Concertgoers at this year’s Coachella Music Festival will be able to earn perks and upgrades by playing a blockchain-based game called Coachella Quests developed by the festival's Coachella Innovations division in partnership with Ava Labs, the company behind the Avalanche blockchain.

Coachella attendees who complete quests at the event and on the Coachella Discord server will earn “stamps” and points that can be traded for exclusive festival benefits and experiences, including access to the Oasis VIP lounge, unreleased music, and more—including a rare NFT that comes with two 2025 festival guest passes.

In exchange, Coachella organizers will gain insights into what game-playing guests are doing during the event.

“[The Quest] is related to the festival experience and to different partners, artists, and locations at the festival, and can see where you complete the challenge,” Coachella Innovation Lead Sam Schoonover told Decrypt. “Once you do, you earn stamps, which are NFT tokens that not only are a record of your experience at the show, but also tell Coachella a little bit more about consumers and what it is they're doing at the festival.”


Coachella is releasing the Coachella Canvas app today, enabling the Avalanche-enhanced experience at the festival. Attendees can create a Canvas Card, which acts as a personal passport, and document their experiences at Coachella. As they collect NFTs at the event, they'll be tracked in the app with the integrated OpenSea Wallet onboard. Schoonover added that all of the rules to complete the quests and the prize redemption details will be posted alongside the festival program at launch.

“The real purpose behind the program is to engage users,” Ava Lab Director of Enterprise Business Development Paul Chodirker added. “It's not for data retention or to learn exactly who these individuals are. It is to have attendees who have already bought the ticket, and are already going to enjoy the festival, to have an elevated experience.”

The partnership with Ava Labs is not Coachella's first foray into Web3. In February 2022, Coachella partnered with defunct cryptocurrency exchange FTX US to auction a lifetime pass as an NFT on the Solana blockchain, along with other collectibles. After FTX collapsed the following November, Coachella said it was working on a plan to help customers who had spent over $1.5 million on NFTs that were stranded on the FTX platform following the exchange's bankruptcy filing.


Last month, Ava Labs teamed with the Coachella Music Festival to launch a collection of 1,000 digital collectibles on the OpenSea marketplace called The VIP Pass + Oasis Lounge Keepsake. The Avalanche NFT came with a VIP Festival Pass for this year’s event, plus access to the titular lounge that includes complimentary drinks and other amenities.

Launched in September 2020 by Ava Labs, Avalanche is a blockchain platform that supports smart contracts and decentralized applications. It touts high data throughput, low latency, and the capability to confirm transactions in under a second. Ava Labs is confident that the chain can handle the Coachella live experience.

“The way our consensus mechanism is architected is such that we can handle a huge festival like Coachella, with hundreds of thousands of attendees, and transactions that can run smoothly on our network without any downtime,” Chodirker said. “We've proven that over the years in terms of our technology, so that's a big reason why I think this is a really great partnership.”

According to Chodirker, Ava Labs aimed to simplify the user experience, and users can easily log in with email or social media. Upon completing quests, Chodirker continued, stamps automatically appear on their canvas card. The card turns into a dynamic NFT, gathering stamps as users achieve tasks.

Schoonover said that while a robust blockchain is important, it's not what fans ultimately care about.

“Fans don't know or care that it is an NFT, but an NFT is useful for us because the fan's privacy is still protected, but we can know more about what people want to do on the festival side,” he said.  “It's like a new version of a [web browser] cookie.

“But fans aren't going to play along with that if they have to pay money for it, and so Avalanche has a number of different technologies that we're using to ensure that fans don't have to spend money and tokens can still be minted and stored on the blockchain,” he continued. ”I think that's really why we wanted to work with Avalanche.”

As Chodirker explained, at Coachella, Avalanche will have an activation hub for the Coachella Quest program to help with setup and helping players get started. Since connectivity is a common problem at outdoor concerts, Chodirker expects that visitors will be drawn to the Avalanche hub and thus learn about the project when they come looking for Wi-Fi.


"Aside from participating in the program, I think we'll probably get quite the crowd wanting to use a stronger Wi-Fi signal near the hub," Chodirker said.  “Our tech team is working 24/7 to ensure everything runs smoothly."

Edited by Ryan Ozawa.

Editor's note: This story was updated after publication to clarify the development team behind the game and mention the use of the OpenSea Wallet within the app.

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