Gamified Storytelling Project Axis Mundi Launches 72-Hour NFT Open Mint
The design studio UVL is more than just money, launching a unique “choose-your-adventure” styleproject this week.
Consisting of three key components, the journey to “Axis Mundi” starts on June 6, with a 72-hour open edition where users can acquire so-called Energy elements. An open edition refers to an unlimited number of NFTs in a collection.
Created by new media artist Jason Ting and sound designer Pelican Sound, these elements appear as 20-second video loops of light and fluid.
The coin price is set at 0.009 ETH, or about $16 at today’s prices.
The sale of Beings, the experience’s primary NFTs, is scheduled for September at an undisclosed price.
The Beings NFTs can also evolve, but users must burn their Energy NFTs to do so. To go from the first form to the second, for example, users must destroy five Energy NFTs.
Axis Mundi beings evolve through their respective histories. Image: Axis Mundi.
The final component is a much larger, collective work that generates art based on the various interactions between different beings in the virtual world as the experience ends.
The experience will unfold over the next 8 to 12 months, across eight chapters.
“The chapters are designed to maintain community interest post-coin,” co-founder Alexis Foucault told me Decrypt. “We have a well-structured, pre-planned experience where all collectors can participate.”
At the conclusion of each game chapter, NFT holders will be presented with decisions to make for a few days, with one-click decision mechanisms adapted to the brevity of the collector’s attention span. “However, the decisions you make will have a significant impact and will not necessarily be easy,” he said.
“The principles of play are embedded throughout the experience,” Foucault said Decrypt. “Collectors are encouraged to step outside their comfort zone and transition to active participants.”
Depending on the personality and psychology of the participant, different paths and experiences will begin to intertwine. “User decisions will shape their journey and the NFTs they own,” he said. Foucault draws a parallel to the interactive storytelling format popularized by Black Mirror’s “Bandersnatch”, where the viewers’ decisions determine the course of the narrative.
In a move to reinforce the launch, UVL is also curating an immersive audiovisual installation for this week’s Non-Fungible Conference in Lisbon.
Axis Mundi breaks up from NFT trends
“We aimed to create an emotional project based on NFTs that encapsulates everything we love,” Foucault told Decrypt.
Influenced by a myriad of artists and mediums – everything from Neri Oxman and Giacometti to Avatar and Pokémon – the duo build an NFT experience that bridges the gap between art, cinema and games.
This gamified mechanism also pays tribute to the NFT projects launched by the artist Pak, which Foucault acknowledges. “We often refer to Pak, and it’s completely on purpose. Lost Poets, for example, has a principle of gamification and mystery that has always inspired us.”
He also cites influences from other collections such as OG Crystals, Shibuya Studio and the GNSS collection of artist MGXS.
The NFTs are created through a 3D algorithmic generation process, using AI software Stable Diffusion. The result is a work of art with a sculptural rather than graphic quality.
“We sculpted the silhouette as if we were casting a digital sculpture with biological and organic materials,” said Foucault.
While there may be money to be made from the project – it is, after all, an open release – it is certainly not the niche’s typical NFT release.
And that’s the point.
“We wanted to create a collection with a completely new aesthetic, breaking away from trends and presenting a refreshing and exciting universe, both aesthetically and narratively,” he said.