Please welcome Shotcall, an interactive gaming platform connecting fans and their favorite gamers
Cofounders: Thomas Gentle, Gordon Li, and Riley Auten
The problem: Gaming has become an integral part of our lives, bolstered by advancements in tech and accelerated by the pandemic. Improvements around audio and cross platform multiplayer have laid the foundation for better social games like Fortnite and Roblox, while others like Animal Crossing and Among Us have entered the mainstream thanks to professional creators, politicians, celebrities and more. But until now, the gaming ecosystem has missed a key component to tie it all together: the infrastructure for fans to easily connect and play alongside their favorite gamers. At the same time, those creators are continually seeking avenues to monetize their craft. The opportunity has emerged to build a community and marketplace that meets the needs of both groups.
Shotcall’s solution: Shotcall is an interactive esports gaming platform and marketplace designed to connect content creators around the world with their fans through popular video games including Fortnite, Valorant, and more. On Shotcall, gamers will find upcoming community events, tournaments, coaching sessions, and one-on-one competitions, among others. Fans can sign up, schedule, and pay to play games alongside their favorite and up-and-coming creators, celebrities, and influencers.
Origin story: Longtime gamers Thomas Gentle, Gordon Li, and Riley Auten started working on Shotcall in October 2019 with a goal to improve player engagement in gaming by creating a mutually beneficial community for fans and creators. They joined Techstars’ Seattle accelerator in January 2020 to fine-tune Shotcall and today announce $2.2 million in seed funding.
Why we’re betting on it: Currently a $60 billion industry, games and esports are becoming the most innovative social platforms on the planet. But what’s missing are on-ramps to create offline to online connections. Shotcall promises to fix that, enabling our relationships to strengthen within games, but also flourish outside them. For such a solution to succeed, it needs to be built by gamers, for gamers. As devoted gamers who deeply understand their community, Thomas and the Shotcall team have the experience and expertise to do just that.
Our take: The last 20 years have largely brought people together online around publishing, which is an inherently less interactive form of connection and communication than real-time gaming. Shotcall provides an improved avenue to interact online in the long term. As investors in gaming companies like Parsec, we’ve learned that community is the core driver of innovation in games. As such, it was key for us to invest in a company that is equally focused on community and technology and we think Shotcall fits the bill.
Further reading: “Shotcall raises $2.2 million to build gaming community hubs” via VentureBeat.
Learn about careers at Shotcall.