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W4 Games raises $15M to help push Godot Engine

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W4 Games, the company set up by Godot Engine veterans Juan Linietsky, Rémi Verschelde and Fabio Alessandrelli, along with veteran entrepreneur Nicola Farronato just received a rather large sum of funding.

Announced in a blog post today it mentions they've raised $15M in "Series A funding" from a mixture of sources including "OSS Capital and Naval Ravikant (AngelList and AirChat co-founder). Other investors include Justin Hoffman (Ex Elastic), Larry Augustin (Ex SugarCRM), Alex Atallah (Co-founder of OpenSea), Thomas Dohmke (CEO of GitHub), Diogo Mónica (Founder of Anchorage Digital), Scott Williamson (Ex GitLab) and more notable founders and executives in the commercial open-source ecosystem".

This is a pretty impressive sum to me, but this kind of money actually gets thrown around a lot. It's notable to us here at GamingOnLinux though since this money will go into pushing the free and open source Godot Engine.

What will they be using the funding for? W4 Games plan to more than double their staff over the next 18 months, and they will use all of it to "strengthen our role within the Godot ecosystem by supporting its open-source development and continuing to build products and services to facilitate Godot’s expansion, such as W4 Consoles (an approved middleware console porting solution for Godot games) and W4 Cloud (multi-tenant service to support millions of users)" along with expansion plans across North America, Europe, and Asia and a new Godot education program.

Naturally, these type of investments depend on W4 Games having a business plan for long-term profit, since the people and companies that invest will want a return on it. With W4 Games' work on getting Godot Engine supported fully on consoles (which they can't have in the main open source code due to the secrecy of console companies), and the increasing popularity of Godot — it should be interesting to see what happens.

What are your thoughts on this?

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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I am the owner of GamingOnLinux. After discovering Linux back in the days of Mandrake in 2003, I constantly came back to check on the progress of Linux until Ubuntu appeared on the scene and it helped me to really love it. You can reach me easily by emailing GamingOnLinux directly. Find me on Mastodon.
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17 comments
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ElectricPrism Dec 8, 2023
Quoting: RonDamonIt seems that the market is worries of the UE5 near-monopoly. This is good.

This is an excellent point. If I was a pushing 100 million in sales with a Unreal 5 game, it would be in my interest to keep Unreal Engine on their toes, and what better way than to sling a tax deduction at their competitor.

That way my money strengthens my interests that business partners (Epic) continue to behave fairly and don't try to pull some mickey mouse Unity BS like -- oof we're gonnna charge you every time your game is downloaded or installed like WTF?
Geamandura Dec 8, 2023
Everyone's happy acting like Godot is getting 15 mil in development funds. But this money is raised by the W4 commercial for profit company plugged into the Godot ecosystem. And they're doubling the headcount at this company who are developing closed source for profit components and services around Godot. There's no guarantee how much if any of the money goes straight to the open source Godot. Now I'm not saying it in a negative way, they earned it and I wish them the best, and they probably will allocate some funds for Godot itself because they sound like good guys. But this is not straight up Godot development money.


Last edited by Geamandura on 8 December 2023 at 8:52 am UTC
spacemonkey Dec 8, 2023
Quoting: Mountain ManWhat game currently use Godot?

Here is the full list of Steam games. There's also a graph that shows the increase in popularity.
https://steamdb.info/tech/Engine/Godot/
robertosf92 Dec 8, 2023
Quoting: GeamanduraEveryone's happy acting like Godot is getting 15 mil in development funds. But this money is raised by the W4 commercial for profit company plugged into the Godot ecosystem. And they're doubling the headcount at this company who are developing closed source for profit components and services around Godot. There's no guarantee how much if any of the money goes straight to the open source Godot. Now I'm not saying it in a negative way, they earned it and I wish them the best, and they probably will allocate some funds for Godot itself because they sound like good guys. But this is not straight up Godot development money.

Not all money will go into Godot, but it might help Godot indirectly, by people using it more because of the services W4 provides.

They keep things proprietary because of the TOS of the console makers, it's not because they're trying to profit off Godot in some way (they're the original developers after all).

This is not a zero-sum game, the games made with Godot are still proprietary, after all. If you can find a market niche to raise money which helps Godot (and it's in your interest anyways because the more people use Godot, the more potential clients you may have), I see it as a win-win in the current situation, tbh
elmapul Dec 9, 2023
Quoting: ShmerlSecrecy of console companies is such a total dinosaur of an idea.

It would be nice for Godot to compete with the likes of Unreal Engine.

like it or not its a busines model that f***ing work for then, the day things like the steam deck start to eating up their marketshare will be the day they change their mind.
or not really, even valve have their NDA stuff, not to mention anything with DRM has.
elmapul Dec 9, 2023
i think a big chunk of that money will go to console support, wich means we wont see any of it on the opensource version of godot for a while, but that will turn into more mooney being made by the users wich will turn into more investment (hopefully) in the engine
neolith Dec 11, 2023
Quoting: Mountain ManWhat game currently use Godot?
The YouTube channel StayAtHomeDev has a weekly feature called "This Week In Godot" showing of Godot games:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLEHvj4yeNfeHArSU6U2a715ssJYYCnKCg
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