8 Jan — 14 Jan / 2024

Weekly News Digest #2


# of announced deals
announced deals’ size
# of closed deals

Second Dinner Studios has raised $100m


Marvel Snap

Second Dinner Studios has raised $100m

US-based games developer Second Dinner Studios has raised $100m in a Series B funding round led by Griffin Gaming Partners.

In 2019, a year after it was founded, the company raised $30m in a funding round from Chinese gaming giant NetEase (NASDAQ: NTES), which remains one of the studio’s shareholders. Along with the funding, Second Dinner Studios made a deal with Marvel.

This deal paved the path to Second Dinner’s hit, a collectible card game Marvel Snap for mobile and PC. According to the press release, launched in Oct’22, Marvel Snap has already brought over $200m in Revenues and 22 million downloads.

If we look at, it can be seen the game attracted players almost immediately after its launch, though its peak quickly decreased from ~8 million downloads to ~3 million after four months and then plateaued at around 1 million downloads a month in Q2’23. The Revenue, however, didn’t show such a drastic decline: from $22m in Dec’23 to a stable ~$11m a month starting from Q2’23. All this indicates that the game managed to find its core audience that keeps playing (and spending) for a long time. In Dec’23, Marvel Snap’s Revenue per download ratio was 15.4x, another proof of the game’s successful monetization. Marvel SnapSource: Marvel Snap Downloads (left) and Revenue (right)

The title is being published globally by Nuverse, a Chinese entertainment giant Bytedance gaming subsidiary. Recently, it’s been confirmed that the TikTok owner plans to sell Nuverse, with Tencent (SEHK: 700) among its potential buyers.

Although the press release date is Jan’24, the deal occurred in Q3’23. Pitchbook was the first to announce the deal. Many market reports, including our Global Gaming Deals Activity Report Q1-Q3’23, reflected the news.

The new round of Second Dinner makes the company one of the few receiving significant Late-stage investments lately. For instance, in 2023, only Candivore and VSPN managed to raise $100m and $265m, respectively, with every other deal being smaller.

The story of the Late-stage investment decline can be partially explained by ascending interest rates, a weaker exit environment, lower valuations compared to those of 2021-2022 and a focus on financials and internal optimization on the investor side.

So, how do you reach success during these challenging times? For Second Dinner it is a combination of the experienced founding team, accomplished investor and publisher, and a well-known franchise. But the main thing is that it is a great game that was able to innovate and build on the best practices of the genre. To understand how the game reached this success and learn more about its secret sauce, we highly recommend you read the detailed analysis written by our friends from Deconstructor of Fun.

We want to thank MGVC, Taylor Wessing, and Xsolla for supporting this digest.

Frame 482023



US-based technology firm Luma AI has raised $43m in a Series B funding round led by Andreessen Horowitz, bringing its valuation between $200m and $300m. The company is primarily known for its app, allowing users to create 3D models by scanning objects with a phone camera. The funds will be utilized to propel Luma’s evolution into a comprehensive generative AI platform, with a focus on creating advanced 3D models and further development of Genie, the company’s text-to-3D model project.

US-based web3 game developer ArenaX Labs has raised $6m in a funding round led by Framework VenturesSevenX VenturesFunPlus, and Moore Strategic Ventures. The funds will be utilized to develop a PvP fighting game AI Arena with the help of AI technology. The game allows users to create and train AI-powered characters. The company plans to release the F2P game in beta later this year, aiming to provide an immersive understanding of AI through competitive gameplay.

Turkey-based game startup Lokum Games has raised $1m (₺33m) in a funding round led by Boğaziçi Ventures and APY Ventures. Other participants include Soner Çaşur, Mustafa Kamil Ağel, and Kamer Dikran Alyanakyan. The fund will propel the studio’s FPS titles Zula and Zula Mobile globally, with plans to create an MMO FPS title under the Zula brand.

Saudi Arabia-based gaming startup has raised $0.43m in a pre-Seed funding round led by angel investors. Founded in 2022, is a gaming platform for creating teams, live streaming, and tournament organization. The funds will be utilized to develop the platform further, expand its user base, and introduce new features.

Singapore-based web3 gaming platform Matr1x has raised an undisclosed sum in a funding round from OKX Ventures, contributing to the approximately $20m raised by the studio from various venture capital firms before. Matr1x is developing Matr1x Fire, a cyberpunk-themed shooting game with a battle royale mode, integrating NFTs for unique experiences. The investment will primarily go to enhancing the battle royale aspect of Matr1x Fire, scheduled for launch in Q1’24.