ICturtles ran away, how to solve it?

ICturtles(https://twitter.com/ic_turtles) is an ntf project, they not only issued 10,000 turtles and 10,000 ICShellbacks, but also got 25k-grant. But they have not heard from them for several months, and the cannister of turtles has expired. We have invested a lot of ICP and energy, we need to explain, how to solve this problem?

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Has it expired or is it frozen? If it is frozen, send it some cycles and unfreeze it if the nfts are important to you. (XTC is pretty cheap on sonic right now and you can send it to a canister with a simple burn command.)

If they had not blackholed or submitted their canister to dao governance, then this is a risk. Buyer beware.

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expired and run away with our money and grant

So I see that ICTurtles is a P2E NFT Game & DAO that recieved a Dfinity grant of 25k (https://dfinity.org/grants/).

Tagging @ld-dfn1 & @diegop to see if they know what happened to ICTurtles.

Sorry, I do not have any information (I don’t work with grants) so I haven’t followed them as much only what some folks post on forums and Reddit.

Grant payments are tied to milestones. They did produce a decent amount of code for the game for which they received a subset of their grant but haven’t finished all their milestones yet. AFAIK their canister is not recoverable anymore.

Amongst other things, we need better tools for canister management and this is currently an active topic at the foundation. One feature we have under development is disabling query calls as soon as the canister reaches the freezing threshold. That way there is a certain period of time for developer/community to act on it before the canister looses state due to lack of cycles. @mikhail-turilin is currently leading the discussions on this topic and can share additional details as we make progress.



@charm claims to have lost significant ICP & energy in ICTurtles.

Since some amount of grant money came from Dfinity, what lessons would you have for potential future folks who invest in a project because they see dfinity name (as a grantor) for the project. Of course the generic advice of DYOR would apply.

But i am asking, i guess, as an awarder of 180 projects under your leadership (as VP of Growth at dfinity), are there any specific lessons that you/dfinity team have learnt that future investors in dapps built on IC could benefit from?

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First of all I would clarify that grant DOES NOT signal endorsement of any project. If one is choosing to invest in a project please DYOR.

The objective of the developer grants is to help support promising entrepreneurs/developers that can add value to the IC ecosystem. This could be in the form of expanding the developer tooling, infrastructure or say by building interesting applications that showcase the capabilities of IC. So the grant program isn’t even trying to optimize for the investment potential of a particular project.

At a high level here is how the process works:

  • All grant applications go through an evaluation by a panel of technical reviewers where the committee tries to access the team strengths, GitHub repos of previous work, their involvement in the IC community and their understanding of IC stack.
  • The teams commit to their milestones prior to being accepted in the program.
  • Each milestone review involves tracking progress against the pre-committed milestones which also involves code reviews.
  • Only when the team successfully meets their respective milestones the disbursements are made.

I wouldn’t comment on a specific team but here are some of our learnings that we have implemented along the way:

  • We rarely issue a grant to a team that doesn’t have a developer already aligned with them. In the past we have had teams that would commit to recruiting a contract developer but that never materialized for most.
  • In case a team has an internal conflict (which has happened a few times) we would immediately dissolve the grant. They could reapply as independent teams but will be going through an independent review again.
  • We rarely fund wallets or DeFi projects that are’t open sourced (and do not have a plan to delegate control of their canister to DAO or blackhole).
  • Lot stronger weightage is now given to open sourcing. That way even if the team abandons the project the entire work doesn’t go waste and the rest of the community is open to build upon it.

Now these wouldn’t solve for someone losing their investments and we would still need people to do their own research. Very open to any other suggestions from the community.


A quick follow-up on the canister management plans. We are exploring a number of features that will help developers to be aware of cycle depletion and prevent the information from being lost:

  • System events will provide a generic mechanism for canisters to react to lifecycle events like getting out of cycles
  • Backup/restore will help save the data outside of the canister to be able to restore it in a case of data loss for any reason
  • Canister WHOIS and dfx top will provide infrastructure for the community for building better canister management dashboards
  • Cycle predictive modeling will enable a better forecast of cycle usage and billing costs

We are considering a few long-term features that I will share information about a bit later.

For more information please see SDK roadmap: SDK '22-23 Roadmap Themes