A Guide to Ranking Rare NFTs


Despite tough times, the excitement surrounding NFTs persists. For example, feelings of nostalgia and pride abound in digital ownership, mirroring what many think of physical collectibles. For many collectors, hitting NFTs is like opening a new deck of baseball cards. You never know the outcome, but there is always the possibility of releasing something rare. With most PFP projects bid at 10,000, the odds aren’t promising, but the potential to hit it big is enough to attract collectors.

Others are more systematic, using NFT rarity tools to “snipe” NFTs from the secondary market by finding market opportunities where an NFT’s rarity (read: market value) and list price are misaligned. Some do both.

So let’s dive into the NFT rarity tools to find out how rarity is calculated, how to use the tools, and the best tools to meet collectors’ needs.

What is NFT rarity?

As the name suggests, NFT rarity measures how rare an NFT is relative to the rest of the collection. Generally governed by the laws of supply and demand, scarcity and market value go hand in hand.

In the case of most PFP projects, rarity stems from the exclusivity of traits, or the various building blocks and attributes that form the final token. The most effective strategies include using groups of traits, sub-traits, and 1/1 traits to create objective rarity.

Credit: Tokenized HQ

Let’s take Bored Ape Yacht Club as an example.

As shown on OpenSea, BAYC has seven distinct feature groups: background, clothes, earrings, eyes, fur, hat, and mouth. Beneath each, lives a collection of sub traits that carry different levels of rarity depending on how often they appear in the collection. The total number of strokes may also play a role, which it does in BAYC, bringing the total number of “sub-strokes” to eight.

Credit: OpenSea

But as with everything, there are exceptions to the rule. With 1/1 or limited edition artwork, a limited supply can create both rarity and scarcity, driving value and demand. In some cases, the absence of traits or the pairing of traits (think: red shirt and red pants) will be perceived as having additional value within a community. In the case of BAYC, trait count is a community-specific attribute, with all monkeys garnering between four and seven traits. There are only 254 monkeys with four traits, increasing their rarity and inherent value.

But to really explore and discover the nuance of NFT rarity, one needs to use a rarity tool.

Rarity tools are software that calculates and ranks NFTs based on their rarity. Think of it as a database where users can search for specific tokens to see how rare they are in their relative collection, while showing exactly what factors contribute to their rarity score. With this information, collectors can easily compare the rarity and value of individual NFTs within the same collection to better inform their purchasing decisions.

It’s important to note that each rarity tool platform has its own proprietary rating system, so although the actual rarity rankings are the same on all platforms, the rarity score itself will likely be different.

With this information, collectors can easily compare the rarity and value of individual NFTs within the same collection.

How is NFT rarity calculated?

While there are three additional ways to calculate rarity (Trait Rarity Ranking, Average Trait Rarity, and Statistical Rarity), Rarity Score has proven to be the most accurate method.

First introduced and implemented by the founder of rarity.tools, a popular rarity tool, the formula is as follows.

Definition: rarity score

This formula was invented to resolve the biases in previous rarity calculation methods:

  • Trait rarity ranking (ranking only on the rarest trait).
  • Average Trait Rarity (average of the rarity of all traits together)
  • Statistical rarity (multiplying all trait rarities together).

As demonstrated in a rarety.tools blog post titled Rarity Ranking: Understanding Rarity Calculation Methods, if you were to compare three monkeys using three different methods, you would get three completely different results. While the rarity of traits places the ranking too a lot of emphasis on rare traits, and average and stat rarity not placing enough, Rarity Score quickly becomes the perfect middle ground.

And now, even though the formula may not be exactly similarly, all rarity tool platforms have implemented their own version of Rarity Score which provides the same accurate ranking result across all platforms.

With sleek and simple user interfaces, most rarity tools are straightforward. Consider Rarity Sniper, another popular rarity tool in the market. First, find a collection you’d like to explore. Locate the search bar and type in the collection of your choice. We will continue to use Bored Ape Yacht Club here.

Once a collection is selected, you are taken to a separate collection page displaying key statistics such as total supply, unique owners, floor price and volume, as well as a view of the entire collection. the collection listed from rarest to least rare.

