Why I Turned Myself into an NFT

Marguerite deCourcelle
7 min readJul 12, 2020
Concept art from Neon District by Hardy Fowler.

Launching Coin’s E-Den

I, coin_artist, tokenized myself as an NFT to found a syndicate called “Coin’s E-Den”, establishing myself as the syndicate boss, and thereby extending ownership of my brand to the shardholders. A syndicate is a group of individuals or organizations combined to promote some common interest. In this article I outline the steps to fractionalize ownership of this experience and what this means for the future of influencers and gaming as powered by blockchain.

Who is coin_artist

Marguerite deCourcelle aka YT coin_artist

My brand Coin_artist is heavily associated with gaming and puzzles, since I am the credited inventor of crypto puzzles as well as the CEO of Blockade Games, a blockchain game studio. In 2019 I had the privilege of speaking at both NASA and Google on the topic of blockchain gaming. My success is largely due to the brilliant minds around me. I have seen first-hand the power of a strong community who has helped me lay claim to these accomplishments, and now I finally see the opportunity to bridge the gap and share this success.

I fell down the bitcoin rabbithole in 2013. I contributed by making portraits for crypto publications as a fine artist, I participated in the very early speculative markets, and I mined bitcoin and altcoins with my gaming GPUs. My fascination with crypto and the open source community connected me with many brilliant unconventional thought leaders who helped nurture me along the way. By extending my brand to my community, they will have an immediate incentive to co-create the social network and Neon District universe alongside myself and Blockade Games.

“Great Founders find themselves doing something so core to who they are, that it is simply an extension of their personality; for no other founder is this statement truer than for Marguerite deCourcelle.” — Caroline Toch, Techstars Program Manager, NYC Demo Day

Why Coin’s E-Den

Coin’s E-Den is the first ever Neon District syndicate and largely a social experiment. It is a combination of a closed social network, co-operative gaming, shared brand identity, token gamification, strategic planning, and reward distribution mechanisms. The syndicate is broken out into a structure which benefits all participants, incubating an immersive community woven into the cyberpunk lore of the Neon District universe.

Ideas, secrets, and collaborations which spawn from the syndicate may be strategically introduced into other social platforms as well as Neon District. This will be my elite and trusted community from which I will engage directly, creatively and personally. I will share insights and developments on a much more intimate level with these participants.

Why Now

I recently shared why I believe the relationship between influencers and games they promote are on track to become more closely integrated. This is important because the way influencers monetize their brand and engage their community is an ongoing challenge to outperform each other. There are a few methods influencers adopt in order to build their communities and followings. They stream games, compete in e-tournaments, educate players, and set up exciting rivalries for entertainment.

Influencers participate in giveaways for their followers, spend numerous hours engaging with their fans on social networks, hosting special events and personal AMAs. Being an influencer, especially in gaming, is a full-time job. You are a skilled gamer, an exceptional teacher, and an unprecedented marketer. Not only will tokenized game assets become a new tool that influencers leverage to increase their engagement, they’ll also seed additional areas in blockchain that we will see explored for this purpose.

We now have the tools to bridge the gap between traditional game companies, influencers, and respective communities. There is untapped potential for the influencers and communities to better monetize the work they already do. Creating independent economic systems and capturing this value will funnel into a more lucrative game economy. In order to push this idea forward we need to prove that this value proposition is credible. We are near an opportune time to take this conversation wider, beyond crypto speculation.

Why an NFT and Financial Implications

By tokenizing “coin_artist” into an NFT, I am essentially tokenizing my brand.

But how can I extend the value of my brand to my following?

This is possible today due to the ability to fractionalize my NFT into ERC20s that can be shared collectively.

Why would I start with an NFT and not simply a limited supply of ERC20s?

The NFT is tied to the metadata that I assign to it, meaning in the future the asset could take on new traits, such as becoming a celebrity game asset across multiple platforms that owners can play and loan. To learn more about unique properties of NFTs, read this section on NFTs and metadata by OpenSea.

Owners would have the ability to not only loan the asset but also gain access to yield farming. Syndicate members will have the ability to earn shards by participating in discussions, voting, and playing individually or as teams within the Neon District game.

“When factoring in the price of these tokens, there are exponential returns to be earned for trading in harvested governance tokens.” — Cooper Turley

To the same effect, COIN shards will only be accessible to those performing value-added actions within my community, creating a holistic ecosystem of highly aligned individuals.

Levels and Social Roles

Beyond financial perks, there are social and in-game incentives thanks to token controlled access. By owning shards of “coin_artist”, one can gain access to a closed social network with a gamified tier structure. Since we use techniques in Discord to tie usernames to addresses, we can reward shards for contributing to the social network and brand, allowing participants to climb the ranks and earn more ownership and authority over the brand.

*Unlike Founders Keys which give owners early access to Neon District item sales, in-progress game builds, and in-game advantages, coin_artist shards are a part of my personal social experiment; However, since I am also CEO of Blockade, I will flex my right to leverage creative opportunities that crafting a game universe provides

In-Game Perks

Neon District will publish a supplemental announcement in near future covering in-game perks and development milestones to support the custom features. We will explore minting in-game gear and characters at the syndicates discretion. Shardholders will have access to different levels based on a variety of factors. When a new level is achieved, a social badge is earned and displayed within the community and in the game.

Discord Perks

Social onboarding for coin_artist shards — called COIN — will be listed as ERC20 tokens on the Niftex exchange in the coming weeks.

  • Discord access in July, Early Access starting by September, Profile badge by mid-September.
  • Early access to Neon District updates, within a few days to a week ahead of public release.
  • Your Neon District profile displays Syndicate badge and level.
  • Access to dedicated syndicate tiered channels within Neon District Discord.

Niftex has seen strong traction in the fractionalized NFT ecosystem as of late, most notably through the distribution of shards for popular crypto assets like Axies and crypto art. Using Niftex as a launchpad introduces the concept to a new audience of users, along with giving early supporters the confidence this launch is being led by a trusted platform.

The amount of shards offered through Niftex will be announced at a later date, and I encourage those who have participated in past launches to share their opinion on what has been enticing to them in previous offerings.

$COIN Supply and Distribution

Total shard supply available for the coin_artist NFT will be 3,470,000 tokens, with each shard representing fractional ownership of the NFT. I will be distributing allocations of COIN to syndicate developers, Blockade Games team members, as well as valuable contributors dictated at my discretion. People who own a Neon District Trophy or God Key will be receiving 347 COIN from the initial distribution prior to availability on the exchange. More details regarding supply and price per shard will be disclosed prior to token launch on the Niftex exchange.

Launch and Additional Information

This experiment in NFT fractionalization paves the framework for other creator’s and gaming assets to come. To follow the latest news on the syndicate and exchange listing, follow Neon District, coin_artist and Niftex on Twitter as well as the Niftex discord which has a launch announcement channel. I hope this experiment creates an immersive exclusive social network where roleplaying and world building establishes a deeper gaming and digital asset ownership experience. Thank you and I hope you will consider participating!

Sincerely,
Marguerite deCourcelle aka YT coin_artist
CEO, Blockade Games

Update: The token listing for $COIN will occur mid-August, distribution details and update prior to listing.

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Marguerite deCourcelle

Marguerite deCourcelle (aka coin_artist) is a technologist, game designer, and blockchain enthusiast. She is the CEO of Blockade Games