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Game Changer? Gaming Veterans Join Forces to Create Ultra Platform

The Estonian-based PC gaming company Ultra announced on Wednesday that it is building a blockchain-powered gaming marketplace. Executives on the Ultra project include former Asia vice president and creator of many new platforms for Unity Technologies, John Goodale; director of strategic insights at Magic Leap; Wallace Poulter, former product manager at Atari; Jenna Seiden, former head of content development and partnerships at Xbox and Chris Saad, former head of product at Uber.

Ultra stated that its platform will support a variety of game genres, including free-to-play, premium games, eSports and single-player games. It claims the platform will allow developers to earn 21 percent more on their sales revenue, providing access to a range of new revenue opportunities for both developers and gamers alike.

Developers using Steam, Google, and the Apple app stores are having an increasingly difficult time selling their software outside of these walled gardens, which results in large commission fees and loss of control over their own customers, Ultra explained.

“Additionally, as the catalogue of games has grown dramatically in recent years, largely due to the market leader Steam’s service offering, this oversaturation further inhibits developers from reaching their audiences,” the company added. “Likewise, for gamers themselves, discovering the right game for them has become more difficult because of the sheer quantity of games available. The majority of gamers with purchasing power aren’t aware of the games available to them, other than the ones that have been published on Steam.”

Ultra contended that its blockchain platform aims to end these “monopolistic practices” by providing effective marketing tools, introducing new revenue streams, and establishing tokens for developers and platform users. Ultra added that its use of smart contracts also means that developers can now receive an instant payout to recycle back into their own businesses, combating tedious delays typically experienced when dealing with traditional financial institutions.

Ken Silva
Ken Silva is a journalist who covers the financial services industry in the Cayman Islands and the British Virgin Islands.
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