Raph Koster is making a new MMO, and he's already raised quite a bit of seed money to do so. The Ultima Online and Star Wars Galaxies designer has started Playable Worlds, a new game company, to create the next great sandbox MMORPG.
Announced via a press release this morning, Playable Worlds has raised $2.7 million in seed funding, let by BITKRAFT Esports Ventures, 1UP Ventures and what they call "several game industry angel investors." The team is made up of online game devs from the likes of Disney, Marvel, Sony Online Entertainment and more.
Playable Worlds is building an online world where a broad range of players can find a home, whether their preferred playstyle is exploring, adventuring, socializing, crafting, or player versus player combat. These diverse communities can each play the game in their own way, or cross over with one another, delivering diverse play experience and enriching the world. Bringing together proven features from some of the world’s most popular games in a unique combination that hasn’t been seen before, the team is developing a broadly appealing and novel experience that leverages modern cloud architecture, simulation, and AI. The funding will be used to scale the expert team and accelerate product development.
It'll be interesting to see where Raph and his company take this. Both Ultima Online and Star Wars Galaxies are revered MMOs in their own right with massive following chomping at the bit for a game like those again. Whether the team calls back to previous adventures, creates something new or a mixture of the two, Playable Worlds looks like a studio to keep your eye on in the future.