Azuki founder admits to rugging three projects in a year

Zagabond took to Twitter last night to share his story. Instead, he spooked the community with an account of three rugged NFT projects.

The founder of Azuki, a wildly popular anime-inspired NFT collection, published a blog post last night to tell the story of three projects he has been involved in last year. The post appears to have been written as a “morale boost” for the Azuki community, but it had the exact opposite effect as multiple users, including prominent on-chain detective ZachXBT, accused Zagabond of rug pulling all three projects he described.

According to Zagabond, he was behind CryptoPhunks, Tendies and CryptoZunks, projects he called “experiments.” In the end, Zagabond admitted, he withdrew from all three.

The story mobilized the NFT community to unearth the details of Zagabond’s “experiments,” and ZachXBT concluded that Zagabond had “profited millions while buyers were left holding the bag.”

According to the sleuth, Zagabond vanished immediately after the launch of his Tendies collection without even revealing the art, which, according to Zagabond, was supposed to be a sort of fast food chicken visuals. A month later, Zagabond reportedly pretended to be a woman for his Zunks collection.

Azuki is now the sixth biggest NFT collection on OpenSea by all-time volume, surpassing CLONE X - X TAKASHI MURAKAMI, the Decentraland metaverse parcel shop, The Sandbox, and the recently minted Moonbirds. Over the last few weeks, Azuki devs have been busy with the phased launch of Beanz, Azuki’s companion collection.

The FUD created by Zagabond’s announcement could well undermine those efforts, spooking holders who have been promised airdrops and experiences, among other perks. The Azuki community, known as The Garden, was advertised as a meeting place for “artists, builders, and web3 enthusiasts” looking to build a “decentralized future.”