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InfiniteWorld takes Web3 and the Metaverse seriously, so it acquired the Super Bit Machine game studio for an undisclosed price.
The goal is to use the independent gaming studio, producer of Armajet, to create games that will drive consumer engagement for InfiniteWorld, an infrastructure company that wants to enable brands to create, monetize and interact with digital content.
“We are bringing communities from Web2 to Web3 and our belief is that gaming is the key to that,” said InfiniteWorld CEO Brad Allen in an interview with GamesBeat. “It’s about bringing next-level engagement and experience, which is what Web3 and the metaverse are. Super Bit Machine has scalable technology around games and gaming infrastructure that allows us to really quickly enter the market with this higher level of engagement.
I interviewed Allen and Alexander Krivicich, founder of Super Bit Machine, who are still optimistic about Web3, gaming, and the metaverse despite a tough economy.
Super Bit Machine is a mobile gaming studio started by veterans who have experience running the top 10 highest-grossing multiplayer games on iOS and Android.
Web3, games and metaverse
The acquisition aims to strengthen InfiniteWorld’s ability to bring metaverse and Web3 experiences to brands, with the addition of real-time multiplayer game development capabilities, which will now be part of its core offering portfolio.
The deal also signals the continued crossover between blockchain and gaming platforms and links traditional gaming experiences currently delivered via mobile, PC and console with dynamic Web3 capabilities, Allen said.
“By partnering with experienced game developers who have made significant advances in the gaming industry, we are taking a natural step towards becoming the one-stop shop for brands and creators looking to enter the Web3 space,” said Allen. “We look forward to continuing to push the boundaries of what’s possible by amplifying the experience and vision of our new Super Bit Machine team members.”
InfiniteWorld hopes to go public through a Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC), which was a simplified way to go public without the regulatory process of initial public offerings. But it is becoming increasingly difficult to do successfully due to the unstable stock market. InfiniteWorld plans to build its SPAC with Aries I Acquisition Corporation (Nasdaq: RAM) and raise $ 145 million.
“We believe gaming is critical to the mass adoption of Web3,” said Alexander Krivicich, founder of Super Bit Machine. “We have been at the forefront of creating competitive cross-platform multiplayer gaming experiences and we understand that the future of these interactions will be in the metaverse.”
Krivicich, who will become InfiniteWorld’s Chief Strategy Officer, said InfiniteWorld continues to consolidate itself as a leader in metaverse technologies by integrating gaming as the central pillar of its internal branding and intellectual property strategy.
Krivicich started making mobile and social games in 2009 at Electronic Arts. He co-founded Buffalo Studios, creator of the hit game Bingo Blitz, in 2010. And he sold it to Caesars Interactive / Playtika.
“We have built quite a sophisticated platform architecture to support the scale of these games,” he said.
He brought that knowledge to Super Bit Machine, which he co-founded in 2015. He is still the executive chairman and the studio remains small with just eight people. InfiniteWorld has over 100 people.
Super Bit Machine focused on bringing fast-paced competitive multiplayer experiences to the mobile gaming ecosystem. It launched its flagship game Armajet on Steam and iOS as an arcade action game. This showed that the company could create low-latency real-time multiplayer proprietary netcode and create cross-platform games across mobile, PC and console at scale, Krivicich said. The title debuted in beta in 2016 and launched its final version in 2019.
“It was a completely cross-platform game, because we always believed that games should be played everywhere,” he said. “We wanted our games to be accessible wherever players wanted to play them.”
The Super Bit Machine team has been working together in multiple studios for over a decade. Executives own and operate game studios which have been acquired by Playtika, Caesars Interactive Entertainment, and Zynga.
“We will scale to support InfiniteWorld’s budding new gaming division,” said Krivicich. “We will grow rapidly, but we really believe in creating products with smaller play cells.”
The company started talking to InfiniteWorld because they were working on a game with Web3 elements. The technology seemed to fit well between companies and thus resulted in acquisition negotiations.
“Creating multiplayer experiences is our wheelhouse,” said Krivicich. “When we started talking to InfiniteWorld, it became clear that their vision of building and scaling this to create great gaming products, not just for some of their partners, but internal intellectual property, was very exciting for us.”
Allen joined as CEO in May and had been a senior consultant three months earlier. InfiniteWorld was born about 18 months ago, from the holding Citizens Reserve managed by Addison McKenzie, which helped pioneer blockchain technology nicknamed Suku. As non-fungible tokens (NFTs) caught fire last year, the company decided to create InfiniteWorld to seize this opportunity.
By going public, Allen hopes to distinguish InfiniteWorld from the overrated scams and blockchain startups that have given Web3 a bad reputation.
“As a publicly traded company, the scrutiny of regulatory and legal issues and everything in between will be high,” Allen said. “I went through the era of doctors, social media and virtual reality. In those early days, people couldn’t even agree on a definition of Web3 and metaverse. So you’re going to have all kinds of people getting into this thing, for better or for worse, some just jump on the bandwagon because of all that money being made.
With a financial background as an investment banker and start-up CEO, Allen said he believes it creates more opportunities now during the cryptocurrency winter and NFT crisis because it will eliminate the bad actors.
“And then we’ll go public,” he said. “This is the path for Web3.”
Allen is optimistic about the arrival of good products on the market like Apple, which has invested heavily in AR / VR with its planned glasses one day. But Allen said the company is not yet showing its cards with internal intellectual property and other projects.
Krivicich said none of the early technologies produced a well-designed and thought-out experience, which is why it’s important to drive with a good experience and high-quality gameplay.
“We are assembling a team of creators with a lot of experience and we are coming up with the resources,” he said. “You have to build something that isn’t just reactive or based on speculation. I think it’s great that there is this correction in the market because I think it’s really starting to separate the wheat from the chaff. “
I asked Krivicich about the stamina of hardcore NFT gamers. He said there is still a lot of work to be done to invent technologies and determine the usefulness of things like NFTs.
“I think it’s been, once again, executed in a way that has so far been very damaging to players in general,” he said. “We still have a long way to go. We build first with experience.
I’ve noticed that I think this recession means that this shift to quality will have to happen first and Krivicich agrees.
He said the company will focus on Web3 games that aren’t proprietary or terribly complex. Instead, Krivicich wants to focus on accessible and equal games.
“We want this to be fun for all players and we want to use it as an opportunity to evolve into Web3,” he said.
Content is king
The combined companies are optimistic about how they will come out at the right time.
“We want to be the first to market a variety of initiatives, including games,” Allen said. “Content is still king and with Metaverse and Web3 you need to have compelling content.”
He said the products are aimed at the next generation, Gen Z, who are more comfortable with technology, creators and digital assets. He noted that the company had many deals with partners ranging from Chibi to McLaren.
“There’s a lot of new technology coming up,” he said. “Then there is the ownership part of the blockchain itself. All these pieces fit together. It is a fascinating time.
Recession is also a time when the company can operate cheaply and take its time to build something appropriate.
“We are thrilled to do it,” said Krivicich. “I’ve never seen anything bigger than this border. And having personally gone through this transition from early PCs and consoles to mobile games, I think gamers have a lot of stamina at first. But now we see games like Diablo Immortal coming out that are just awesome. And so we’re in another one of those inflection points. I think it’s very interesting to see where it takes us with player ownership of digital assets. “
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