A week of news covering the intersection of business and gaming / esports, all in about one minute – everything you need to know from the “profit of esports” himself.
043 – April 4, 2021
In this week’s Business of Esports Minute: $100M Manticore, Rocket League Mobile, and Opera Gamer Browser.
From the keyboard to the boardroom, this is the Business of Esports Minute! Every single week, I, Paul Dawalibi, the prophet of esports, will be bringing you my hottest takes from the week, basically, everything you need to know about the business of esports all in about one minute. Let’s go.
Manticore Games, the developer and operator behind “Core”, recently announced it raised $100 million in series C financing. The company said it will use this investment to accelerate the growth of Core, the business’s online video game creation platform. They use the term “multiverse” multiple times in their announcement and it is misleading. Have we already moved beyond metaverse? Fundamentally, platforms like Manticore and Roblox are not new. These are distribution platforms or glorified “app stores” where developers can make games and sell them. It’s not any different than the Apple app store. That’s not to say they can’t be profitable businesses. Let’s just stop pretending that plays like Manticore are novel in any way.
Also, Rocket League released a tweet revealing that its mobile game, Rocket League Sideswipe, will be released later this year on iOS and Android devices. Players will be able to compete in 1v1 or 2v2 matches that last about two minutes per round. There seems to be a clear lifecycle for AAA games now. Step one is a free-to-play release on PC and console. Step two is a mobile release to broaden the game’s IP to a more casual and mainstream (and much larger) audience. Rocket League is following this pattern. No doubt it will be successful on mobile. It will be interesting to see if Epic makes any push for Rocket League mobile as an esport given the accessibility of the game and how easy it is to follow.
Opera announced that their gamer-focused Opera GX browser exceeded eight million active users last month. This signifies a growth of 250% year-over-year from February to now. There is a clear industry trend around creating new technology products or adapting existing products for the gamer audience. This is an important inflection point for the industry when the gamer audience is now seen as valuable enough to justify making specific products for it. Opera’s gamer browser is a clever example of this, and it has clearly found a sizable audience. I expect to see a lot more of this going forward.
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