Aussie-founded play-to-earn game SolChicks raises $77m, to launch mini-game next month
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An Australian-founded play-to-earn blockchain gaming company started just September has already raised $77 million from venture capital and institutional investment funds, as well as more than 100 staff.
SolChicks is an upcoming fantasy role-playing game powered by the high-speed Solana blockchain, scheduled for a mini-game release at the end of March, an “alpha” release in April and an official release in September.
It’s the brainchild of two Australian finance graduates, chief executive William Wu of Shanghai and chief operating officer Lewis Grafton of Sydney, who have quickly grown SolChicks into a game studio with two other titles. The Catheon Gaming team is based mostly in Australia, with additional staff in Hong Kong, Singapore the UK and US.
Wu, a former investment professional at Oaktree Capital Management in Hong Kong, said that SolChicks is designed to be a disrupter to the crypto gaming space.
“The team at SolChicks firmly believe that the games of tomorrow will be managed in a decentralized fashion, free from corporate censorship and ridiculous play-to-win models,” he said.
“Our parent company, Catheon Gaming, aims to bring this model to other games – both blockchain-based and traditional titles. We hope to create something which will disrupt the gaming industry as we currently know it and are proud to be at the forefront of pushing the boundaries of what is possible.”
Catheon’s other games are Seoul Stars, a “sing-to-earn” game endorsed by K-pop stars, and Angrymals, a player-versus-player fortress defence strategy mobile game inspired by Angry Birds and Worms.
But SolChicks is the flagship – said to be similar to traditional RPG gaming titles like Darkest Dungeon or Diablo, except that the players are “cute chicken characters” that can be bought and sold as NFTs on Solana.
There’s also a $CHICKS token that Coinmarketcap has listed as the No. 1146 crypto with a circulating market cap of US$5.7 million, although only three per cent of its supply is in circulation. $CHICKS’ fully diluted market cap is said to be US$193.8 million.
The token launch on Raydium last December was in such demand that it caused the entire Solana blockchain to experience performance issues, according to Solana co-founder Raj Gokal. Since then demand for the token has cooled, although that’s true for the entire crypto space.
SolChicks has over 350,000 followers on Twitter and says its community consists of 700,000 across 20 countries, amassed in just four short months.
Grafton said that the crypto-gaming sector is growing faster than anyone could have imaging and SolChicks is an example of the immense appetite for this fluid, fun and interactive way to invest in the metaverse.
“We are firm believers that Solana will become the leading blockchain, given Ethereum’s issues regarding scaling capability and network congestion,” he said.