This free cloud gaming service, which has raised 15 million euros, has 2 million users and will open its doors to more modern indie games.
Name change for free cloud gaming service Piepacker. Two years after its creation, this French startup founded by Facebook and Twitch alumni is Jam.gg and launches new social features when you play against other netizens in retro video games like Metal Slug, Windjammers or The King of Fighters. “Jam users who play together are logged in twice, and retention is four times betterco-founder Benjamin Devian notes.
Jam wants to replicate the arcade spirit of the past by encouraging users to play against and chat with strangers. But he intends to do so tactfully. her jobpublic halls» Divided into several categories depending on the mood of the player. Want to chat about a game? Or, on the contrary, to play without feeling obligated to chat with your opponent? There will be dedicated lounges, as well as designated spaces for those in a competitive mood.
The service allows players to see each other via their webcam and chat in writing or by voice. “But we don’t want to turn into ChatrouletteBenjamin Devian continues, “A service where non-consensual sexual performances are frequent. When strangers play together, their faces will be replaced with augmented reality filters and the rest of the body will be hidden to avoid slipping.”Their faces will appear on the screen only if all players agree.» Supervision of clerical exchanges will be provided by Bodyguard technology.
Less than a year after launching the service, Jam.gg has 2 million subscribers and 500,000 monthly active users. “This number is growing by 20% every month, and I think we’re expecting 1 million players per month this summer“Growth driven by Brazil,” continues the co-founder.Because our service works even on small connections. We are testing our new features in this market“.
The arrival of modern games
Today’s Jam catalog is centered around games from the 80s and 90s: The King of Fighters, Earthworm Jim, Worms, Samurai Shodown…”But you don’t become a unicorn with retroBenjamin Devian smiles. “Modern games are a big challenge for us.The startup convinced publisher Team17 to distribute the latest games on the platform Overcooked (2016) and Get out (2020), in which players must work together to run a restaurant kitchen or move a house. It will be playable for free, just like indie games Eggnogg + (2017) and Hidden in plain sight (2011).
But the startup wants to go further and wants to become a sales platform for indie games – discussions are underway about titles that have been a hit in recent years. “Cloud gaming is rarely profitable today because the technical costs are high. But we have patented a technology that significantly reduces the size of a video stream by cutting it into several small packets. This greatly reduces costs for us and opens up a complete economic model‘, explains Benjamin Devian. The access to paid games will also allow unblocking discussions with game publishers who do not want their work to be freely available.
Finally, Jam will allow you to broadcast your game on Twitch with one click but also unlock monetization options. “The viewer will be able to challenge the streaming device by paying to play against it. Viewers can also change the current game by showing off new enemies or special things, again by paying a small amount. 70% of the money spent will go to the creatorThe rest will go to Jam, unless the startup has an agreement with the video game publisher. In this case, the remaining amount will be shared equally between the two parties.
The startup now has about sixty employees. This number could rise to 100 or even 150 employees in 2023 thanks to a large fundraising under discussion. At the end of 2021, Jam has already received 15 million euros from the Lego group.