Pixel metaverse NFT game Worldwide Webb receives $10M from Pantera

Pixel art-based metaverse NFT game Worldwide Webb announced yesterday that it had raised $10 million in funding for future expansion. The fundraising was led by Pantera Capital, marking its first external financing round.

Since Worldwide Webb’s first build came out in November 2021, its 16-bit style pixel aesthetic has helped it stand out from competitors. Though many Metaverse games utilize 3D graphics to visualize their setting, Worldwide Webb’s massive online multiplayer is set entirely in a retro-themed world with pixel art of famous Ethereum-based NFT avatars.

The game has since amassed over 100 thousand all-time players, selling over $40 million in secondary sales alone. Pantera investment associate Sehaj Singh noted that Worldwide Webb’s execution and performance had helped “enhance engagement and community building” in the NFT communities.

“Worldwide Webb bridges the gap between traditional gaming and NFT communities via an ever-expanding catalog of browser-based mini-games, where every player can leverage a unique identity in the form of an NFT,” Singh said.

Thomas Webb, the creator of the game, explained that the $10 million funding would go into employing more talent in the development team, expanding the original game and adding more NFT brands to the title.

“We’ve been moving fast and we’ve been shipping product. But for us, it’s a case of wanting to move faster. We want to build faster, and we want to innovate faster,” Webb said.

Future developments

Worldwide Webb debuted its early development product in 2020 before releasing its first official build in 2021. Since then, the team has grown to 30 individuals. Its collection has adopted numerous NFT avatars, including CryptoPunks, Doodles, Cool Cats and the famous Bored Ape Yacht Club.

The game’s premise revolves around using video games as “a way for people to connect with one another through shared experiences” in a futuristic setting.

The game offers NFT real estate via customizable digital apartments, which trade for over $80 million in volume. Landholders contribute to the game’s economy by hosting businesses and stations offering material for players to advance.

While much of Worldwide Webb’s assets and gameplay are complete, it does not currently have a player-versus-player (PvP) mode. Content in the game revolves more around dungeon crawling and boss raids.

However, the Worldwide Webb development team plans to release a competitive mode called Blockbusterz, which will allow teams of players to pit their virtual avatars against one another. The PvP mode promises to bring famous NFT avatars into the fighting ring. A short demo was released alongside the $10 million funding announcement.

Further down the pipeline, Webb will expand the game’s playstyle and narrative. He said older games like RuneScape inspire his plans and will likely hire more experienced developers to build the world.

Brand expansion is also on Webb’s development list for Worldwide Webb’s future. The team aims to invite more IPs into the game through “meaningful in-game features such as quests, boss fights, items and more.”

Webb also expressed his interest in developing applications for iOS and Android devices, provided that Apple and Google become more supportive of Web3 technologies. However, obstacles like Apple’s 30 percent NFT tax may stand in the way of mobile development for some time.