Rookie Crypto Mistakes: Painful Lessons from the MetaBlaze Presale Investment

25 Jun 2024

Editor’s note: This story represents the views of the author of the story. The author is not affiliated with HackerNoon staff and wrote this story on their own. The HackerNoon editorial team has only verified the story for grammatical accuracy and does not condone/condemn any of the claims contained herein. #DYOR

Editor’s note (2): Soon after publication of this story, a senior member of the Metablaze team reached out to HackerNoon raising concerns with the author’s claims, specifically, the claim that Metablaze re-routed the entire $1.6 million for liquidity towards development costs and that the MetaGoblings and MetaRoyals were worthless. According to MetaBlaze, the author’s accusations are unfounded and inaccurate. The HackerNoon team has asked MetaBlaze for an official statement, but did not receive one at the time of publication. HackerNoon will update this space once it receives an official statement from MetaBlaze. #DYOR

The Siren's Call of Big Crypto Profits

It was early 2022 and the crypto mania was in full swing. Stories of kids getting insanely rich from bizarre digital assets called NFTs and meme coins were inescapable. As a rookie, I got caught up in the gold rush fever, blinded by visions of bounties from this weird new digital world. I started hunting for the next big crypto score that could make me rich.

That's when the MetaBlaze ads slithered into my feed. Their marketing pushed all the right buttons - an immersive World of Warcraft style metaverse filled with orcs, elves, dwarfs, and gnomes, brought to life through the MetaGoblins, and their exclusive MetaRoyals NFT collections. They boasted cutting-edge blockchain tech, and a founder's tale of overcoming past crypto scams to launch an ambitious, transparent Play-to-Earn platform.

It all seemed too good to be true: a $4 million presale fundraising campaign gaining momentum even during the bear market, a fully transparent team with a Certik Gold Badge KYC and audit, a large supportive community, and even the founders' friends and family deeply invested. In the NFT.NYC event in 2023, the team sponsored the event and hosted an escape room gaming experience featuring the MetaBlaze concept, seen by hundreds of visitors who were welcomed by the founding team themselves. By this point, I was already all in.

When you throw an epic NFT.NYC convention event on the liquidity pool's tab!

The Sobering Reality: Over $XX,XXX...Poof!

Fast forward a year later, and my MetaBlaze investment has gone to crypto ashes. Over $4 million raised from investors worldwide inexplicably vaporized before anything was even launched. Not only was there nothing left for the ballyhooed liquidity pool. The entire $1.6 million liquidity supposedly locked for the launch on a decentralized exchange had been re-routed to black hole development costs. My portfolio today shows billions of worthless MetaGoblings and MetaRoyals alongside a thick folder of unkept promises and heartache.

Whether due to rank mismanagement or more nefarious motives, my painful experience with MetaBlaze's spectacular implosion has bestowed some tough but incredibly valuable lessons about investing in this volatile blockchain space. Hindsight is 20/20, but foresight is precious:

Lesson 1: Don't Invest Too Early - Patience Pays

No matter how sexy the pitch is, avoid falling for ground-floor investment opportunities without any tangible progress or users. This is hard in crypto where hype incentivizes putting money behind vapor ideas and promises. But have restraint - wait for at least a minimum viable product with real utility and evidence of an imminent launch before risking capital. Investing in the days before the actual liftoff gives you drastically better odds.

Lesson 2: Lean on Launchpads' Proven Processes

For inexperienced crypto investors, the additional scrutiny and vetting of leading launchpads is invaluable. Their curated project pools represent opportunities thoroughly vetted by professionals adept at separating sophisticated startups from potential failures. Seek the guiding hand and protections of a reputable launchpad.

Lesson 3: DYOR Isn't Optional - It's An Investing Imperative

No amount of marketing glitz, founder clout, or promised upside can substitute for a team's ability to ship and sustain an actual working product. Badges like being "doxxed" and passing security audits are nice checks in the plus column, but in no way guarantee viability. Do your exhaustive research. Check every team member's experience, and judge for yourself qualifications for the job. Don’t trust what they tell you. Trust what you know.

The School of Hard Knocks Appreciates Your Tuition

There were many important lessons from mine and also others failed presale investment experiences. But in this article, I wanted to focus on the ones that are less talked about.

There's no sugar-coating how much my expensive tuition at the School of Hard Crypto Knocks has stung. But the lessons have been invaluable in shaping how I now approach the space.

Moving forward, I'll be sticking to the fundamentals - investing with patience, doing exhaustive research, and never again chasing feverish crypto get-rich-quick fantasies based on hype and hollow promises. There's still substantial money to be made in this volatile arena, but it will come through methodical investing, not falling for obvious rookie pitfalls.

I hope sharing the painful details of my humbling experience can help others identify and sidestep similar hazards as they navigate the boundless opportunities, and risks of the blockchain frontier. Thanks to MetaBlaze and MetaGoblings everywhere, my education has been paid for. Now class is in session!