Dorian acquires otome game developer Nix Hydra
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Social storytelling platform Dorian has acquired Nix Hydra, a developer of interactive fiction like “otome” games.
Dorian will take on a few Nix Hydra employees with their flagship titles, Fictional and The Arcana: A Mystic Romance, which was named by Pocket Gamer as one of the best otome-style games of 2022. They are popular non-gender romance games in Japan — and elsewhere too.
That’s why Dorian acquired the games and interactive platform, as it builds a platform for creators, which embraces the new and changing landscape of entertainment by connecting fans and independent creators to popular intellectual properties, features of monetization and no-code authoring tools.
“Our ambition is to become the largest game creation and streaming platform for female creators and other underrepresented groups,” Dorian CEO Julia Palatovska said in an interview with GamesBeat. “Nix Hydra really fits into Dorian’s most popular and successful content, so it has a very strong affinity with the community we’re building and the content we’re building.
The company has also expanded its partnerships, technology, and community teams with Nix Hydra members and new recruits.
“With gaming as the biggest and fastest growing form of entertainment today, and major streaming giants losing subscribers to creator-focused platforms like TikTok and Twitch, the message is clear: change. big and bold are coming to the landscape of content creation and consumption,” said Palatovska.
Like Dorian, Nix Hydra is a company founded by women, with over six million downloads of its apps. Dorian pursues a vision to empower underrepresented communities through interactive games and storytelling, Palatovska said.
Fans of otome games, comics, and webtoons have built highly engaged fan communities around Fictional and Arcana, which stand out for their well-developed characters and striking visuals. Together, Fictional and The Arcana have over 300 art-filled episodes.
“They all fit perfectly into our strategy. They have a very strong community built around these IPs and in fact they are some of the best otome games,” Palatovska said. “It’s fantastic for the streaming side of the Dorian platform, as we’re experimenting with different types of creators, and cosplayers are definitely the most popular among streamers right now.”
Palatovska said Nix Hydra is also known for its large non-binary audience, as its stories aren’t always gendered. Nix Hydra was founded by Lina Chen and Naomi Ladizinsky, two Yale University graduates who were roommates. They raised $5 million in 2014 to create games for women. They had a number of successes, but eventually the business shrank and the founders left a few years ago.
Dorian will bring these episodes of content from Fictional – an anthology app that houses multiple intellectual properties – and Arcana to his platform, and will work with Nix Hydra’s highly engaged fan community to expand the canon and explore new relationships with characters. This means Dorian is embracing user-generated content (UGC), which happens to be a hot topic at our GamesBeat Summit Next 2022 event on October 25-26 in San Francisco.
Now these fans and the broader Dorian audience will not only be able to access Nix Hydra titles on Dorian, but they will also be able to create fan fiction and spin-off stories using the beautiful and iconic art and lore of the original IPs.
In addition to no-code creation, the platform offers game monetization features, including full access to game performance data and rapid iteration tools – all instantly available to anyone who joins. Dorian’s unique live-streaming feature gives creators the power to promote their stories, grow their following, and connect with the fans most likely to support them.
With the addition of Nix Hydra IPs, Dorian will allow Arcana’s huge cosplay community (which has over 300 million views on TikTok) to play iconic characters live, while making decisions with other fans.
Dorian wants to enable the millions of creators of fiction and non-technical comics to turn their stories into games and monetize them, so the company has expanded the team with new executives with experience in some of the best platforms. forms of creators and game companies. on the market.
New team members include Head of Creator Partnerships I-Yana Tucker, formerly Director of Creator Management at Wattpad/Webtoon; lead software architect Alex Hall, co-founder and former CTO of interactive storytelling platform Tales; and Head of Strategic Partnerships Liz Tingue, who led original and IP development at Episode (Pocket Gems) and Spotlight (Crazy Maple Studio).
Two members of the Nix Hydra team will also join Dorian – community manager Alex Danino and lead artist Gabriella Rossetti, who will play roles in the Fictitious and Arcana integration. Dorian is uniquely positioned to realize his vision: to change the landscape of game creation and live streaming for new audiences that have historically been excluded from the gaming industry, Palatovska said.
In Dorian’s streams, streamers can ask the public to vote in real time on the decisions streamers make as players. This was inspired in part by the scripted Twitch show Artificial. Dorian shares revenue with streamers, and if someone contributes to the stream, that person can also get paid.
“So we solved this problem of collaboration between game creators and streamers,” she said.
“Because Dorian has built a very collaborative environment where you can work with others on your games, you can work with streamers, you can work with artists, and you can work with our community,” Palatovska said. “I think the insider community will be thrilled to have this opportunity to produce official fanfiction and we plan to work with the Nix Hydra community.”
Dorian has over 300 creators already generating revenue on the platform using its virtual currency.
Dorian has about 20 people, mostly in San Francisco. The company raised $19 million.
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