The 2021–22 bull market saw an incredible proliferation of chains; most of them VC funded moonshots with ambitious narratives and vast war chests to lure projects to their corner of the internet.
Building BattleFly on Arbitrum in early 2022 was not a popular choice. It didn’t have the deep pockets of other chains, and the “ETH killer” narrative adopted by other chains captured more frothy imagination on crypto-twitter than the “ETH Maximizer” Arbitrum aspired to be. When we launched our collection, we spent hundreds of hours in our Discord educating people on how to bridge to Arbitrum, and for thousands of people, BattleFly was their first experience with an L2.
Problems were solved at speed, together, by a small group of projects that understood the potential. While it only took 15 minutes to get liquidity from Layer 1 to Arbitrum, there was a seven day waiting period on the return trip. Projects like Hop Exchange reduced this to seconds, dramatically increasing the confidence of users.
In April 2022, we met the Arbitrum team in-person and were impressed by their clear-eyed perspective on L2s, technology ambitions and above all, their humility. Everything about the team said they were playing the long game, and were backed by patient capital that understood the long-term vision. The Arbitrum team were vocal in their support of TreasureDAO, a symbiotic relationship that has driven user acquisition and activity for both DAOs.
Later that year, we held our breath as the Nitro upgrade was launched, and when it went off without a hitch, it was undeniable that Arbitrum was starting to operate from a point of advantage. Quality defi projects started to emerge around us, and new games like The Beacon and Kururo Beasts electing to jump chains and build on Arbitrum and TreasureDAO gave us confidence despite a grim bear market.
Arbitrum’s understated and technology-led approach to growing their chain has attracted quality builders with a shared sense of purpose that web3 can be a force for good in the world. They’ve grown the chain to a point where the activity is already exceeding main-net, and done this without splashing large amounts of cash around to drive in-organic growth. The fact that Arbitrum was one of only a handful of chains to actually grow TVL, wallets and activity during the bear market without a giant ecosystem fund is bullish to say the least.
Airdrop hunters probably don’t really care about which chains ultimately win the proliferation battle and ultimately consolidate enough liquidity, quality projects and technology advantage to underpin the next ten years of building. That’s fair enough, but we’d encourage you to take the time to understand why Arbitrum is well on track to be the backbone of the commercial internet in the next decade.
BattleFly is proud to build on Arbitrum, and can’t wait to see the next 10x of builders and projects join us — just as the main course, finally, is about to be served.
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