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What NFTs Have Fared Best in the Current Bear Market?

The NFT craze hit the internet by storm in 2021, causing a cascade of speculation on digital assets which had first hit the mainstream in 2017.

NFTs are notorious for their sometimes ludicrous price and volatility. Famously, Jack Dorsey’s first tweet sold first for $2.9 million then resold for just $280. Which NFTs have survived the bear market? Find out below.

Bored Ape Yacht Club

The Yuga Labs Brand

The Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) launched in 2021 near the beginning of the NFT craze. BAYC became popular as awareness of NFTs hit mainstream news, as well as offering holders of BAYC assets exclusive perks available only to BAYC holders.

The first bored apes sold for 0.08 ETH, or around $190 at the time, and Yuga Labs were sold out in less than a day. Since then, the bored apes have sold for an average of 84 ETH, or roughly $344,000 according to Market Insider. As of the time of writing, Bored Apes are the #1 NFT asset by sales volume according to coinmarketcap.

Part of what puts the Bored Apes in the top spot is celebrity ownership of the assets. Mark Cuban, Snoop Dogg, Paris Hilton, and Serena Williams are just some of the celebrities known for owning a Bored Ape NFT.

The Bored Apes are probably safe so long as the celebrities are holding them. As well, Bored Ape has hosted events in New York City, Hong Kong, and the UK such as yacht parties for its members.

Not only does the Bored Ape collection have celebrity backing, but it also comes with networking perks and of course the fact that these are probably just cool parties to be at, which adds to the value of the NFT.

Yuga Labs has since expanded beyond the Bored Ape collection and offers other NFT collections as well, which are also in some of the top spots by sales volume, such as the spinoff, Mutant Ape Yacht Club.

It’s safe to say that Yuga Labs has established themselves as a premium NFT brand that has continued to offer its perks, which is keeping them faring well through the bear market.

For those keeping track at home BAYC peaked at a floor price of 128 ETH ($349,312) on April 30. At the time this article was published the floor price for an Ape is 36.3 ETH ($67,404). Still it’s certainly higher from the mint price of $190!


One of the earliest NFT collections, Cryptopunks has been an established name in the NFT scene for a while now. Before there was BAYC, there was the Cryptopunks occupying the spot of top selling NFT collection. At the time of writing, Cryptopunks hold the #10 spot of NFT sales volume according to coinmarketcap.

Cryptopunks launched in 2017, when NFTs hit the mainstream for the first time. They were originally launched for no cost, with users claiming them by only paying for the gas fees required for transfer. Unlike BAYC, Cryptopunks offers no access to real life events. The staying power of Cryptopunks may be due to their early entrance to the NFT scene and arguably being the collection responsible for the start of the NFT craze in 2021.

Cryptopunks were procedurally generated, meaning they were developed by an algorithm and not a human artist. Some buyers may identify Cryptopunks as being among the first AI generated artworks and this may contribute to their value. Cryptopunks have been sold at elite auctions, namely Sotheby’s.

Sotheby’s sold Cryptopunk #7523 at auction for $11.75 million USD in 2021. This sale is the 5th most expensive NFT sale ever, and the 2nd most valuable Cryptopunk ever sold, the first being Cryptopunk #5822 which sold for $23.7 million USD, also in 2021.

The Cryptopunks IP was acquired by the previously mentioned Yuga Labs in March of 2022, for an unreleased price. Yuga Labs gave commercial rights of Cryptopunks to their respective owners shortly after their acquisition of the IP, which has since contributed to the value of Cryptopunks.

The Punks peaked at a floor price of 113 ETH ($389,398 USD) on Oct. 8, 2021. The current floor is 45.5 ETH ($84,292) at the time of publication.

Utility NFTs

As previously mentioned, BAYC NFTs offer holder’ access to real world events. An NFT that offers access to something tangible/material is seen as more desirable in the world of NFT collecting.

Technically BAYC is a utility NFT, but in general utility NFTs as a category are largely the ones retaining their value, as can be seen most notably with BAYC. One noteworthy utility NFT is the Coachella NFT (which is unfortunately frozen on FTX’s network while the case continues), which grants the holder lifetime access to Coachella events. Utility NFTs also include assets which are usable in metaverse game worlds such as Decentraland.

Big name brands are also picking up on the potential of utility NFTs. Nike and Adidas are both developing NFT products as well as expanding where their NFT products can be used by NFT holders.

Nike has launched the .Swoosh program which will integrate into Fifa titles developed by EA Games, which is a hugely popular title. This will allow players who own Nike NFTs to integrate their NFTs into Fifa titles released by EA. Whether or not this catches on with players, remains to be seen. Microtransactions in gaming have proven effective in increasing sales numbers.

Summary: Very Few Survive

To sum up, the NFTs which have survived the bear market are NFTs which have a long history of trading within the NFT space, such as Cryptopunks. Utility NFTs are also a strong contender for assets which will survive the bear market, such as the BAYC NFTs. Assets which have celebrity backing and endorsements have also survived.

If you are considering getting into the NFT space these days, make sure the NFT is attached to something tangible or has a history. Otherwise, you’re entering uncharted waters when it comes to the predictable value of the asset.

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Michael Brown

About the Author

Michael Brown

Michael Brown is the acting Chairman of community based thought collective, Subcultural Research Lab. His interest in Crypto began while studying industrial engineering in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. His passion lies in geopolitics, social phenomenon, and the exchange of data. You can find Subcultural Research Lab at

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