NFTs have become a cultural phenomenon combining the best aspects of artistic creation, investing, and the power of the blockchain.
What Is An NFT?
(Explain it Like I’m 5 years old version)
NFTs are a new way to create digital art that can take a variety of forms from 2D images to music to 3D objects and even gaming assets or virtual plots of land.
What separates NFTs from other types of digital assets is that they’re each unique objects tied to the blockchain. That’s what makes them valuable and considered “non-fungible” that the “NF” in NFT. The “T” stands for token. Non-Fungibility is a fancy crypto way of saying one-of-a-kind.
You can switch out one twenty dollar bill for any other twenty dollar bill and it’d have the same value. They’re fungible. A rare piece of art like the Mona Lisa is non-fungible because you can’t exchange it for another piece of art or even a replica and expect it to carry the same value.
It simply wouldn’t as it’s not the original work.
If you’re looking for an alternative way to invest in crypto other than buying coins like Bitcoin and Ethereum, then NFTs are an excellent way to gain exposure to the market.
To create an NFT you have to “mint” the art onto the blockchain using either a platform like OpenSea or Rarible, or via a smart contract you’ve had custom developed.
Once the NFT is minted it can be traded between wallets in exchange for cryptocurrency.
Making NFTs does come with a cost in the form of gas fees.
Gas fees are triggered anytime your wallet interacts with the blockchain and they offset the computational work being done by miners who spend time and effort hashing transactions to the blockchain ledger.
The gas fees you pay become the rewards earned by miners for keeping the system supported.
On the Ethereum network gas fees have skyrocketed over the last several months. This is due to the explosion of activity in the NFT markets. This has led to the rise of alternative chains like Solana and Polygon that have much lower network fees.
If you are interested in getting involved with NFTs either as a creator, speculator, or collector then we recommend that you read on.
We have a list of some of the best sources to get NFTs for free. Follow our tips and you’ll be able to get your hands on some NFTs that you can start trading and building your portfolio.
How Do NFTs Work?
Before we go further, here’s a deeper explanation of how NFTs work.
As stated above, NFT stands for Non-Fungible Token and is a unique digital item that has a monetary value attached to it. NFTs can sell for potentially millions of dollars, but they can also be worthless and unsellable. Just like any other asset they range in value. A totaled car may not be worth anything, but a new Lamborghini may be worth hundreds of thousands.
- Learn more: Why are NFTs Worth So Much?
So don’t get too excited, NFTs are not the get rich quick scheme many people purport them to be. Making it in the NFT industry is no different than anything else and takes time, patience, strategy, hard work and probably a fair amount of luck.
In order to command prices in the thousands of dollars for your NFTs you need to build an audience and create demand.
Remember, potentially anything can become an NFT - a digital painting, a selfie, a music track you recorded.
You can upload any one of these onto your minting site of choice and, for a fee, get them listed into the marketplace as an NFT.
That said, be careful about what you turn into an NFT, if you don’t own the rights to the art or media you can get into trouble down the line for copyright infringement.
NFTs are interesting because of the range in rarity different NFTs hold. Just like paintings and sculptures in the physical art world, the uniqueness of the object contributes to its worth.
However, you can make multiple editions with the same art like artists do with physical prints.
For example, The Kings Of Leon made a set of limited editions of their latest album as NFTs that they then sold to die-hard fans for a tidy profit.
NFTs also have properties that a lot of physical artworks do not have and can never have!
One of the main benefits NFTs have over physical pieces is the royalty feature. When you mint an NFT you can set a percentage of every subsequent sale to go back to the original creator.
This means that you could earn a lifetime’s wages, provided that your artwork is valuable enough to be sold on again and again.
If you are a well-respected artist and expect your art to sell for larger than its original value, then taking a little cut on future sales makes a lot of sense. Almost all smart contracts have a royalty clause.
In order for your work to be fully considered an NFT it has to go through the process of minting.
Minting is how NFTs are tied into the blockchain and become verified as non-fungible tokens. Network miners take a small fee for their time, labor and computational power. This method of creating is decentralized and means that your NFTs are often not held by a third party but rather in self-custodial wallets. This means they are in your wallet and not protected by anything other than your own security measures.
You will almost always have to pay a gas fee to mint your NFTs even on a low fee blockchain like Polygon or Solana there’s still a small fee to hash the transaction and record it to the digital ledger AKA the blockchain.
