Category Archives: Gaming

Unity acquires Vivox, which powers voice chat in Fortnite and League of Legends

Game engine maker Unity believes voice communications are going to grow to become a critical part of gaming across platforms and it’s buying one of the top companies in the space to bolster what its customers can build on the its platform. Unity has acquired Vivox, a company that powers voice and text chat for the world’s most massive gaming titles from Fortnite to PUBG to League of Legends. The company’s positional voice chat enable gamers to hear other players chatting around them directionally in 3D space. […]

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Sapphire Ventures bets big on esports and entertainment with new $115M fund

Sapphire Ventures, formerly the corporate venture capital arm of SAP, has lassoed $115 million from new limited partners (LPs) to invest at the intersection of tech, sports, media and entertainment. A majority of the LPs for the new fund, called Sapphire Sport, have ties to the sports industry, from City Football Group, which owns English Premier League team Manchester City, to Adidas, the owners of the Indiana Pacers, New York Jets, San Jose Sharks and Tampa Bay Lightning, among others. The firm plans to do five to six investments per […]

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Epic Games buys 3Lateral, maker of super-realistic ‘digital humans’

Epic Games announced this morning that they’ve acquired Serbia-based 3Lateral, a game studio focused on designing more realistic computer-generated human characters. The team of 60+ will be continuing their work with existing partners and maintaining their presence in Serbia. 3Lateral founder Vladimir Mastilovic will lead Epic Games’ worldwide digital humans efforts, the company says. No details on a price or specific deal terms were given. The non-digital human team behind 3Lateral Epic Games, which operates Fortnite as well as the Unreal Engine game development platform, has worked with […]

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Consolidation is coming to gaming, and Jam City raises $145 million to capitalize on it

A slew of banks are coming together to back a new roll-up strategy for the Los Angeles-based mobile gaming studio Jam City and giving the company $145 million in new funding to carry that out. There’s no word on whether the new money is in equity or debt, but what is certain is that JPMorgan Chase Bank, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and syndicate partners, including Silicon Valley Bank, SunTrust Bank and CIT Bank, are all involved in the deal. “In a global mobile games market that is consolidating, […]

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Daily Crunch: Nvidia breaks with tradition at CES 2019

The Daily Crunch is TechCrunch’s roundup of our biggest and most important stories. If you’d like to get this delivered to your inbox every day at around 9am Pacific, you can subscribe here: 1. Nvidia launches the $349 GeForce RTX 2060 Nvidia broke with tradition and put a new focus on gaming at CES. Last night the company unveiled the RTX 2060, a $349 low-end version of its new Turing-based desktop graphics cards. The RTX 2060 will be available on Jan. 15. 2. Elon Musk’s vision of […]

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Scratch 3.0 is now available

The only kids’ programming language worth using, Scratch, just celebrated the launch of Scratch 3.0, an update that adds some interesting new functionality to the powerful open-source tool. Scratch, for those without school-aged children, is a block-based programming language that lets you make little games and “cartoons” with sprites and animated figures. The system is surprisingly complex, and kids have created things like Minecraft platformers, fun arcade games and whatever this is. The new version of scratch includes extensions that allow you to control hardware, as well […]

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HQ Trivia launches HQ Words as reinstalled CEO seeks a game-changer

HQ’s expansion beyond trivia is emerging from beta, but the question is whether it’s different and accessible enough to revive the startup’s growth. HQ Words opens to everyone today with games at 6:30pm PT within the HQ Trivia app after several weeks of closed beta testing of the Wheel Of Fortune-style game. The launch will be the first big move of Rus Yusupov now that he’s been officially renamed CEO a week after the tragic death of fellow co-founder and former CEO Colin Kroll, HQ confirms to […]

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Crowdfunded developer of space sim Star Citizen takes on $46M in funding at nearly $500M valuation

The story of the game Star Citizen and Cloud Imperium, the company developing it, is almost too ludicrous to believe: a crowdfunding effort to create a space sim of unparalleled size and realism, raising hundreds of millions, with backers paying thousands for ships and gear in a game that’s years from release. Yet it’s real enough that it just pulled in $42 million in private funding to help bring it closer to release. Star Citizen began as the brainchild of Chris Roberts, architect of the Wing Commander […]

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Zynga to acquire Small Giant Games, the maker of Empires & Puzzles, for $700M

Social game developer Zynga has entered into an agreement to acquire Small Giant Games, the startup behind the popular mobile game Empires & Puzzles, in a deal expected to total $700 million. Zynga, which has tumbled since its 2011 Nasdaq initial public offering, will initially acquire 80 percent of Small Giant Games for $560 million, composed of $330 million in cash and $230 million of unregistered Zynga common stock. Zynga will fund part of the transaction with a $200 million credit facility. “We’ve been impressed by the quality […]

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Kahoot, a ‘Netflix for education’, launches an accelerator to tap gaming and education startups

On the back of Disney increasing its shareholding in Oslo-based Kahoot to four percent last week, Kahoot today announced a new initiative that helps to position the popular startup — which already has 60 million games and has seen over 1 billion players engage on its platform over the last year — as the “Netflix for education apps.” It’s launching Kahoot! Ignite, a new accelerator for like-minded startups that are pushing the boundaries of education through gaming and other means. In addition to that, Kahoot today also said […]

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