High-Risk Dapps Ecosystem: Q1 Flash Report

High-risk dapps

Three months of data, in 3 minutes

For any rising industry, credibility and legitimacy are key. DappRadar has shown a high-risk dapps category since its early inception and even though these dapps are not necessarily traditional dapps with utility value.

Their success in regard to USD volumes and daily activity is impressive and can teach us a few lessons. Mainly that the underlying greed that fuels their success, has been an Achilles heel to cryptocurrency since its inception.

This content is written for research and distribution purposes and to review the current trends and data in the high-risk dapps category.

Key takeaways

  • Ethereum holds 63% of total daily activity and 99% of the total transaction volume in the high-risk category in 2020 Q1.
  • High-risk category volume on Ethereum grew by 2852.75% YoY (from 0,85M to 25M USD); by 948.37% in regards to average daily active wallets.
  • In April 2020 HEX accounted for 55% of the total volume that was generated during 2020 Q1 in the high-risk category.
  • At the time of writing HEX has already generated 15M USD volume in April 2020 representing 63% of the total Ethereum high-risk volume in 2020 Q1.
  • 14% of 724 high-risk dapps listed on DappRadar show almost zero daily activity within the last 7-days.

Transaction volume development

A clear shift has occurred during 2019 leading to Ethereum being the dominant protocol in the high-risk category. But, as we allude to later in the report. There are individual dapps driving these volumes and the situation is not as simple as it may appear.

High-Risk Dapps

Ethereum volume

High-Risk Dapps

One single dapp – HEX is responsible for generating 62.6% of Ethereum volume in the high-risk category.

High-risk dapps daily active wallets


  • The high-risk category on DappRadar is the second largest after gambling.  
  • Positively, the majority of the dapps are inactive with only 14% showing some activity of the total 724 dapps listed.
  • It is also clear that just a few dapps are inflating the majority of the volume data within individual protocols.
  • HEX is responsible for almost 64% of all Ethereum high-risk category volume in 2020 Q1 (total was 25M USD). 
  • Just.game was responsible for 80% of all TRON high-risk category volume back in 2019 Q4 (total was 8M USD)
  • The long term trends of high-risk dapps are quite simple to observe. A sharp rise, followed by a sharp fall and an inability to retain users over time in most cases. 

One observation to make would be that the percentage of active high-risk dapps running on Ethereum may at first be surprising to some readers. 59.9% or 434 of the total 724.

In fact, as the first smart contract blockchain platform that allowed the deployment of decentralized applications (dapps), it would appear that nothing more than a first-mover advantage has occurred. 

Ethereum is equipped with better development tools and support and creating a dapp such as HEX, for example, would not be possible on EOS or TRON due to the fact that nothing like Uniswap is available on those protocols. In conclusion, there is nothing sinister here, Ethereum is simply the best blockchain for dapps, no matter what the category.  

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