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Major capital for the makers of Marvels yet to be released MMORPG
Games are big money right now. But most of it is going to social games.
Migg33 raised $8.9 million this week, for mobile social games, Rocket Ninja raised $3.5 million for 3-D social games on Facebook, and Aurora Feint got $3 million. And this just represents those social gaming companies that raised their funds in the last month. Not to mention the funds given out to companies helping these games to monetize.
Other forms of games need some loving too, and Gazillion Entertainment just got a great big hug. The makers of online MMORPG's raised $60 million, with capital coming from Temasek Holdings. Temasek Holdings is a Singapore-based private equity firm, which seems to have a specific interest in entertainment based companies. Temasek Holdings also has investments in Bharti Airtel, and Indian telecom company, Tudou, a Chinese video site, and a China-based online gaming firm 9You.
San Mateo-based Gazillion, which only left stealth mode in March of 2009, but has been around since 2005, currently holds a license to make a Marvel themed MMORPG, and expects to release two titles under that license, one for adults and one for children. The license will last 10 years, but is hardly exclusive, since in September, Marvel teamed up with Smith & Tinker to make iPhone and Facebook games for the same franchise. Gazillion is also the maker of the Lego Universe MMORPG, as well as Jumpgate Evolution.
For those not familiar with an MMORPG, or massively mulitplayer online role playing game, they are an interactive fantasy game environment, where players are able to complete missions and interact with other live players, usually on their PC.
While there are a variety of free MMORPG's on the market, paid games like World of Warcraft, which recently hit a paying user milestone of 12 million monthly paid users, will present the biggest challenge for the companies newest product, since they are both working off of well established franchises.
Gazillion was not available for comment at this time.
(Image from Gazillion Games)
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Mig33 is a mobile download application that brings a potent mix of social networking, IM and VoIP features to your mobile phone. Any mobile that can run Java and connect to the Internet by GPRS, 1X or 3G, can use Mig33. Once installed users can do all the basic social networking things like create profiles, send photos, friending and messaging. They even have chat rooms, which is separate from their IM feature.
Their VoIP calling featuring is interesting. When users are logged in they can make VoIP calls to buddies on their list. Mig33 takes call requests and connects them with the specific buddy. Mig33 also has a SMS callback system where users can send an SMS to Mig33 with the number they want to call and Mig33 connects the call between the two parties.
Mig33 has call rates for all VoIP calls, unless you use their "VoIP Toolbar to VoIP Toolbar" which makes calls free. It should be noted that your mobile carrier still might charge you for all SMS, data transfers and talk time, so use at your own caution.