Polymorphic Universe

Mark Ward
Published in
4 min readJun 27, 2021


The moment we all have been waiting for, the first official Universe drop, the Polymorphs!

What is a Polymorph?

We believe that Polymorphs are the beginning of what will be a wave of technically advanced NFTs for the Web3 ecosystem. Like many collections before us, Polymorphs exist with rarity and traits but with a spin. They can morph on command from their owners to change the appearance of them over time. Similar to how it is next to impossible to get the same Ethereum wallet twice, it will also be next to impossible to scramble the same Polymorph twice. For that reason, in order to get the perfect NFT, users will have the opportunity to morph individual traits against a bonding curve that resets on each scramble. Nice.

The Polymorphs will be a collection of morphing NFTs, with 11 available base skins and 200+ traits. The Polymorph’s DNA can be scrambled by its owner, which can change the Polymorph’s base skin, outfit, and wearable items.

Not all all of the Polymorphs’ DNA sequences have introduced or discovered. That means the genome can change over time by the introduction of new traits (but never subtraction of traits) if the community decides it is in the best interest of the project. Polymorphs are controlled by the xyzDAO which means the xyzDAO and Universe.xyz community control where things go from here. We’re here for it.

Unique Genome

Each Polymorph contains a 77-digit fingerprint which is randomly generated upon mint and scramble events. The randomness of the genome is sourced from a bundle of variables, including the Ethereum address of the minter, the amount of gas left during contract execution, the timestamp, block number, and more.

Each gene in the sequence is represented by 2 digits, allowing for 38 unique genes. Currently, 9 genes have been discovered by the principal scientist at Universe. The traits include a base skin, which was the first gene to be discovered, and is made up of the first two digits in the genome. 29 genes are still a mystery to scientists, but we can never know what the future holds.

Speaking of breakthroughs, one of our madder scientists leveraged advancements in novel gene-editing technology to allow the 77-digit fingerprint to be edited by the end user via a morph function. The morph function directly manipulates a user-specified gene and replaces it with a random sequence.

List of the Traits:

  • Skins (11)
  • Head/Hat (32 traits )
  • Eyewear (14 traits )
  • Torso (34 traits )
  • Pants (33 traits )
  • Shoes (25 traits )
  • Right Hand (32 traits )
  • Left Hand (32 traits )
  • Background (14 traits )

How will they be distributed?

There will be 10,000 Polymorphs available to be minted for 0.0777 ETH each. You can mint up to 20 at a time.

What can you do with Polymorphs?

On your Polymorph’s page you will have the ability to scramble the Polymorph’s entire genome, or perform single trait morphs. A full scramble costs 0.01 ETH, while the single trait morphs will be priced on a bonding curve with the following formula:

Single Morph Price = 0.01*2^x

The single morph price for a Polymorph can be reset back to the initial price by scrambling your NFT for 0.01 ETH. For example, after minting your polymorph, you could morph new shoes for 0.01 ETH. Afterwards, you could morph the item in your right hand for 0.02 ETH. Maybe you want to change the hat too, which would now cost 0.04 ETH. After a full scramble of all the traits for 0.01 ETH, your next single morph price would reset to 0.01 ETH. There are no limitations on how many times you can use either of the two scramble options.

Where can I sell a Polymorph?

Polymorphs can be sold on any ERC-721 compatible secondary sales marketplaces, including the Universe Marketplace (coming soon), OpenSea, Rarible, and more!

What is unique about Polymorphs?

Polymorphs are each unique NFTs with their own randomly generated genetic fingerprint. Each “gene” in this sequence will translate to a trait, represented visually on your polymorph. Much like actual genetics, the polymorphs can undergo mutations. By playing with the morphing bonding curves, you have the ability to scramble the genome of your Polymorph to a desired state!

Where can I morph ?

You can see all your Polymorphs on https://universe.xyz/my-nfts. Click on any of your Polymorphs to bring you to their unique scramble page where you can see the scramble options and their costs.

Decentralize Everything

All assets used in generation are stored on Arweave. A master list of all these assets can be found on a JSON file that lives on Arweave. A reference to this JSON can be found in the smart contract.

Currently the image generation and baseURI resource is happening off-chain and served under our API — we know this is not ideal. Once our decentralized computation services are fully built out, this baseURI can be adjusted by the DAO to ensure this project is always truly decentralized.

Lets build together!



Mark Ward

Mark is the DAO Operations Manager at Universe xyzDAO. Mark was involved in the early stages of BarnBridge development & is passionate about DeFi and NFTs.