Unique One: A community-owned digital art NFT marketplace on NEAR

4NTS Guild
5 min readApr 26, 2022

The world of NFTs is constantly expanding from the original notion of “just digital art” as use cases continue to diversify. These new models and concepts are capital intensive to implement, ushering in a gradual shift from community-run projects to more VC-supported builds that are profit-driven. The Unique One goal has always been to run a truly decentralized project that puts the artists, creators, and collectors at its core and pushes the utility and use case of NFTs as digital art.

By the community, for the community

Unique One is a substrate-based decentralized community-owned and managed non-profit NFT art marketplace, specifically focused on digital arts.

The project came to life in the thick of the Covid-19 pandemic. Amid the lockdowns and tight safety measures, artists and creators were taking the full brunt of not being able to work or earn. The concept of NFTs was on the rise and quickly offered a solution through digitalization and a new way for creators to engage with fans and art enthusiasts. However, existing marketplaces posed new challenges for artists. Backed by VCs, many marketplaces were built for profit and rapidly developed high barriers to entry for the artists due to high minting fees. Meanwhile, on the other hand, collectors had to deal with high platform fees, which did not reflect the value of the art or artists but rather the marketplace.

“When the Unique One team came together, we really only had one goal in mind — To find out if we could build a truly decentralized, non-profit, zero-net fee NFT art marketplace.”

— Jason Wong, BD Head, UniqueOne.Network

Strongly committed to decentralization, the Unique One team rejected all venture capital support during its launch, and continues to be run entirely by its community of artists, creators, collectors, and fans. In addition, Unique One is also building as an appchain on Octopus Network to leverage Leased Proof-of-Stake (LPoS) security, interoperability between NEAR and Ethereum via the Rainbow Bridge, and scalability. This means Unique One can continue to scale and be insulated from third-party VC backing. The mission of Unique One is to be a fully community-run marketplace that grows and brings together the world of artists, creators, and collectors.

Core Features

The fundamental value proposition of Unique One is a fully decentralized and community-owned marketplace that offers low barriers to entry and zero-net fees for artists, creators and collectors. The platform’s core features reflect their drive to put the artists and creators at the centre of their project.


Not backed by any VCs, Unique One has maintained a fully decentralized structure by being community-owned and managed. Governance, decisions and participation in the platform’s activities are actioned through the platform’s native token $RARE


Unique One only charges 1% of the transaction fee on collectors and buyers using a net-zero policy on the platform. This fee is used to repurchase the native token from Uniswap and Polkaswap, which is then redistributed to token holders or burned to increase the value of circulating tokens.

Artist no-fee

Artists on the Unique One platform are charged no fees for putting their work on the marketplace.

Creation and Usage rewards

At the heart of the Unique One project is the artists, which is why Unique One is committed to making sure they get total remuneration for their work and also rewards from the platform (creation mining) for using the platform. 10% of the total supply of $RARE tokens has been allocated for creation mining. In addition, unique One has usage mining for creators and collectors, which rewards and incentivizes them for being active on the platform with $RARE tokens.

Contests for artists

The platform hosts monthly artists’ contests, which reward the winners with $RARE. One million $RARE from the total supply has been set aside for contest rewards.

Liquidity mining

For holders of $RARE tokens who provide liquidity on exchanges, 1 million $RARE tokens have been allocated from the total supply as rewards.


Unique One is a network of two digital art NFT platforms.


The flagship product of Unique One, Unique.One is a general NFT marketplace for art, animations, manga, trading cards, videos and audios. The platform has Ethereum, xDAI, Polkadot, and Binance marketplaces.


More focused on photography, UniqueOne.Photo is specifically designed for photographers and allows them to share their work and interact with fans. The platform also educates photographers who are new to blockchain technology and crypto on the basics of NFTs and minting. The marketplace has a no-fee policy for photographers.


Unique One has operating Ethereum, xDAI, Polkadot and Binance Smart Chain (BSC) marketplaces. Users can connect to the marketplace of their choice using WalletConnect-compatible wallets.



$RARE is the token of the NFT marketplace and has a fixed total supply model capped at 10 million $RARE.

The token is listed on Uniswap and Polkaswap for now.


The native token of the UniqueOne.Photo platform, $FOTO, is used for governance, contest voting, and providing liquidity.

Only 100 million $FOTO will ever be created.


This is the native token for the Unique One appchain on Octopus. The token will be used initially for auditing, booting, and voting on the appchain, with its utility to be expanded once UniqueOne.Network is fully deployed.

What’s next for Unique One — Unique One Network NFT Galaxy

As congestion and high gas fees become painfully inevitable, Unique One is transitioning to a multichain and interoperable solution with an NFT application-specific blockchain (appchain) on NEAR via the Octopus Network. Without the drawback of high gas fees and taking advantage of NEAR’s scalability, the appchain will be able to provide more opportunities for its community and scale Unique One’s platforms seamlessly. The Unique One Network NFT Galaxy will have its native token, $UNET, and offer rewards to the community through creation, transaction, and volume mining. Holders of $RARE and $FOTO tokens will have the possibility of exchanging their tokens for $UNET once the appchain is online. Alongside the appchain, the Unique One team also has plans of expanding into the metaverse.

For artists and creators, there is everything to love about a platform that is fully committed to their craft and growth through decentralised, zero censorship, no-fee marketplaces that allow them to be creatively and financially liberated.

About Unique One

Unique One is a substrate-based and community-owned digital art NFT marketplace, and an application-specific blockchain leveraging Web3.0 interoperability on NEAR.

Keep up with the evolution of Unique One on Discord, Twitter and Telegram.

About Octopus Network

Described as a Web3.0 incubator, The Octopus Network is a multichain cryptonetwork for launching and running Web3.0 cost-effective leased security (LPoS) and interoperable application-specific blockchains known as appchains.

Find out the latest on Octopus Network or be part of their bustling community on Discord, Telegram, and Twitter.