Racing game studio Tiny Digital Factory is to confirm a funding round for its new NFT-powered game Infinite Drive soon, says CEO Stéphane Baudet.
The GT Manager and F1 Mobile Racing maker has already partnered with Animoca Brands on two games – F1 Delta Time and Revv Racing – so it seems like a safe bet that the prolific blockchain game investor will be involved in Tiny Digital Factory’s forthcoming raise. Baudet was also previously co-founder and CEO of Eden Games, which was acquired by Animoca in April.
“We’re in the process of doing a series A investment. But we haven’t announced our partners yet,” Baudet tells us.
The funding will be used to help launch Infinite Drive, an open world racer with an NFT-based car collecting element.
“The idea overall is to shift from traditional free to play, and try to benefit from web3 and blockchain without being an investment kind of game,” Baudet tells us. “We’d really like to keep focused on the game, which is what we do as a company, more than blockchain.”
Those who do choose to buy cars as NFTs in Infinite Drive will be able to trade them and rent them out to other players, as well as earn currency by driving. So the game is being pitched as a ‘race to earn’ game.
“We have a lot of players in the community that, you know, don’t have that driving skill or are just there for the ‘race to earn’ aspect. They just want to collect cars, share those cars with people and gather into clubs and just drive,” says Baudet. “And that kind of audience is more like the audience we used to have in Test Drive Unlimited or what Microsoft has in Forza Horizon. It’s more likely for people to connect and to enjoy driving cars and discussing cars.”
So while the game does have competitive modes, it is also being created to be a place “where people get to drive their cars without the stress of competition,” he says.
And the hope is that those blockchain elements might encourage players of games like Real Racing to switch over to Infinite Drive.
“For those who invest, you know, 50 or 100 Euros in Real Racing, maybe they’ll say okay, well, I will invest that same kind of money in Infinite Drive because in exchange, I will get an NFT that is tradeable outside and then there’s also that play to earn aspect, so I may have some of my money back.”
Baudet adds that Infinite Drive will be out in closed alpha this summer, with global launch “probably around October or November.”