Joyride Games, a platform for building and operating blockchain-powered mobile games, has raised $14 million in seed and follow-on financing. The funding comes as the first games built on the platform prepare to launch over the next six months.
Investors in the round included Coinbase Ventures, Animoca Brands, Solana Ventures, Dapper Labs, Bitkraft Ventures, SuperLayer, Modern Times Group, Mirana Ventures and other strategic blockchain investors.
“We provide [game developers] with an end-to-end publishing platform for everything they need to build, launch and operate a high-quality Web 3 game,” Joyride founder and CEO Omar Siddiqui told CoinDesk in an interview. “We provide tools and capabilities that address not just blockchain features but also publishing support, which includes analytics, A/B testing and live operations.”
Joyride is optimized for the ecosystem of Unity, a wildly popular game development engine, and allows developers to build and launch blockchain-powered esports, casual and social games on mobile devices.
The blockchain features offered by Joyride include a token wallet for players supporting multiple chains, the minting and management of non-fungible token (NFT) game assets and fungible token economy support.
Joyride plans to use the new capital to add more supported blockchains to the wallet, new NFT features and integrations with marketplaces, said Siddiqui.
Over the next six months, the funding will also help launch the first completed games built on the Joyride platform. The initial games announced were Solitaire Blitz, based on the popular card game, and Tennis Champs, an NFT-based play-to-earn game with multiplayer tennis gameplay.
The long-term roadmap could include the launch of a JRX token to serve as a medium of exchange and governance for the Joyride ecosystem, Siddiqui said. Consumers would be able to use the tokens to acquire NFTs and otherwise engage with games. Developers could get the tokens as a form of payment.
“Joyride has created a platform that enables game creators to build Web3 casual games that anyone can play, regardless of their familiarity with the underlying crypto technologies. We believe Joyride-powered social, esport, and casual games will bring frictionless blockchain experiences to the next billion users,” said SuperLayer managing partner Kevin Chou in the press release.
Despite the rocky start to the year for digital asset prices, blockchain-based gaming has only grown in popularity. As of January, there were nearly 400 active blockchain games, according to DappRadar, nearly double the number at that time last year.
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