NFTs? So, I think there is an incentive for the companies to, you know, make good on them and kind of support that floor price because all these games, Magic, Pokemon, MetaZoo, they want to have the impression that if you buy our product, whether it’s digital product or physical product, these cards that, you know, you actually have some value.

So, like, if you think back, you know, all the money that my mom spent on Magic cards when I was 11 or 12 years old, if I would have held on to them and sold them today, I’d be getting my money back and then some.

Scott: And then some.

Andy: Yeah. Now, imagine, just to me, you already mentioned Magic, just a thought exercise. Think about if the Pokemon company, you know, Pokemon, biggest brand in the world as far as I understand, the most valuable brand in the world. Think about if they did a series of NFTs that gave you early access to their video games or early access to their expansion, you know, card releases or maybe even special foil editions of certain cards.

Just think of how valuable that would be. Or what about Disney? What if there was a Disney token that gave you certain benefits when you visited Disney World, whether, you know, perks, skipping the line, or however all those perk systems… I don’t think companies are going to be able to stay away from, you know, the financial possibilities, the possibilities to interact with their superfans and, you know, raise capital like this.

But I think what’s happening is, you know, these bigger brands, they can be risk-averse or, you know, rightly so. If you own Disney, you don’t want to mess with Disney IP. I mean, that’s very, very valuable IP. You don’t want to burn it. But these newer games like the MetaZoos of the world versus Pokemons are kind of the upstart contenders and it’s like, they can afford to take a risk, they can afford to experiment a little bit, but if they have success, I definitely would anticipate that we see other brands, you know, competing brands, maybe a lot bigger brands, they’re not going to be able to resist dipping their toes into these waters.

Scott: Absolutely. And, Andy, you were talking about, you know, the importance of these companies delivering and that being part of the potential value. And I think that’s why whatever we’re talking about with NFTs whether it’s, you know, the Squishiverse or more, you know, art-based NFTs that are just about community or something that has this real-world utility like we’re talking about with MetaZoo, the big thing is the roadmap.

And what is the roadmap that, you know, the creator of those NFTs releases? And are they following up on it? Are they doing what they said they would do? Are they enabling the things that they said they enable? Are they developing what they said they would? This all really goes into the confidence that you can have in those series. And it’s something to keep in mind because if they’re not delivering, that’s when you start to have valid concerns of, “Okay. Well, is this the kind of thing where, you know, I need to get out and get some liquidity and move on?”

So, I think that looking at that aspect is really key as well. So, whether it is MetaZoo, NFTs or something else, I think that there’s clearly a lot here to digest and a lot of potential. So, if you’re evaluating it from an investment standpoint or a speculative standpoint, these are the kinds of questions I think that are really important to ask.

Yeah.

Andy: Yeah, Scott. So, I have a proposal. Me and you play the game and then if it’s fun, maybe we buy one of these NFTs. If it’s not fun, then, you know, I’m going to pass.

Scott: I love it. I love it. We’ve got our Magic games we play. So, let’s throw this in there. Let’s add a MetaZoo game going.

Andy: Sounds good, Scott.

Scott: All right. Thanks, Andy.

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Scott Hawksworth

Hailing from Evanston, Illinois, Scott is co-founder of Cryptogic as well as host of the several popular crypto podcasts. Scott believes that cryptocurrencies and NFTs represent a once-in-a-generation opportunity for investors of all types to participate in the future of decentralized networks.