It certainly wasn’t a good start of the year for crypto investors. Instead of a massive bull run we all hoped for, the first week of 2022 brought us a huge crash on the cryptocurrency market. Bitcoin has fallen to the lowest level it has been since July 2021, and many popular altcoins have followed its course. But while most altcoin enthusiasts don’t have much to be happy about, some alternative cryptocurrencies managed to make impressive gains despite the bear market.

Let’s take a look at what the altcoins have been up to in the first week of 2022!

Best Performing Assets of December Erase Most of Their Gains

The Bitcoin crash affected almost all altcoins, but the cryptocurrencies that were hit the hardest were the ones which were making the most spectacular gains in the last couple months of 2021. It seems now that the bull run in these assets was very short lived, and that the price increases from November and December of the past year are soon to be reversed, or in some cases have already been reversed.

Among the coins which were affected the most are gaming-related tokens. Gaming cryptos have rallied massively in the last quarter of 2021 fueled by metaverse hype, but plummeted in prices drastically in the last 7 days. The price of Gala (GALA) decreased by almost 22%, Axie Infinity (AXS) by 17.5%, The Sandbox (SAND) by over 15%, and Decentraland (MANA) by over 12%.

SAND price chart 

Other altcoins which have previously been the best performers are now the biggest losers. SushiSwap (SUSHI) has depreciated by over 18%, Polygon (MATIC) by almost 14%, Loopring (LRC) by over 13% and Zcash (ZEC) by almost 11%.

A word of mention should go to Shiba Inu (SHIB), which has consistently been one of the worst performing assets in the ecosystem over the past couple months. This week has not been different: the SHIB price has decreased by 11% to less than $0.00003, making the dream of “losing a zero’” a distant memory for the meme token’s fans that are still trying to cope with their losses.

SHIB price chart 

Cosmos Rallies Massively, But Can It Enter the Top 10?

Despite the bear market, some altcoins managed to grow massively over the last 7 days. The most successful one was Cosmos (ATOM). The ATOM price has increased by over 32%, which made Cosmos one of the top 25 largest cryptocurrencies by market capitalization.

The success of Cosmos proves that projects with strong technologic fundamentals and effective development process can thrive even if the market sentiment is bearish. Unlike many rallies which are motivated mainly by hype, the ATOM price increase is caused by important technological breakthroughs.

Recently, Cosmos users were introduced to Evmos - an EVM (Ethereum Virtual Machine) providing the Cosmos ecosystem with cross-chain interoperability that allows easy asset transfer between Cosmos and Ethereum. But that’s not the end of good news for ATOM investors - Cosmos plans to roll out a massive upgrade called Theta soon, which will greatly increase the functionality of ATOM (including NFT support), and can very likely send the Cosmos price even higher.

ATOM price chart 

What’s Actually Going On With SOL? Solana CEO Denies the Reports of a DDoS Attack

On Tuesday, January 4th, Solana users experienced massive problems in many cases making them completely unable to send any SOL transactions. Coinbase, one of the largest crypto exchanges in the world, warned its customers that Solana is having ”network-wide degraded performance.”

The situation was resolved after 5 hours. In the meantime, Solana users were speculating that the cause of the problems might have been a DDoS attack. However, the CEO of Solana Labs Anatoly Yakovenko has denied it: according to Yakovenko, Solana was down due to “some congestion due to mis-metered transitions”.

The outage on Tuesday was the second SOL downtime in the last few months. Previously, Solana was down in September 2021, when the network was completely unusable for over 18 hours.

According to blockchain experts, the root of all of Solana’s problems is the same: sacrificing decentralization to gain faster transactions and lower fees. As one of the most highly centralized corporate blockchains in the world, SOL seems to be much more vulnerable than traditional decentralized networks like Bitcoin or Ethereum. Whether Solana Labs will be able to resolve the problems or not, it definitely seems like the reports of SOL being the “Ethereum Killer” were greatly exaggerated.