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Love, community and gaming: a bit about the prospects of investing in the gaming community

Saturday, February 13, 2021

Startup Jedi

We talk to startups and investors, you get the value.

We are waiting for Valentine’s Day this weekend, but in today’s news, there will be nothing about classic dating apps, nothing even about the IPO of Bumble. It’s about gaming only.

Despite the stereotype that the spheres of dating and gaming are as far apart as possible, brother and sister Stephanie and Lincoln Smith, both experienced gamers, launched the 2up startup. The app is made in the aesthetics of 8-bit games and is designed to connect gamers with each other, both within the game and offline. It’s not necessarily about romantic relationships, the functionality of the app also allows you to find friends or new team members for the game. In the questionnaire, users indicate their favorite console, platform, and preferred format of the game — solo or in a team, competition, or for fun.

The app is free and available for both Android and iOS; founders plan to make a profit from premium subscriptions. Keeping in mind the target audience, they created mechanics of internal quests: the more often the users interact with the app, the more chances they get for a prize-winning console, headset, or gaming chair.

Nothing is known about the investments in 2up yet, but investors are definitely paying their attention to the projects aiming at working with the gaming community. Recently, a french startup Powder raised $14M in Series A financing, lead investor of the deal is a VC Fund Serena. The total amount of funding now amounts to $18M.

Currently, the main platforms consolidating the gaming community are Twitch, Discord, and Reddit, but a powerful application that would work exclusively for the audience of gamers is a rarity in the market. In terms of the essence and functionality, Powder is a social network like Instagram or Snapchat, but with game content only. The desktop version of the app allows you to record video directly from the game, so does the mobile version. The functionality of the service allows editing video, adding music and stickers to it before uploading, and getting feedback, and responding to the comments of subscribers.

The current version and the idea of Powder weren’t born at once, it was transformed many times unless founders decided to be guided by the community’s needs. Then they launched a server in Discord with tens of thousands of participants based on their preferences and developed an application that has already been downloaded 1.5 million times since its launch on iOS.


13 Feb 2021


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