The Five Biggest NFT Projects That Never Happened

The Five Biggest NFT Projects That Never Happened

The road to NFT glory is paved with might-have-beens; heavily hyped projects that failed to deliver. These aborted endeavours left us with more questions than answers.

Realms of Ruin

Realms of Ruin looked set to revolutionize Web3 storytelling. It brought together famous young adult authors to create an “epic fantasy world” backed by NFTs. Readers would have used their tokens to expand the world, develop stories, mint characters and more in the literary equivalent of a blockchain game. The usual criticisms about NFTs quickly forced the writers to walk away, though... only five hours after the project was announced!



Anybody of a certain age will recall the video game classic ‘Worms.’ MetaWorms was supposed to be a generative art project linked to the game, created by Worms developer Team17. Unfortunately, the inclusion of NFTs enraged other developers who threatened en masse never to work with Team17 again unless the project was scrapped. Seeing a retro game reinvented on the blockchain would have been interesting, and the generative aspect might have inspired future NFT games.


"Non Fungible Animals" was supposed to fund conservation work protecting endangered species, but the WWF faced massive backlash due to crypto’s perceived environmental impact. Even though the tokens were to be minted on greener Polygon (this was the pre-Merge era), the WWF was forced to cancel everything. A shame, as this collection would have shown how NFTs can make a positive impact on the world.



CypherCity promised a complete Metaverse populated with “homes, cars, pets and more,” not to mention a fully mapped out “Cypher City” with unique districts. “Cypher” NFTs were selling well and brought in 270 ETH before the team decided that “we have not done enough” and that the time had come to “wind down the project.” Full refunds were issued, but the loss of CypherCity still hurts.


‘The Vault’ was supposed to be CNN's big pivot into Web3, offering collectors the chance to mint defining news pieces. The media giant described it as being about community and artistic representations of modern news. That didn’t stop them from axing it with a simple message: “we will no longer be developing or maintaining this community.” The measly 20% refund and CNN’s half-hearted excuse that ‘The Vault’ was only ever an “experiment” did nothing to dampen accusations of rug pulling.

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