The Xai gaming network on scaler Arbitrum launched its initial airdrop last week, serving up some 125 million XAI tokens for early users and supporters. Over the weekend and into early Monday, the token spiked to new heights, boosting the value of said airdrop for those who held or have newly claimed the tokens.
XAI is up 35% over the last 24 hours alone, hitting a new all-time high price of $1.12 as of this writing, per data from CoinGecko.
The token debuted last week at a price of about $0.77 before sinking as low as $0.45, as tokens are typically volatile right after they launch. But early Sunday, the price began rising from about $0.60 to the current value, a pop of nearly 87% in around a day and a half.
Xai is billed as a gaming-centric “layer-3” network built on top of Arbitrum, itself a layer-2 scaling network for Ethereum. Created in collaboration between Arbitrum developer Offchain Labs, game studio Ex Populus, and the newly formed Xai Foundation, the network aims to become a destination for blockchain gaming.
Last week’s airdrop provided tokens to users who held some of the early Xai collectibles, along with users who purchased Sentry Keys to operate validator nodes, which help support the network by processing transactions.
Sentry node operators, for example, could claim 1,658 XAI per each owned node—that’s now worth about $1,860 as of this writing. And owners of the Xai Vanguard NFTs could claim 1,307 XAI apiece, or over $1,460 worth at the current price.
Overall, the value of the entire airdrop has grown from about $70 million shortly after last week’s token launch to about $140 million as of this writing, per the peak price of XAI.
Airdrops are a way for crypto protocols and apps to reward early users and contributors by giving them tokens, which also typically helps decentralize the governance process by letting token holders vote on proposals.
There’s been a surge in prominent airdrops in recent weeks as the crypto market recovers from a prolonged bear cycle, with airdrops for tokens like Jito and Pyth collectively putting hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of tokens into users’ wallets. Prominent upcoming airdrops include Solana DeFi aggregator Jupiter and cross-network gaming token Portal.