Buying NFTs on Ethereum can be very expensive because of the price of gas, which is why new collectors often look for ways to gain NFTs for free without paying gas fees.
The Best Way Of Getting Free NFTs
Earning Free NFTs In Games
One method of earning NFTs for free is by signing up for an NFT-based game. These are games that have been designed specifically to encourage buying and trading NFTs.
These types of games are known as Play-to-Earn games (P2E).
P2E games are growing in number every day and may one day become the standard for all online games. The most popular P2E game in crypto is called Axie Infinity and has over 2 million players.
In Axie, you battle teams of creatures (your Axie’s) against other players' teams similar to Pokemon. Each Axie has different properties and you can buy, sell, and breed Axie’s on the market place. The thing is though, Axie’s aren’t free.
Other P2E games who don’t have as large a player-base as Axie often give away NFTs to incentivize people to join their P2E game ecosystem.
Many P2E games run off of a blockchain called WAX. To get started you’ll need a WAX account to interact with these projects.
A WAX account is a kind of digital wallet which you can use to store and trade your NFTs. They can be established through your social accounts including gmail email accounts.
All you have to do is connect your account to your digital wallet, to verify that it really is you that is trading the NFTs.
Once done, you can start playing games on the WAX chain such as Alien World, which issues free NFTs all the time.
The great thing about the game Alien Worlds is that you get two free NFTs by simply signing up to play the game in the first place.
Many other P2E also give out NFTs for free when you begin playing. Search on Twitter for projects that are offering NFTs as a starting bonus. With so many new P2E projects coming out there are new opportunities opening up every day.
Communities in games such as Alien Worlds will also give you rewards for active participation. Think of this as the same as when a shop gives you loyalty points for shopping at their store regularly.
There are plenty of games out there that are designed to boost NFT involvement and distribution.
These games thrive on user involvement and want to encourage the sale and distribution of their unique digital objects, as this will ultimately boost the profile and therefore the monetary value of the game itself.
Getting NFTs Through Giveaways
You can also get NFTs from projects on Twitter that frequently announce giveaways. Search hashtags or terms related to NFTs and see what project accounts pop up.
Some are not legitimate and use fake giveaways to farm “engagement” but others are for real.
Do you research and make sure the accounts and projects are for real. If they are promising to give away a Bored Ape or another super high value NFT the odds are it’s fugazi.
Usually to enter into the giveaway you will have to follow the project Twitter account and they may ask you to tag friends too. Their hope is that this will create a chain reaction of accounts tagging and help their project go viral and sell out.
Getting free NFTs that could have real future value takes work!
Getting an NFT for free - one that could have real value in the future - takes time and effort. But it can be done!
A lot of the time it is a matter of being “early” or being in the right place at the right time - “virtually” speaking. One of the best places to start is by following NFT influencers on Twitter and YouTube so that you can get an idea of what kind of projects the NFT community is talking about.
- Get started with this list of NFT influencers.
From there, you can branch off into your own niche (gaming, generative art, etc.) to find the gems.
But beware - not all influencers have your best interests in mind.
It’s hard to judge what accounts are running legitimate giveaways and which ones are just spam, so while it is more work Discord giveaways are a safer bet for your time and energy.
Just like on Twitter, projects will often reward their Discord community with NFT giveaways. Typically they are giving away NFTs from other projects as a means to show support between communities.
The main difference between Twitter and Discord giveaways is time and effort in finding them.
Staying on top of multiple Discords is a lot of work. They all operate on their own schedules and it’s easy to miss a community update.
If you are intent on this strategy try to be as organized as possible when it comes to monitoring your communities.
Another challenge to scoring a free NFT off a Discord giveaway is that sometimes they limit participants to people who are already holding one of the project's NFTs so you’d need to have bought in first to be eligible.
Whether you are browsing Twitter or have joined a community on Discord, you may notice that you need to get on a “whitelist” (WL) for a low cost or even free mint for certain NFT projects. Getting on these lists can take some time and effort, but for certain projects it may be worth it - always do your own research.Check out this article to learn more about whitelisting.
We hope that our guide to getting free NFTs has given you a better idea on where to look to get your collection started.
These free NFTs could start your journey to becoming a full-time NFT trader.