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This year hasn’t been the more bullish for the cryptocurrency market. However, numerous new altcoins have been appearing, offering interesting features. Beyond Bitcoin, we can also discover the advantages of the most trending altcoins this 2022. From games to more technical functions, all of them seem to be in their time to shine.

Of course, some very popular altcoins may come to mind here: Ethereum, Polygon, Cardano, Solana, Tron, and even Dogecoin and Shiba Inu. But here we will talk about coins with less than a year in the market. In other words, some really new promises are ahead. Let’s take a glimpse of what the future for crypto may be like.  

STEPN (GMT)

The Metaverse is gaining momentum, and it brings innovative ways to earn some money. Solana-based STEPN and its native token, GMT, belong to the category Move-to-Earn (M2E). As the name suggests, they’re systems that reward their users for moving around; from walking and jogging to dancing and any other physical activity.

Released in December 2021 by Jerry Huang and Yawn Rong, STEPN also had a public sale back in March 2022. Year-to-date (YTD), the GMT price has increased by 670% (with peaks surpassing 24,500%) and it’s still among the most trending altcoins [CoinMarketCap]. Speculating with GMT in trading is possible, but to use the STEPN platform as an M2E, it’s necessary to acquire a pair of NFT sneakers.

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Some NFT Sneakers by STEPN. Source: OpenSea

Then, the app will use the virtual sneakers to track (and monetize) every movement from the user. These NFTs come with different designs, quality, and prices. They can be rented, too. Since the app is so popular now, one of the cheaper ones is costing about 10 SOL ($1,100).

Currently, STEPN has a total market capitalization of over $586.8 million and a cost of $1 per token. Some predictions for 2030 are aiming for $13-$16 per GMT.

Optimism (OP)

Among trending altcoins, Optimism is probably the equivalent to the Lightning Network on Bitcoin. Released in December 2021, it’s what’s known as “second layer” or “layer 2”: a secondary chain connected to the mainnet to speed it up —in this case, Ethereum. By using a system dubbed Optimism Rollups, what this platform does is imitate the Ethereum features for all intents and purposes, but “rolling up” numerous transactions to register (and pay) them as one.

That way, the Ethereum-based operations and Dapps (including payments, NFTs, and smart contracts of several types) can run with higher speeds and cheaper fees outside the mainnet.  Only the post-transaction data is managed on the main chain, securing the network.

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Optimism logo and Collective. Source: official Twitter account

Last May 31, OP Labs, the team behind Optimism, started to distribute their governance token OP for free (in airdrops). Since then, OP has increased by over 44%, and it’s currently at $1.3 per token. In addition, Optimism is now supporting 63 DeFi protocols, and it has $1.04 billion in Total Value Locked (TVL).

Users of Aave, Synthetix, Uniswap, Curve, Lyra, and more can choose this chain on their wallets to enjoy higher speeds and lower fees for Ethereum Dapps [DeFi Llama]. The total OP market cap surpasses $315 million [CMC]. Price predictions for OP are between $2.5 and $9.1 for 2025, according to several experts.

ApeCoin (APE)

This currency was released in March 2022 to lay the foundations of the ecosystem that Yuga Labs is building. That ecosystem includes the NFT collections related to the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) and their own Metaverse, Otherside. Besides, it’s worth mentioning that Yuga Labs also bought the popular NFT collections CryptoPunks and Meebits from Larva Labs in March.

Those NFTs will likely be participating too in Otherside. As they described:

“Otherside is a gamified, interoperable metaverse currently under development. The game blends mechanics from massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs) and web3-enabled virtual worlds. Think of it as a metaRPG where the players own the world, your NFTs can become playable characters, and thousands can play together in real time.”

Behind all of this is ApeCoin, working as a utility and governance token. Indeed, 55,000 virtual lands (Otherdeeds) are available for purchase at 305 APEs each. Other 30,000 lands have been distributed for Bored Apes and Mutant Apes holders. Currently, APE has a price of $6.1 per token and a market cap of over $1.8 billion [CMC].

