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The airdrops of ZKsync and LayerZero are behind us: which other crypto projects to farm?

The two most anticipated crypto airdrops of the year, namely those of the layer-2 ZKsync and the interoperability protocol LayerZero, have finally come to an end.

In the last week, the ZK and ZRO coins have been distributed to the respective early adopters of the two projects, with a listing on the largest cryptocurrency exchanges.

Throughout all this, there has been no shortage of criticism and disputes regarding these two airdrops, which have offered smaller rewards than the expectations of the farmers, inevitably leading to a decline in the hype for this niche sector.

What are now the best airdrops to farm and how will the landscape of token incentives to crypto communities evolve?

Let’s see all the details below.

Completed the distributions of ZKsync and LayerZero with many criticisms from the community: enthusiasm for crypto airdrops drops

After more than two years of waiting by crypto farmers, the well-known Ethereum layer-2 ZKsync and the famous omnichain interoperability protocol Layerzero have released their respective airdrops with the launch of the ZK and ZRO tokens.

The completion of these distributions marks the end of a very important era for the cryptocurrency airdrop sector, where we witnessed a strong increase in participation between the end of 2023 and the beginning of 2024. 

This obviously does not mean that there will no longer be airdrops to farm (there will probably be more and more), but that the way they will be managed by the various projects will change significantly and simultaneously also the way they will be perceived by users.

In fact, the launches of the respective tokens of ZKsync and LayerZero have been among the most criticized ever, with both parties implementing a selection of eligibility criteria that is very complex with allocations sometimes not in line with the expectations of the community.

Given the high number of active users who participated in the two airdrops, namely 7 million addresses on ZKsync and 5 million addresses on LayerZero, we could have expected it: with such a crowd, it was almost inevitable that someone would be disappointed by the final result.

In any case a sentiment of discouragement is perceived among many airdrop hunters who for months have spent hundreds/thousands of dollars in fees to obtain insignificant token allocations.

Despite this, it should still be noted that both ZKsync and LayerZero have put a large sum of money in crypto into the pockets of the communities.

  • ZKsync: 3.68 billion ZK (17.5% total supply) to 695,232 addresses for a total value of 1.08 billion dollars according to listing prices;
  • LayerZero: 85 million ZRO (8.5% total supply) to 1.28 million eligible addresses for a total value of 382 million dollars according to listing prices.

The problem with these airdrops is that, as mentioned, the excessive enthusiasm  given by investments and multi-billion dollar valuations has led to a condition of โ€œoverfarmingโ€, making it impossible for the projects themselves to execute an honest distribution that manages to reward users, partners, VC and team for their contribution at the same time.

Since the crypto world is an environment that self-regulates based on the internal market dynamics, it is possible that in the coming months there will be much less crowd for emerging airdrops and therefore there will be many more opportunities.

Simplifying, we can say that this self-regulating mechanism is similar to that of Bitcoin mining, where the participation of miners is greater where there are conditions for a good profit (typically BTC price) while it decreases when these conditions cease to exist (low BTC price, high hashrate, and block reward halving).

According to this reasoning, the airdrop meta is far from over: it’s just a matter of waiting for the right moment and choosing the protocol that is relatively less farmed in proportion to the potential reward to be claimed.

Which airdrops to farm from now on?

If the airdrop meta is not really over, what are the next projects to farm and on which to aim to achieve a higher crypto allocation compared to the disappointing results recorded by ZKsync and LayerZero?

First of all, on the horizon we still have the airdrops of Scroll and Linea, both layer-2 of Ethereum that have launched a points campaign (Scroll Sessions and Linea Surge) and are therefore the next most anticipated from now until the end of the year.

In this case the hype is not exaggerated and the projects do not seem to be โ€œoverfarmatiโ€ therefore we can expect a decent reward.

In the world of finance, the terms “bull” and “bear” are often used to describe market trends. A “bull” market is characterized by rising prices, while a “bear” market is marked by falling prices. Understanding these concepts is crucial for investors.

Recently, two very interesting projects have been launched: Symbiotic and Sophon.

The first is a restaking protocol that aims to compete with Eigenlayer, while the second is a hyperchain built on top of ZKsync: both have solid backers behind them and very interesting underlying technology

To participate and be eligible for these airdrops, it is sufficient to stake on their official websites and wait for the launch of the respective governance tokens to be announced. The amount of the reward will obviously depend on the value of the stake and the time it has been locked.

Other upcoming airdrops that could bring satisfaction to farmers are: EigenLayer -Phase 2, Swell, Zora, Ethena, Hyperlane, Debridge, Layer3, Berachain, Koi Finance.

Let’s not forget to be present when the Monad and Sonic projects are launched on the mainnet, with timelines indicating Q3 and Q4 of 2024. In particular, Monad could be the largest airdrop on this entire list, in terms of value that will be released to early adopters.

What will be really important, however, is not just WHAT TO FARM, but rather HOW TO FARM an airdrop and obtain the highest possible allocation in crypto.

LayerZero and ZKsync have been a clear example that it is not always necessary to process hundreds of transactions and move volumes in the millions to receive great rewards, but what matters most is to behave like real users.

Often use (not excessively) the most interesting products you find on-chain, do various swaps, act as LP, trade NFTs but without clogging a chain or a protocol with tx without value. 

Finally, be careful not to farm with too many wallets (especially if with a very low balance) and not to fall into the anti-sybil traps, under penalty of exclusion for the next airdrops.

Alessandro Adami
Alessandro Adami
Graduated in "Information, Media and Advertising", for over 4 years interested in the cryptocurrency and blockchain space. Co-Founder of Tokenparty, community active in spreading crypto-enthusiasm. Co-founder of Legal Hackers Civitanova marche. Information technology consultant. Ethereum Fan Boy and supporter of Chainlink oracles, strongly believes that smart contracts will be central in the development of society.
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