Gaming platforms have earned serious clout with investors in recent years. Add in the VC excitement surrounding collaboration tools and it's no surprised there's interest in backing another gaming chat app.
Guilded is creating a chat platform designed for competitive gaming and esports that focuses heavily on keeping gamers organized and connected with their teams.
The startup's sell is that Discord (currently valued at $2 billion) has moved too broadly in recent years and that their feature set isn't actually focused on what competitive gamers are looking for, forcing them to turn to spreadsheets and form submissions when they're looking to get serious about organization.
"Discord is really great for a lot of communities, but we’re building chat specifically for gamers," Guilded CEO Eli Brown told TechCrunch.
Guilded just announced that they've raised $7 million in Series A funding led by Matrix Partners. Initialized Capital, Susa Ventures and Sterling.VC also participated in the deal. Guilded was in Y Combinator's S17 class.
Guilded is a bit more tightly organized than Discord, with the focus more dialed in on teams and server-based structures. The deep integration of scheduling and calendars is perhaps the biggest differentiation of the platform.
In addition to text chat, users can create inline events, upload documents and post screen captures as well. You can fire up the app while you're actually playing a game and use voice chat to communicate with your server. Guilded currently supports more than 400 titles.
As with any new communications tool, Guilded's challenge will be chipping away at competing products, namely Discord, and achieving a critical mass of users and servers that can self-sustain moving forward.
Looking ahead, the platform is looking to get deeper into facilitating gameplay. Users can already browse through public servers to immediately join or apply to be accepted to a private server and these servers can be further broken down into individual groups or channels. Guilded is building out a tournaments feature to match servers with similar skill levels to each other, a feature that's launching in the coming months.