If you found the meteoric rise of Bitcoin to be weird and wonderful – wait until you see just how strange cryptocurrencies can get.
Nowadays we find blockchain-based tokens for just about everything. There are playful surprises to behold within decentralized networks, littered about among a graveyard of already-dead cryptocurrencies who just couldn’t hack it. Somehow, these bizarre alternative coins are still kicking, still trying and still entertaining.Few could ever hope to reach the lofty heights of Bitcoin, Ripple, Ethereum or Litecoin – cryptocurrencies which have gained deserved attention for unique value and tangibility. Smart, silly and just plain stupid – it takes all sorts.At the time of writing, there are 1384 different cryptocurrencies listed with Cryptocurrency Market Capitalizations. Bitcoin, Ripple, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash and Cardano make up the current top 5, but the further down you go, the weirder the alt-coins get.Let’s take a trip down the rabbit hole, shall we?
This meme-turned-cryptocurrency gained popularity in 2013. It features the face of the famed Shiba Inu dog with comic sans text in the background.Created by group product manager at Adobe, Jackson Palmer, Dogecoin pays homage to the meme and originally started out as joke currency. In an interview with Motherboard, Palmer said:“One night after work, I sat down with a beer, I had too much time on my hands, and I bought Dogecoin.com."Soon after, Billy Markus, a software engineer at IBM, came aboard and helped turn it into an actual currency. And an actual currency it is fast becoming, currently sitting as high as 35th place with a market cap of $1,196,086,973.Much coin. Very profit. Too currency.
Technically, Coinye doesn’t exist anymore, but is so whimsical that we just couldn’t leave it off the list. The founders of Coinye hitched its name and logo to the wagon of superstar hip-hop maestro Kanye West, and soon regretted it.A bizarre change of logo and the dropping of the ‘West’ did little to earn Yeezy’s approval. Can’t imagine why not.Shortly after the parody currency was announced, West’s lawyers absolutely destroyed it in a trademark infringement lawsuit. A mere six months after launching in 2014, the project was abandoned.
PutinCoin and PutinClassic
According to the website, verbatim:Why PutinCoin created?
“To pay tribute to the people and the president of one of the largest and greatest country in the world: Russia!"
Currently ranked at 485th, PutinCoin holds a market cap of $9,263,365.Donald Trump’s got TrumpCoin named after him, so it seems only fair that Vladimir Putin have his own as well. In fact, Putin not only has the PutinCoin but also Putin Classic – the world’s first souvenir coin.You can read all about the endless virtues of the great and glorious Putin Classic in a chat with BitCoinTalk.
"In his house at R'lyeh, dead Cthulhu waits dreaming..."
– H.P Lovecraft, The Call of Cthulhu.
At the bottom of the Pacific Ocean you’ll find that dreaded cosmic entity, the Great Old One, Cthulhu. And languishing, or perhaps just biding its time, down in 888th place of the CMC you’ll find one of the oddest digital currencies yet – Cthulhu Offerings.It appears to be an entire religion based around Lovecraftian lore, in which the coins form part of a ritual sacrifice.
“As the equinox approaches we begin the ritual; four weeks and five days long it builds until Cthulhu awakens and one worshipper is rewarded greatly…During the last five days, the 'Tharanak shagg,' or "promise of dreamland," the ritual reaches final pitch and the daily special blocks are highly increased. Finally Cthulhu will return after the xxx665th offering has paid tribute to the Great Old One and he will bestow a bounty deserving of Him upon one lucky worshiper.”
PotCoin, like Fontana Chicken, was designed specifically for the cannabis community. It provides a decentralized banking infrastructure for the legal cannabis industry. Blockchain has offered the industry a number of creative solutions, which you can read about here, in an interesting article by PCMag.Naturally, there are a number of dagga-focused alt-currencies. These include HempCoin, KushCoin, GanjaCoin, CannabisCoin, etc. PotCoin stands out for, inexplicably, sponsoring Dennis Rodman’s trip to North Korea. Rodman was on what is said to be a humanitarian mission. But, well, who knows. It’s Dennis Rodman.
The Strangest Cryptocurrencies - Honourable (?) Mentions
With such an endless well of weird and wonderful to choose from, it's nearly impossible to compile such a list without mentioning as many as we can. The sheer spectrum is almost frightening. You could find any currency to suit your tastes or values.From adult entertainment industry related alt-coins, specifically suited to purchase adult products and services, such as SpankChain or SexCoin to the downright silly DentaCoin - for dentists only - the choices are endless.We found a FedoraCoin - that's right, internet, the fedora is coming back - and a UFO coin.Firstblood offers gaming tournaments online, with rewards up for grabs, as well as glowing admiration from your peers.Useless Ethereum Token claims to be the world's first truly honest crypto, with a pitch like:
"You're going to give some random person on the internet money, and they're going to take it and go buy stuff with it. Probably electronics, to be honest. Maybe even a big-screen television. Seriously, don't buy these tokens."
And yes, people have actually bought some of them.Dig a little deeper and things grow curiouser and curiouser. InsaneCoin starts us off down a dark path to EvilCoin - it's sole purpose being to embrace and inspire evil. Ambitious.By the time you get to the lunacy of Unobtainium... Well, maybe you've gone a little too far.What a time to be alive.