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More alpha-male investors throw money after tournament gaming

By on May 18, 2010

Titan Gaming just has just raised $1m from a bunch of angels for its tournament gaming platform.

I am deeply sceptical about this model for hardcore gamers. The past is littered with tournament gaming failures such as, Kwari and Prizefight.

Titan Platform screenshot

Broadly speaking, all investors are hyper-competitive alpha-types (whether male or female) and they assume that all gamers are hyper-competitive too.

This is not true. Farmville is not about competition. Sure, some people play to beat their friends. But others play to socialise, to nurture, to build community or because they feel social obligations to keep playing.

But it’s not about competition.

Tom Jubert put it well over at the GameShadow blog when went bust, saying:

“Gambling works because it’s based on luck. no matter how aware of the growing hole in our pockets, we keep playing because were addicted. We’re addicted to the chance we might win big with the next set of cards.

In an FPS, as some investors may not realise, success if heavily based on skill. That means if you’re a loser, you’re a loser – there’s no chance of ever making it big. As a result, the weaker players don’t bother, while the stronger have no one to compete against.”

Companies have had more success in the skill-based casual gaming camp (just look at and GameDuell), but has struggled in the hardcore market.

I wish the team at Titan well, but I fear that they are in for a rocky ride.

About Nicholas Lovell

Nicholas is the founder of Gamesbrief, a blog dedicated to the business of games. It aims to be informative, authoritative and above all helpful to developers grappling with business strategy. He is the author of a growing list of books about making money in the games industry and other digital media, including How to Publish a Game and Design Rules for Free-to-Play Games, and Penguin-published title The Curve: