Borrowed from the Spanish word for fire, fuego is used in English as a slang term for something “excellent” or “sexy,” with the phrase en fuego expressing something “on fire” or “performing extremely well.”
Vroomway Preview Image
In my ongoing exploration of Decentraland Play-to-earn games, I will introduce you to Nikki Fuego, the project lead of Vroomway. Scheduled for alpha release on August 1st, Vroomway and the work Nikki has done to bring it to fruition is something anyone looking to build within DCL can learn from.
Before we dive into Vroomway and everything about it that excites me, I want to introduce you to Nikki and all the things about her that make me think no one else is better suited to create a unique project.
Who is Nikki Fuego?
Nikki Fuego entered Decentraland in November of 2021, and little did we know, but one of the most exciting new creators of 2022 had just arrived to set fire to our expectations. With a mind as sharp, a vision as clear, and a style as unique as anyone’s in the space, few people exude confidence and inspire me like Nikki Fuego.
Don’t misunderstand me; Nikki would not describe herself as “exuding confidence” and would be the first person to balk at that description. Somehow she can be humble and self-aware and communicate it in a way that does not make you question her ability to execute her vision.
There are only a handful of people I engage with regularly that I would say are probably more intelligent than me in all the areas I pride myself on being within my wheelhouse. Nikki is one of them. On top of that, she’s unquestionably brilliant and knowledgable in many other areas that I’m blind to. I don’t even want to attempt to explain it, because I’ll embarrass myself.
It’s gotten to the point that when I find something within Decentraland that I don’t like or understand, I go to Nikki to explain why it is the way it is. She has yet to fail to explain things to me in a way that I understand; even if it doesn’t always appease my frustration, it is usually enough to stop me from tweeting about it.
What makes this so remarkable is that Nikki Fuego isn’t an SDK dev or 3D Modeler with a decade of experience. Almost everything Nikki knows about Decentraland she has taught herself within the last 6-months. Hitting the ground running, Nikki created her first wearable, the Shroom Trip Aura, released by Misendii#fbb2 in December, just a month after joining Decentraland.
Innovation, not imitation
While consuming anything and everything she could to learn about 3D modeling and how to level up her skills within Decentraland, Nikki found LowpolyStore and their tutorial videos.
Inspired by the Water Tiger Mount, created by LowpolyStore for their Year of the Tiger collection. Why couldn't you have cars if you could ride a tiger in the metaverse?
Releasing the Vroom OG, in many ways, is the inciting incident of this story. The beginning of a journey that would take Nikki from a 3D modeler for hire to an innovator inspiring others within the space.
Innovation is often met with a couple of reactions: Copycats or establishment pushback. Nikki and the VroomVrooms were no exception. It wasn’t long before almost everyone who knew how to 3D model was flooding the wearable committee with “vehicles” for approval.
We will never know if it was the surge of low-effort copycats or a genuine reaction to the limitations of, and future-proofing, DCL. Regardless of the reason, it didn’t take long before the Decentraland wearable committee updated the wearable submission requirements, and vehicles were no longer permitted.
Nikki is no stranger to “hurdles,” you don’t need to know her well to know she has one response to anything getting in her way. “Hell no!”
Within days of a setback that lesser people would have let stop them in their tracks, Nikki was diving into the DCL library and discovering exactly what was needed to make her vision a reality.
With an event already announced and her hopes of awarding more vehicles as prizes dashed, Nikki’s event was in jeopardy.
Most people would be up to their eyeballs in work, just trying to throw an event of their own, but with Fashion Week coming, Nikki wasn’t going to miss an opportunity to show the world what she was capable of.
Nikki released four different pieces leading up to fashion week in March. All have sold out since they were released. For any artist, Nikki’s fashion week would be considered excellent. When you remember Nikki had released her first wearables a little more than a month prior, was working on a large-scale event, and preparing a grant proposal, it is remarkable.
With fashion week behind her and the Grand Prix being the most talked about event in Decentraland in April, it was time to make cars a Decentraland reality.
Check out The Vroomway Grant Proposal. In the next few weeks, I will discuss it and the update(s) as we move towards the Alpha testing release on August 1st.