As Solana (SOL) continues its astronomical rise, all eyes are on Solana NFT collections. Just weeks back, SOL overtook Cardano to become the fourth largest cryptocurrency across the world, reaching an all-time high of $260. While it’s currently at the fifth position by market cap (still above Cardano), it continues to rally. At the time of writing, it had reached around $201, after rising nearly 6% in the past seven days.
SOL’s growth has resulted in a slew of NFT collections dropping on the Solana blockchain. In fact, according to HowRare.is, hundreds of NFT projects are slated to release on Solana in the coming days. Of course, not all the collections are great—some are even copycats of popular Ethereum projects. But there are a bunch of projects that steal the show and are a favourite among NFT collectors. Before we dive into these projects, first let’s understand why an increasing number of users are moving to the Solana blockchain.
While the majority of the NFT projects are hosted on the Ethereum blockchain, it has several drawbacks. This includes slow transaction speeds, low scalability, and of course, the major issue nagging collectors and creators alike: the high gas fees. As a result, users are moving to other blockchains such as Solana, which has emerged as a leading competitor to Ethereum. There are a couple of reasons for this.
First, Solana can perform more transactions per unit of time than Ethereum. While Solana performs 65,000 TPS (transactions per second), for Ethereum, it’s just 13 TPS. Furthermore, the former has significantly lower gas fees—the average cost per transaction is just $0.00025.
Additionally, as opposed to Ethereum, Solana uses the proof of stake (PoS) model, which is much more energy-efficient. One transaction on the blockchain consumes just as much energy as two Google searches, according to Yahoo. On the other hand, Ethereum, which uses the proof of work (PoW) protocol, has an energy consumption equivalent to that of a US household for 6.88 days.
Thus, it comes as no surprise that Solana blockchain’s usage is rising astronomically. In fact, SOL’s value has jumped around 10,630 % year-to-date.
Best Solana NFT collections
Let’s take a look at the hottest NFT collections on Solana:
1. Degenerate Ape Academy
Degenerate Ape Academy is the top NFT collection on Solana by market cap, according to Solanalysis. To date, the blue-chip project has attained a market cap of over $503 million (at the time of writing). The collection features 10,000 unique “smoothest brained” apes engaged in “degenerate behaviour”. Furthermore, the holders of the NFT get utility and exclusive access to the “Academy”.
Like many of the blue-chip projects, Degen Ape is also backed by a strong community. While it has over 82,000 followers on Twitter, its Discord is 18,000 members strong. The collection’s traits, rarity, and striking 3D artwork have all made it a favourite among collectors.
While the mint price was just 6 SOL, today, the floor has reached 29.5 SOL! Furthermore, the collection’s popularity has been instrumental in the growth of Solana. For one, Degenerate Ape’s launch in August helped SOL power through the market crash in May. Besides, a Degenerate Ape—Degen Ape #7225—was Solana’s first million-dollar NFT sale!
2. Solana Monkey Business
Solana Monkey Business (SMB) is another blue-chip project on Solana. The collection of 5000 unique randomly generated monkeys aims to “reject humanity, return to monke”. Each Solana Monkey was created from over 99 traits across six layers, with some NFTs being rarer than the others. The collection offers holder-only benefits, a community wallet, as well as a future voting system. Limited edition SMB merch is also on the roadmap.
Remarkably, a Solana Monkey recently sold for $2 million, creating history as the highest sold NFT on Solana. While the collection launched at 2 SOL, the floor is now at a whopping 124.7 SOL! Meanwhile, SMB’s market cap is over $182 million (at the time of writing). Moreover, even celebrities like Steve Harvey owns one of these 2D, pixelated NFTs!
Unlike the PFP projects we discussed before, Frakt features unique, randomly generated fractal art NFTs. These are generated from five different shapes and four colour schemes. The collection, like Degen Apes and Solana Monkeys, is scarce with 10,000 NFTs in total. Furthermore, holders can stake Frakt to gain voting rights in the Frakt DAO. Additionally, they can also earn the utility and governance token, $FRKT by staking.
The mathematical nature of the intricate artworks makes Frakt quite a unique collection on the Solana blockchain. The collection aims to “push the Solana DeFi and NFT ecosystems forward, and beyond”. At the time of writing, the project’s market cap was around $23 million, with a 3.5 SOL floor.
Another hot NFT project on Solana is Aurory. Aurory is a play to earn game set in the virtual world of Antik and Cryptos. Here, players can collect tradable magical creatures, called NPCs and Nefties, and engage in various game modes. Furthermore, the Aurorian NFTs of the game works as avatars for early backers.
Besides, players can earn $AURY token by playing the different modes in the game. They can then trade these tokens on exchanges as well as on the Aurory marketplace. Moreover, in the future, the game will add governance capabilities to the token. While the game is far from the success Axie Infinity enjoys in the space, it has accomplished some impressive feats. For one, the game’s Aurorian NFT sale saw over 150,000 minters. Secondly, it has raked in over $42 million in market cap and boasts of around 160,000 followers on Twitter!
5. Bold Badgers
Bold Badgers is a collection of 10,000 hand-drawn, randomly generated Bold Badgers NFTs. These unique Badgers are generated from over 170 traits, including outfits, fur, and more. Like most NFT projects, Badgers too offer exclusive perks to owners including competitions to win rewards. Furthermore, they also gave 10 SOL to those who minted a collaborative badger linked to “famous players in the Solana ecosystem”.
At the time of writing, Bold Badgers had a market cap of around $6 million. The floor price is currently at just 2.9 SOL.
While Solana’s popularity doesn’t compare to that of Ethereum, it is steadily becoming a strong contender to Ethereum. If you wish to dip your toes in this growing ecosystem, check out the collections we have listed. You can also look up other collections such as Boryoku Dragonz, Galactic Gecko Space Garage, and Shadowy Super Coder DAO. Whichever collection you decide to go with, make sure to do sufficient market research before minting!