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Otherside glimpse by Yuga Labs

The token has decreased by 25% since its release. However, it quickly climbed +225% until its All-Time-High (ATH) in April. If Otherside is further developed, ApeCoin could recover or surpass that ATH. Some predictions are aiming for $75-$430 for 2025, and this is still one of the most trending altcoins in 2022.

IguVerse (IGU)

It looks just like an NFT collection about iguanas, but there’s more. IguVerse is a new game in development, founded by the entrepreneurs and crypto enthusiasts Andriy Tkachiv and Alex Kalinkov. Their private sale just raised around $1.87 million. If you love animals and/or have a pet, this may be your favorite app.

Besides the Genesis Collection (about iguanas, indeed), IguVerse will allow users to create customized NFTs using photos of their own pets or Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to generate a dream animal in crazy sceneries.

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Example of an AI-generated NFT on IguVerse.

Those NFTs will work to really participate in the app in three ways: Socialize-to-Earn (share on social media), Move-to-Earn (walk your pet), and Play-to-Earn (feed your pet). In addition, the team could assign unique tasks to earn, or you can participate in Help-to-Earn (doing real-life activities in favor of animals). The rewards will come in the token IGUP, while IGU will be the governance token.

The game and tokens are still pending release. An open public beta is planned for September, as well as the arrival of IGU tokens at PancakeSwap. Further listings in other cryptocurrency exchanges are also in progress. At least, the NFTs of the Genesis Collection are available on OpenSea, with a floor price of 0.09 ETH (around $165). Owning one of these NFTs could grant you an allocation of IGU tokens.

Ultiverse (MXS)

Yuga Labs isn’t the only company preparing its own Metaverse. Ultiverse is another Metaverse project backed by titans, including Binance Labs, DeFiance, SkyVision, and Sequoia Capital. It’s described as a “Metaverse that connects Web3 with the future of immersive social gaming”.

Ultiverse (MXS) is quickly becoming one of the most trending altcoins. Beyond the Play-To-Earn (P2E) model, probably its main characteristic is the graphics. The team is working with the system Unreal Engine 5, used even in next-generation consoles like PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S. The first glimpses of this future game hub are almost breathtaking.

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Glimpse of Ultiverse City from its official website

That’s no wonder, considering that they already have a $50 million valuation after their seed round. The games inside Ultiverse will be compatible with VR/AR devices, and it’ll allow to mint 2D and 3D NFTs without coding. They’re even offering internal decentralized markets for these assets. Game Guilds, a Council to vote on new proposals, an Arena for tournaments, a Construction Bureau to build and buy properties, and an internal DEX will also be available.

Currently, Ultiverse has an NFT collection on OpenSea: “Electric Sheep”. It has floor prices of 0.6 ETH (around $1,100) and depicts dark fantasy characters. They also have a pending Initial DEX Offering (IDO) this year for their native token, MXS.


Most trending altcoins: some risks

As amazing as some novel projects may seem, we always should remember that all new systems imply a certain level of risk. It’s always important to do your own research (DYOR) before investing, and we have some tips about it.

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  • Never believe just in promises. The first step is to type the name (of the platform, coin, service, company, etc.) on Google and social media.
  • Check out their website in detail. Missing links, lack of terms and conditions, generic design, bad grammar, private wallets, and anonymous teams are clear red flags in any project.
  • Bad documentation is another fishy sign. A good project has a good whitepaper and clear goals.
  • Look for previous reviews by average users on several sites. The ads and sponsored articles are never reliable. If a project is being overpromoted, that could also be a bad sign.
  • If something looks too good to be true, probably it’s not true.

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Author

I'm a literature professional in the crypto world since 2016. It doesn't sound very compatible, but I've been learning and teaching about blockchain and cryptos for international portals since then. After hundreds of articles and diverse content about the topic, now you can find me here on Alfacash, working for more decentralization.

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