Users can sort the collection by ascending or descending rating, price, NFT ID, etc. in the left sidebar. You’ll also find a “Traits” switch, which displays a full list of all trait categories, subcategories, and occurrence percentages.

Credit: Rarity Sniper

To find the ranking of a specific token, first locate the token ID in the details section of an individual NFT listing on OpenSea (or any other marketplace), as shown in the image below.

Credit: OpenSea

Then just type the token ID in the “Verify your NFT” field and click “Verify”.

Credit: Rarity Sniper

The search will return your individual token, which you can then click on to reveal a full breakdown of each trait and its rarity in the collection, along with the rarity score and rank assigned to the token.

Credit: OpenSea

It is important to note that while all rarity tools have similar core functionality, there are nuances in designs and functionality, so the user experience may not be identical. We strongly encourage you to explore each tool further to find the one that best fits your use case.

Sniper rarity

As the example above shows, Rarity Sniper is one of the most robust and reliable rarity tools on the market. With a loyal community of over 492,000 Twitter followers and 321,000 Discord members, the platform offers the details of nearly 1,800 NFT collections across 18 different blockchains. As the self-proclaimed “#1 source of NFT scarcity,” the platform aims to be bigger than just scarcity tools, providing users with a comprehensive analysis platform, press briefing and release schedule to stay up to date on the rapidly changing industry.


Unlike Rarity Sniper, which gives a single rarity score, rarity.tools allows collectors to filter by the four different calculation methods. It also allows users to explore specific attributes that platforms such as Rarity Sniper do not provide. While rarety.tools is one of the most popular tools among enthusiasts, the user interface is a little clunkier and harder to navigate.

The Collector Swag Z recognizes the somewhat outdated design of Rarity Tools, but its simplicity has helped him better understand the key buying opportunities in certain collections. “While there are other business analytics tools out there with more features, Rarity Tools is perfect for users who only focus on rarity information. It does exactly what it’s supposed to do.


Trait Sniper, which dubs itself “The Ultimate NFT Trading Platform”, is one of the most comprehensive NFT trading tools on the market. His bot detects art and reveals instantly and provides full rarity ratings in 30 seconds. Users can filter by feature, rating, and price while setting mass auction parameters. Trait Sniper also has its own Chrome extension to help users find ratings and floor prices while browsing OpenSea. Lifetime Access Passes can be purchased on the secondary market on OpenSea.

For Mikio Crosbythe founder of the NFT platform Buy-Now Pay-Later cyan, Trait Sniper has become his go-to resource for analyzing rarity, ranking, and more. After playing around with various tools in the market, the user experience of Trait Sniper reigns supreme.

“The way NFTs are displayed in a spreadsheet format, which makes it easier to scroll through,” he said in an interview with nft now. “Sorting for each category makes it easy to compare on the fly and filter by conditions if needed. The user interface may seem intimidating at first, but once you overcome the small learning curve, it becomes a powerful tool. »

icy tools

The icy.tools all-in-one NFT analysis platform is designed to help traders make better, more informed decisions. Founded in 2021, it has quickly become the go-to resource for many serious traders, thanks in large part to its premium plan with real-time charts and data, favorites and firehose feeds.

Ultimately, Crosby says, it comes down to personal preferences and merchant needs.

“Those who want to quickly identify NFTs that haven’t claimed an airdrop would probably be better suited to Trait Sniper because you can quickly browse the collection in array form.” he said. “Icy.tools has the most attractive user interface, although it retains many useful features. Trait Sniper has the best full scans, but is slightly harder to use without clicking. NFTScan has the best top-down overview of the market, but lacks filtering for washout trade CryptoSlam does a better job but is not always up to date.

By now you should have a basic understanding of NFT rarity and the various tools in the market. But remember, NFT rarity is not a one-time game. There are nuances to each collection and its specific tokens, and the industry is young. Utility is constantly being built into programs, where previously “common” traits can now acquire additional value. To become a more knowledgeable trader and collector, one needs to know the ins and outs of the industry. These tools only help break a small piece of the puzzle. What you choose to do with it is ultimately up to you.

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