In the latest development of the NFT techno-financial trash fire none of us are allowed to look away from, Hypebeast (opens in new tab) reports that an NFT yacht just sold for $650,000. More precisely, the "Metaflower Super Mega Yacht" (opens in new tab) went for 149 "WETH" or "Wrapped Ethereum." Its utility over regular Ethereum eludes me, but crypto people love having multiple barriers of transfers, digital wallets, and withdrawals between the money of the future and money you can use to pay your rent.
The Metaflower Super Mega Yacht's lucky (and anonymous) owner will be able to enjoy its completely digital DJ booth, helicopter landing pad, and single hot tub in "The Fantasy Islands," a self-described "luxury real estate development project of 100 NFT private islands (comprised of NFT land in the Sandbox + architecturally unique 3D NFT villas) on the Ethereum blockchain."
Are you still with me? You're going to wish you weren't. This unimpressive 3D model and attending luxury resort will live in "the Sandbox (opens in new tab)", a blockchain-based, self-described "metaverse." Its low-fi aesthetic and emphasis on user-generated content are strongly reminiscent of Roblox, as is its cosmetics-centric monetization, but on a vastly different scale. This is NFTs and the blockchain, so instead of little 12-year-olds sneaking their parents' credit cards so they can look like Thanos, it's adults with fully developed brains dropping $16,585 for the "Female Teacher (opens in new tab)" player model, which isn't even one of a kind. Have I mentioned that the Sandbox is still in a closed alpha?
If nothing else, all of this makes me feel better about buying League of Legends' Dunkmaster Darius (opens in new tab) skin for fifteen bucks back in 2014. Maybe if the Dunkmaster was on the blockchain, I wouldn't have lost him and my other skins when Riot updated their account system in early 2020. (I do not mourn their loss.) If all goes well, hopefully this stuff will all go down like the Hindenburg without taking the global financial system with it.