The Rise of NFTs: An Online Gambler’s Perspective

“CryptoKitties is the most important NFT project ever to exist because everything else was born from that.”

What do a DNA testing company and gambling have in common? Why, Carlini8, of course. Within a year of beginning his side hustle in 2014, expert online gambler, Carlini8 had to quit his job as a genetic tester because he was losing money going to work. When the pandemic hit, Spain and Portugal banned gambling, and online casinos in the UK stopped all promotions to avoid the same fate. Gambling began dying off. While online gambling is huge in the US, Carlini8 says, “I’m too deep into NFTs to go back to my old ways.”

Carlini8 first mined Bitcoin somewhere between 2013 and 2015, he can’t fully remember, but found it uninteresting. In 2017 he got into Ethereum. In December of that year, CryptoKitties started popping up, with a guy on Twitch literally shouting out the floor price of Kittens, and one selling for 100 ETH. He was soon breeding Kitties and fell for NFTs in a big way.

“CryptoKitties is the most important NFT project ever to exist because everything else was born from that.” Dapper Labs, a company spun-off from Axion Zen, and the developers of CryptoKitties, launched NBA Top Shop in 2020. “In my mind, that group of people created the two big NFT waves.”

In 2021, Carlini8 started NFTBoxes with @PranksyNFT. When they differed on how to expand the project, Carlini8 sold his half of the project to Pransky, who still runs it. Carlini8 co-founded Purrnelopes Country Club that same year.

The Purrnelope Country Club operates on the principle of creating a tight-knit community where every Cat holds a unique significance and is embraced with open arms and open minds. The club members work together, which is evident through the Ambassador program. Becoming a Cat holder grants the owner membership to this exclusive club and access to the perks outlined in the Purrnelopes’ roadmap.

“The experience with those people, those connections, those friendships in the beginning – I wanted to recreate that within a project.” Purrnelopes has attracted some of the biggest players in the industry, as well as many iconic celebrities.