Creating an non-fungible token (NFT) project on a flexible blockchain like Solana shouldn’t be hard. Yes, there is some programming involved, but with the amount of free open-source tools being built, coupled with the vibrant and helpful community within Metaplex, you could literally start your NFT journey today and launch something in less than two weeks.
Make no mistake, running an NFT project is no walk in the park, but the ratio of potential earnings to difficulty is incredibly higher than most projects you can build these days. Many creators have walked away with millions of dollars; some of which disappeared while others stayed to give back.
What you do at this point is up to you. We just want to give the best Metaplex guide for beginners.
What is Metaplex?
Metaplex is a NFT protocol that serves as THE standard for Solana NFTs, enabling artists and creators to easily launch their projects. The platform significantly reduces the complex processes involved in creating and minting NFTs in order to cater to both developers and non-techie creators.
You can create generative collections, 1-of-1 pieces, airdrop NFTs, and a whole lot more.
Apart from the basics, Metaplex also allows you to turn your creations into in-game assets, infuse them with real-world utilities, create a dedicated marketplace, establish a community, and protect NFT sales from bots 一 all in one place.
The protocol currently serves thousands of web3 creators who leverage its suite of convenient tools, armed with a large community of developers that are willing to give aid. Moreover, it gives you control over your preferred royalty scheme or creator splits, allowing more leeway on the profits side of NFT launching.
Whether you’re a newbie NFT creator, a seasoned one, or somewhere in the middle, all these features will likely serve you well as you build on Solana. By addressing the pain points of newbie creators, Metaplex allows you to focus your energy on your craft and community instead of getting caught up with coding.
But to set expectations straight, Metaplex is not a perfect platform. You’ll probably still encounter some technical aspects in creating NFTs, which are impossible to eliminate completely. That’s generally the price of innovation. But rest assured that all these steps were re-designed to reduce complexities for newbie creators and help them build digital assets in the easiest way possible.
Do You Need to Be a Developer to Use Metaplex?
No, but it would certainy be an advantage. But creators looking to build an NFT project with little to no coding experience can definitely use Metaplex with no real issues.
In fact, all the features mentioned a while ago involve almost zero coding and can be set up right away. But for some aspects that need coding, which some may find intimidating, you can simply seek help from Metaplex’s large community. Furthermore, you may also join coding-oriented Discord channels as extended spaces to find help.
Don’t let the technical hurdles stop you from creating a collection with Metaplex as you might waste all the opportunities and advanced tools that are currently provided for free.
“Help will always be given at (Metaplex) to those who ask for it.”Dumbledore
Concepts You Need to Understand
While we did say that there will be little programming involved, there are concepts that you need to internalize first before moving forward, as you’ll most likely encounter them later on.
Solana CLI Tools
CLI stands for “command line interface”, which is basically an interface, except its commands can be activated by typing them instead of pressing buttons. To better understand what it is, we can compare a CLI to the typical graphical user interface (GUI) we are used to in modern computer systems.
While a GUI lets users interact with systems via graphical elements like icons, menus, and windows to click on, CLI does so by requiring users to enter text-based commands.
Solana also has its own set of CLI tools that Metaplex users can tap. It isn’t the easiest tool to use within Metaplex, but it is the most secure, direct, and flexible way to manage your Solana NFT.
Anchor Framework is a platform for creating secure Solana decentralized applications (dApps) and generates security checks for developers.
SPL stands for “Solana Program Library” and serves as the token standard for the Solana blockchain. SPL tokens are the counterpart of the Ethereum-based ERC-20 tokens.
Rust is the main programming language used by most Solana-based dApps. It is known for its performance, safety, stability, and memory-efficient functionalities, making it an ideal tool for many developers.
Candy Machine V3
Candy Machine is an NFT program created by Metaplex, which also powers almost all Solana NFT collections. Through this platform, users can mint 1-of-1 NFTs, generative collections, and even semi-fungible tokens.
Candy Machine’s V1 and V2 have been a home-run success for Metaplex, leading it to develop and roll out the much-awaited ‘V3’.
But before diving into V3, let’s first have a short recap of V2’s well-loved features:
- Dedicated protection from bot attacks
- Improved distribution options for NFTs,
- Flexible configurations for whitelists, and
- Larger collection support.
Together with these capabilities, Candy Machine V3 rolls out new features to bring more flexibility and edge for our passionate NFT project creators in the space.
On this new version, creators will now be able to use two separate contracts for their projects, one for managing the minting logic, and the other one for handling the project’s access controls.
The idea behind the separation is to allow builders execute necessary tweaks on the access control contract, called ‘Candy Guard’, without negatively affecting the minting logic.
As for the Candy Guard, it has been equipped with stand-alone modules, making it malleable for various NFT use cases. It also allows creators to add custom access controls and other features they see fit for their specific projects.
- Also check out our full guide on Solana
No-Code Metaplex Community Tools
For users who want to start an NFT project without coding, there are notable independent platforms created by Metaplex community members to make your journey a lot simpler. Let’s explore three of them.
Treat Toolbox is a simple tool for creating a generative NFT collection, which can easily churn out 1,000, 5,000, or even 10,000-piece digital assets. Simply upload your artwork, set its attributes and rarity, and get ready to generate an NFT army!
It also gives you full control of your collection’s supply, symbols, metadata, and royalties, making your NFT creation experience as flexible as possible. Moreover, it also wins in user-friendliness as it has a straightforward user interface (UI) and doesn’t require blockchain expertise just to use the platform’s features.
As a quick trivia, Treat Toolbox was first used solely for the Skeletal Crew’s launch and not as a paid service. But the tool has performed so well that it was applied to the majority of succeeding launches on the Solana ecosystem.
Holaplex is a no-code NFT creation platform that allows the creative community to conveniently create NFTs using free and simple tools. From limited editions, to open editions, and master editions, you have the freedom to choose what type of collection you want to launch without going through the technical stuff.
The platform also aids you in creating marketplaces that can expand your venture and reach. Moreover, since it is still built on Metaplex’s NFT standard, you can directly benefit from everything that Solana can offer, including scalability, affordability, and security.
NFT Armory is a tool for viewing, updating, and minting Metaplex digital assets on the Solana blockchain. The tool is ideal for developers who may want to make a short sweep and do some debugging and short experimentations on their NFT collections.
Top Projects That Used Metaplex
- DeGods (community/pfp collection)
- Okay Bears (community/pfp collection)
- Genopets (gaming)
- Belugies (art/collectible)
So What? You IN or OUT?
If you’ve been convinced to start your own NFT collection on Metaplex after reading this post, then we’ve done a good job. You may visit the Metaplex website and start reading stuff. Then you can follow the more indepth step-by-step guide. For those who prefer video, HashLips might be more suitable.
Don’t forget to join Metaplex’s discord and say hi to the community. You’ll need all the help you can get.
Lastly, since you’re about to launch an NFT project, we want you to be part of our community too. Metaroids aims to build the greatest network of web3 pioneers so we can dominate the next stage of the Internet together.
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