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Lumi Interactive announced a seed investment of $6.75 million, led by a16z. 1Up Ventures, Galileo Ventures and Heracles Capital also participated in the round. Double Loop Games boss Emily Greer also joins as an angel investor.
The oversubscribed seed round is the largest venture investment in a female-founded game studio in Australia. Studio is the developer behind Kinder Worldfree mobile The game allows players to take care of virtual houseplants by performing mindfulness tasks in the real world.
James Gwertzman of a16z said: “Lumi are entering a rapidly growing and much-needed category of their own. “Here, the goal is not to achieve or compete, but to slow down, step back, and have some necessary mental health time.”
Lumi Interactive will use this money to pursue its mission to make the world a better place. It plans to grow its development team and scale Kinder World for a major global launch. The studio wants to bring the Kinder World experience to more platforms, both online and offline.
So what is Kinder World, and what is ‘crowdhealing’?
Kinder World requires players to engage in evidence-based self-care activities. Lumi Interactive employs a full-time health researcher, Dr. Hannah C. Gunderman, whose job is to inform about various activities in the game. The entire game is based on her concept of ‘community healing’ and once players take care of their own emotional health, they gently reach out to other players.
The idea is that these ‘kind’ acts will improve both the happiness of individual players and, at the same time, the well-being of the community as a whole.
“The past few years have not been good,” Lumi Interactive boss Lauren Clinnick said in a statement to GamesBeat. “But even in the depths of Melbourne’s lengthy incarceration, my small group has seen how everyday acts of kindness, towards themselves and others, can make the world a place of death. How is it more economical?”
Kinder World has been wildly successful on TikTok, attracting a predominantly female and non-binary audience. Lumi Interactive is leveraging the rise in popularity to work with fans in game development. Thanks to their input, Lumi Interactive can make sure the game doesn’t just feel like a pointless hectic business.
Kinder World is available on iOS and Androidand is expecting a full launch by the end of 2022.
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