Animoca Brands joins forces with Untamed Planet, the Nature gaming startup
Untamed Planet completes $24.3M Series A funding led by Animoca Brands; nWay to build 3D immersive nature metaverse and NFTs
05 May 2022: Animoca Brands, the company advancing digital property rights for gaming and the metaverse, has invested in and partnered with Untamed Planet, the gaming company inspired by nature with a mission to protect the wild. As part of the partnership, Untamed Planet and Animoca Brands will develop and publish Untamed Metaverse, a major upcoming game to benefit nature conservation efforts.
Untamed Planet has completed a US$24.3 million Series A funding led by Animoca Brands. Previously, Untamed Planet received seed funding from Afterpay co-founder Nick Molnar. The new funding will support the development of Untamed Metaverse, an immersive metaverse experience in partnership with Animoca Brands and its subsidiary nWay.
Untamed Metaverse is a 3D immersive experience in which players will be able to explore a digital twin of the world’s most amazing wild landscapes, participate in quests, collect NFT assets, and form communities passionate about protecting Nature, all of which will directly benefit nature conservation efforts in the real world.
Untamed Planet is digitizing the world’s most amazing wildlife ecosystems and creating fun, nature-based experiences through which engagement in the digital world directly benefits conservation in the real world. The company uses Web3 technology to build sustainable sources of donations for Nature while providing play-to-earn and play-to-protect opportunities for Untamed Planet community members.
Untamed Planet’s primary conservation partner is WildArk, a registered non-profit organization that works with dozens of other organizations worldwide to support community-led conservation efforts and secure space for wildlife and biodiversity.
Sustainability and conservation
Untamed Planet is committed to environmental sustainability and to following best-practice technology and protocols in environmental and social impact. All blockchain projects undertaken by Untamed Planet, including Untamed Metaverse, will prioritize energy efficiency and sustainability.
The first NFT collection from Untamed Planet will be minted on Solana, a Proof of Stake (PoS) protocol with high energy efficiency. On average, one transaction on Solana uses less energy than three Google searches; minting an NFT on Solana uses less than a third of the energy of keeping a LED light on for one hour, and less than a quarter of the energy required to charge an iPhone 13 (see: Solana’s Energy Use Report: March 2022).
A core element of Untamed Planet’s mission is its commitment to “50% profit share for Nature”, whereby the company donates, invests, or distributes a minimum of half of each project’s profits to on the ground conservation initiatives and the local communities supporting them. Some projects within the Untamed Planet ecosystem allot over 50% and up to 100% of all proceeds to conservation.
Coined “play-to-protect”, this model was successfully tested in Untamed Planet’s first game, built on the Roblox platform, which has generated 30 million plays since launch in early 2021. Using the proceeds from in-game transactions, the game has already funded the adoption of a Black Rhino calf in Kenya and supported rangers protecting the Eastern Lowland Gorillas of Virunga National Park in Congo.
David Yarrow NFT drop
The first collaboration by Animoca Brands and Untamed Planet is an NFT collection of animal avatars based on the work of world-renowned photographer David Yarrow, who has donated six of his original wildlife photos. The NFTs will go on sale in May and all proceeds will be donated to wildlife conservation efforts. CNN recently profiled the work of David Yarrow.
Yat Siu, the co-founder and executive chairman of Animoca Brands, commented: “We are extremely proud to work with Untamed Planet to support a project that is both a good cause and an extremely promising open metaverse development. We look forward to advancing the ways in which technology can drive nature conservation.”
Scott Bandy, studio head of Untamed Planet, commented: “What excites me about the Untamed Planet mission is the opportunity to merge mainstream gaming with the new prospects that Web3 enables for digital ownership by players in order to drive real-world conservation - this project is epic. We couldn’t have hoped for better partners than Animoca Brands and nWay.”
About Untamed Planet
Untamed Planet was founded in 2020 to pioneer a new conservation model that creates value for Nature, drawing inspiration from the ecosystems, animals, and communities that make up the wild parts of our planet. We are a passionate group of entrepreneurs, conservationists, game developers, and artists. Our mission is to utilize the opportunities provided by Web3 technology to develop fun, nature-based games that generate funding to drive conservation benefits. Untamed Planet operates two divisions: Untamed Studios, which focuses on game development, and Untamed Labs, which drives NFT projects and conservation efforts. The official Untamed Planet whitepaper will be available in Q3 2022.
nWay, a subsidiary of Animoca Brands, is a San Francisco-based developer, publisher and tech platform for play-to-earn (P2E) games across mobile, PC, and consoles. nWay’s P2E games platform, nWayPlay, enables fast development, and operations of P2E games with easy on-ramp and off-ramp features. The company has a strong track record of developing AAA quality games on mobile and on console, including Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid, Power Rangers: Legacy Wars, and ChronoBlade. nWay is composed of leading developers and senior executives previously at Sony, LucasArts, EA, Ubisoft, Capcom, Bandai Namco, Xbox, Warner Bros., Konami, Kabam, Pocket Gems, Zynga, Glu, Jam City, and Machine Zone. The team has collectively contributed to over a dozen hits, including Marvel Contest of Champions, the Injustice series, Star Wars: the Force Unleashed, Game of War, and Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery. For more information visit www.nway.com.
About Animoca Brands
Animoca Brands, a Deloitte Tech Fast winner and ranked in the Financial Times list of High Growth Companies Asia-Pacific 2021, is a leader in digital entertainment, blockchain, and gamification that is working to advance digital property rights. It develops and publishes a broad portfolio of products including the REVV token and SAND token; original games including The Sandbox, Crazy Kings, and Crazy Defense Heroes; and products utilizing popular intellectual properties including Disney, WWE, Snoop Dogg, The Walking Dead, Power Rangers, MotoGP™, and Formula E. The company has multiple subsidiaries, including The Sandbox, Blowfish Studios, Quidd, GAMEE, nWay, Pixowl, Bondly, Lympo, Grease Monkey Games, and Eden Games. Animoca Brands has a growing portfolio of more than 170 investments in NFT-related companies and decentralized projects that are contributing to building the open metaverse, including Axie Infinity, OpenSea, Dapper Labs (NBA Top Shot), Yield Guild Games, Harmony, Alien Worlds, Star Atlas, and others. For more information visit www.animocabrands.com or follow on Twitter or Facebook.
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All screenshots are from the Untamed Metaverse demo build - final product may vary