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Nifty Games has launched its NFL Clash mobile game worldwide. He hopes to find a new type of sports fan who prefers action and lacks the patience for pretend games.
Clever games recently raised $ 38 million in new capital for the launch. About $ 26 million comes from an investment led by Vulcan Capital, while $ 12 million comes from debt financing. Much of that money will be used to acquire new users, CEO Jon Middleton said in an interview with GamesBeat.
Nifty couldn’t have dreamed of having this kind of war chest for launch when it started in 2018. But since that time we’ve been through a pandemic in which games have experienced a huge increase and boom. venture capital financing. And for Nifty, Peter Moore (the former head of Xbox and Sega of America operations) joined the Lafayette, Calif., Based company as a member of the board.
The game was in testing in markets like the Philippines, Brazil, Mexico, the UK, and possibly Canada. The team refined the comments for over a year.
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Given that the NFL season is going well, Middleton said now is the right time to start it.
“We thought this was the perfect time to capture the fan base, given that we have something new to play for the first time in maybe 15 years,” he said. “We have a great little thing going on here. It was great to have the NFL license from the start. We travel to the land of giants, with the guys who are there to make the big sports simulation games. But we’re pretty confident about our place in the gaming world. ”
Inspired by titles like Supercell’s Clash Royale and rivaling titles like Playdemic’s Golf Clash, Nifty focused on its quick-session one-on-one sports mobile games. And Middleton said the company got a lot more enthusiastic when it got licenses from the NFL and the NFL Players Association.
The company has raised over $ 50 million to date, making it one of the best-funded mobile game startups. Middleton and former Universal Games Director Pete Wanat started the company in 2018, and it now has 40 employees. She also subcontracted the art to other foreign companies.
The company is also working on a basketball game and has licensing agreements with the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the National Basketball Player Association (NBPA). The goal is to put together a roster of sports games, and Middleton said more are on the way.
As for the competition, in June EA agreed to buy Playdemic, the maker of Golf Clash, for $ 1.4 billion. He also paid $ 2.4 billion for Glu, whose portfolio includes MLB games. And Zynga, led by former EA executives Frank Gibeau and Bernard Kim, bought StarLark, the Chinese developer of Golf Rivals for $ 525 million. This agreement ends today.
This means that we are going to see some sort of battle royale in the fast-playing sports titles market.
I asked board member Moore if the sleeping giants had awakened. And Moore said they “always wipe the sleep from their eyes” because Nifty Games was almost ready to ship their titles while the others were just getting started.
While mobile games don’t have covers, the company still has covers for athletes. These are NFL quarterbacks Josh Allen and Kyler Murray. Fans will be able to choose from all of the NFL players to create their own unbeatable teams. Overall, the game has over 120 current and former players from each team.
“We don’t have the marketing budgets to really attract this kind of guy,” Middleton said. “It’s really more because they love what we’re doing.”
The free game is available in iOS and Google Play stores.
“The NFL is delighted to partner with Nifty Games for the global launch of NFL Clash,” said Rachel Hoagland, vice president of games and sports for the NFL, in a statement. “Knowing the tremendous love for video games among our fan base and the ever increasing popularity of mobile games, NFL Clash will truly resonate with our audience.”
And Allen said in a statement, “I’m a great player, so being selected as a star player for NFL Clash is awesome. This game is quick to play, with its one-on-one gameplay and easy to learn, and allows for fun and fierce competition.
In the game, a human player will face each other in quick matches. All 32 NFL teams are depicted in their own 3D stadiums. Players manage individual gameplay for special abilities by position, unit-specific moves for offense, defense, special teams, and pre-snap player movement. Players can participate in predefined game calls or play a special training mode. They can also take advantage of daily in-game store offers and events.
“We’re going to connect more and more with what’s going on in the field games, on a weekly basis, with our events,” Middleton said. “Then you will see us develop further with more games to come. We’re just happy to go out first, like sending your first child to school. It’s 95% anxiety and 5% excitement. We are swinging above our weight and we are happy to do so.
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