Game Jolt raises $2.6M to expand social platform for Gen Z gamers
Game Jolt has raised $2.6 million to expand its social platform where millions of Gen Z gamers and creators share and discover content around their favorite video games.
The funding round marks a big milestone for a company that has come a long way and is notable for having a female CEO and husband-and-wife leadership.
The Seattle-based company was started David DeCarmine in 2002, back when he was 14 in New York. A self-taught programmer, he created Game Jolt (under a different name) as a place where gamers could discover and play indie games and enjoy each other’s company in forums and chat rooms. It grew slowly.
“Back then, it was just a bunch of hobbyists making games,” said CEO Yaprak DeCarmine in an interview with GamesBeat. “It really started as kind of side passion project. But here we are. Game Jolt has had so much growth since then.”
Now Game Jolt has evolved into a collection of more than 40,000 communities started by gamers, and its largest communities exceed 500,000 people. Overall, the number of users is in the millions. But the communities aren’t what you would expect based on the popularity of games. For instance, Five Nights at Freddy’s has a much larger community than Call of Duty: Warzone.
The company has built internal tools for moderation with enough automation that the team can moderate millions of people coming in every month. Users can report offensive content and the company can deal with it. The company is also investing in machine learning.
Their mission is to evolve and become something like the TikTok for gamers. Game Jolt will use the capital to build in-app live streaming, discoverability, and monetization for its game-based content creators. It’s very different from some of the other gamer communities like Discord, Twitch, Reddit, and others.