Guide to Bitcoin Ordinals Collections: What Are Taproot Wizards?

Guide to Bitcoin Ordinals Collections: What Are Taproot Wizards?

Guide to Bitcoin Ordinals Collections: What Are Taproot Wizards?

28 mar 2024

Uso general de la billetera

4 min

A number of Ordinals projects have challenged what many thought was previously possible on Bitcoin. This includes Taproot Wizards, one of the first big projects that set the stage for the Ordinals ecosystem’s growth.

Taproot Wizards pays homage to the Taproot upgrade and the Bitcoin ecosystem as a whole as one of the first generative art projects on Bitcoin Ordinals. 

In this article, we look at what Taproot Wizards are, their rich history, current developments, and how you can acquire a Taproot Wizard.

What Are Taproot Wizards?

Taproot Wizards is a collection of 2,121 unique wizard-themed Ordinal NFTs inscribed directly onto the Bitcoin blockchain. Currently, about 2,108 Wizards have been inscribed, but the project plans to eventually reach the mark of 2,121 (a nod to Bitcoin’s maximum supply of 21 million coins). 

All Taproot Wizards feature the hallmark wizard design with a robe, hat, and general facial features. However, these NFTs bear a selection of unique traits, which include:

  • Background: Wizards can have different colored backgrounds or even unique background elements.

  • Hat details: Hats may differ in color, stripes, or adornments.

  • Facial features: Some wizards might have beards, mustaches, or different expressions.

  • Rarities: Certain rare combinations of traits exist, making some wizards far less common than others.

History of Taproot Wizards

The Taproot Wizards story began over a decade ago (on 13 February 2013) with the iconic wizard meme posted on the r/Bitcoin subreddit by user 'mavensbot'. 

"Magic internet money" – well, at least that's what Bitcoin was called in its infancy. Mavensbot’s depiction of a wizard in a simple Microsoft Paint illustration distilled Bitcoin's promise into a shareable, lighthearted concept. 

Ten years later, Taproot Wizards was revealed on the same date in 2023. Wizard #0001 closely mirrored the beloved original meme with just a few minor tweaks.

Udi Wertheimer, a prominent developer and crypto advocate who was a member of r/Bitcoin when the original wizard was posted, was one of the project’s founders. He was inspired by how the 2013 wizard drawing brought new people to Bitcoin and wanted to replicate its original impact. Wertheimer saw the wizard as a symbol that could be leveraged to reinvigorate interest in Bitcoin, especially when Ethereum's NFT successes overshadowed Bitcoin’s momentum.

Therefore, Wertheimer, along with Eric Wall and FAR, created Taproot Wizards.

The Goal Behind Taproot Wizards

Transactions on the Bitcoin blockchain compete for limited block space, driving up fees. Dedicating such a huge portion to a single inscription dramatically highlighted the trade-off between data types. This shed even more light on Bitcoin’s age-old block space debate, with some community members supporting the Ordinals movement and some opposing it.

Taproot Wizards was created to highlight Bitcoin's potential use cases beyond peer-to-peer transfers. Udi Wertheimer intentionally inscribed a Taproot Wizard into the largest Bitcoin block ever (at the time), pushing the network's perceived boundaries. The single inscription occupied 3.96 MB of the block's 4 MB.

How to Acquire a Taproot Wizard

There isn't a clear-cut process for buying a Taproot Wizard. Instead, potential collectors must attend Wizard School. The Wizard School is a playful way to engage their community and create a sense of mystery around acquiring a Taproot Wizard NFT. 

The Wizard School involves joining Taproot Wizards' Discord, following their X account, and actively participating in community discussions.

Within the community, Taproot Wizards might drop hints, puzzles, or quests that, if completed, could lead to the opportunity to obtain a Taproot Wizard inscription. Part of the fun is the element of randomness or luck involved in ultimately being selected to receive a Wizard.

Future of Taproot Wizards

Taproot Wizards will likely have a trajectory similar to that of Crypto Punks on Ethereum due to their deep roots within the Bitcoin community's culture. However, the co-founders plan to use Taproot Wizards as the start of something bigger. In line with this vision, they raised a funding round of $7.5M to pursue more ambitious development goals and push the limits of the Bitcoin blockchain.

To continue their mission of innovating on Bitcoin, the Taproot Wizards team also launched Quantum Cats. Quantum Cats uses more complex concepts of Ordinal technology, specifically “evolving inscriptions,” which allow the NFT cats to transform their appearance over time. The collection was originally launched to raise awareness for an old Bitcoin opcode, OP_CAT, which had been abandoned in Bitcoin’s early years.

Needless to say, the Taproot Wizards project is still a prominent force in the Bitcoin community. It symbolizes the ecosystem’s desire to explore what more can be done on Bitcoin, and the barriers that need to be overcome to unlock Bitcoin’s potential. 

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