Getting Started on Mantle
Dear Bankless Nation,
Last week, we looked at the Linea L2 opportunity. Today, we're zooming into the mainnet of Mantle and showing you how to get onboarded to this modular rollup blockchain.
Ethereum began as a “monolithic” blockchain.
That means initially the network was solely responsible for providing its own security, data availability, and transaction execution capabilities.
In recent years, the Ethereum ecosystem has made great progress toward a more “modular” vision, through which the network can tap into external layers to scale its own powers to new heights.
To date this scaling has manifested for Ethereum in the form of layer-two (L2) rollups, called such because they roll many transactions up, so to speak, and then efficiently batch them to Ethereum, thus serving as external execution layers for making Ethereum transactions very cheap and very fast.
As the modular blockchain scene has started to evolve, more projects have begun exploring new possible rollup combinations — in other words, providing their own execution, relying on Ethereum for security, and then also tapping into a separate protocol for their data availability needs.
One such L2 like this? Mantle.
Mantle 101, the Modular Rollup
Mantle is an optimistic-style (as opposed to zk-style) rollup.
The L2 isn’t derived from Optimism’s modular OP Stack framework that’s been spawning rollups left and right lately, but it is based on a fork of Optimism’s Optimistic Virtual Machine (OVM) system.
That covers the execution side of things for Mantle, and it’s an L2 so we already know it derives its security from Ethereum. So what about data availability?
Here, Mantle notably stands out because it’s the first rollup that plans to tap into the EigenDA data availability solution via EigenLayer once it’s live. The grand idea? Efficiency — keep the costs of storing transaction data down over time by using a bespoke special-purpose solution, EigenDA, instead of Ethereum for data availability.
The Pulse of Mantle
That said, it’s important to keep in mind that Mantle is still very early on in its development. As the rollup’s L2BEAT dashboard shows us, its in-progress status means it currently has significant weak points across essentially all its core pillars, from data availability to state validation.
As such, if you do decide to experiment with Mantle right now, do so cautiously and measuredly. Never deposit more than you can afford to lose into experimental software!
How to try Mantle
Last week, I covered how to get started with the Linea L2.
And just like exploring Linea is an early avenue to level up your XP around the zkEVM frontier, exploring Mantle offers an early opportunity to raise your XP around the modular rollup frontier.
The gist to getting started is similar, too:
- Prep your wallet — e.g. Add Mantle via Chainlist
- Bridge in funds — Mantle uses its native MNT token for gas, so bridging in MNT along with some ETH is a good starting point
- Try Mantle apps — Make your first transactions by testing some of the apps that have already deployed to the L2
Once you have funds on Mantle, you can use the Mantle website’s Ecosystem tracker to search for apps to explore across different verticals. For example, at the moment some Mantle apps you might consider starting with include:
- 🔃 iZUMi Finance (DeFi) — A multichain “liquidity-as-a-service” protocol that offers an onchain orderbook-style decentralized exchange, iZiSwap, if you’re keen to trade or provide liquidity
- 🌀 Symbiosis Finance (DeFi) — An automated market maker (AMM) DEX that specializes in facilitating cross-chain trades
- 🎨 NFTs2Me (NFTs) — A no-code NFT collection creator platform that makes it easy to drop single artworks or entire collections as NFTs on Mantle
- ⛓️ Holograph (NFTs) — An omnichain NFT minting protocol that routinely hosts free open edition art drops with support across a range of networks, including Mantle
- 👾 Lootex — (NFTs) The first NFT marketplace to launch on Mantle, with a specialty in gaming NFTs
Remember, Mantle is still in its early stages, so combine caution with your curiosity if you do dive into the L2’s burgeoning ecosystem. The network’s new blockspace has opportunities and risks alike, so tread thoughtfully and never venture beyond your comfort zone!