Drop Fake secures $9 million in seed funding to build a multiplatform 4X strategy game


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Feb 7, 2020
Co-founder and CEO Katherine de Leon talks with GameDaily about the company's commitment to diversity and why the strategy genre is the right fit for the team.
This week, new remote-first development studio Drop Fake announced the closure of a $9 million seed funding round led by March Gaming, with contributions from FunPlus Ventures, CoutsideVC, 1Up Ventures, and more. The investment money will go towards the studio’s first game, which is an unannounced multiplayer, cross-platform 4X strategy title for mobile and PC.
Founded earlier this year, Drop Fake is led by CEO Katherine de León, a former VP at Electronic Arts. She established the studio with the goal of “fostering a diverse team and developing games for a diverse world,” according to an announcement. It’s a tenet baked into the business philosophy of the company, and one that de León said drives the team’s approach to video game development.
“Our company values have been shaped by the fact that over 50% of our staff are from underrepresented groups,” she told GameDaily. “Values like remote-first, quantitative culture, openness, supporting employee side hustles, and stock options for all are examples of how we’re building Drop Fake’s culture. These aren’t just benevolent ideals; they are also good business decisions.”
De León pointed to Drop Fake’s remote-first
working policy as a good way to promote diversity and inclusiveness in the greater games industry. She explained that the company will never have to ask prospective employees to uproot themselves and their families in order to work. More importantly, those for whom moving is simply not a possibility are not immediately disregarded for potential employment.

Of course, there are plenty of business benefits to such a policy as well:

“Remote-first also means we can recruit the best talent from anywhere in the world,” de León said.

Historically, diversity is something that the games industry has struggled with: in the IGDA’s most recent Developer Satisfaction Survey, 81% of respondents identified as white, and 71% identified as male. These statistics paint a rather homogeneous picture of the business, which results in a gaming landscape in desperate need of variety, de León said.

“Games look like their makers,” she explained. “If you want to make games for a diverse and global audience, you must start by building a diverse and global team.”

De León noted that while some progress has been made regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion in the industry, it has mostly been limited to the policy level, such as companies hiring DEI leads to audit a company’s efforts. However, true change occurs when people from underrepresented backgrounds start occupying leadership roles.

“There are precious few women, people of color, and queer leaders in highly visible positions,” de León said. “I am grateful to see more gaming companies and venture firms making explicit commitments to building and supporting diverse teams.”

Source: Drop Fake secures $9 million in seed funding to build a multiplatform 4X strategy game

What are your thoughts on drop fake receiving 9 million in seed funding? Do you think their team will develop a great strategy game or not really?

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