Curse, a startup that offers a variety of gaming-related resources, tools, and news sites, has added a new property to its arsenal: the company has just acquired MMO-Champion, a very popular site that follows news for the hit massively multiplayer game World of Warcraft. Curse is acquiring the site from Major League Gaming and is not disclosing the terms of the deal, other than to say MMO-Champion founder Fabien Bonte will be joining the Curse team.
This continues Curse’s streak of purchasing promising and successful gaming properties as it looks to establish itself as the de facto resource for serious gamers. Curse CEO Hubert Thieblot says that according to internal analytics, MMO-Champion is seeing 80 million page views and 7 million unique visitors a month. That’s in addition to the 8 million unique visitors that Curse is drawing across its existing properties. Between MMO-Champion and Curse’s other sites, Thieblot says that the company will draw around 300 million page views a month.
Visitors to MMO-Champion will note that it isn’t a particularly attractive website — in fact, it’s downright dated, with a design that wouldn’t have looked out of place in 2001. Curse knows this, and Thieblot says that the company intends to redesign the site in the near future with plans to also improve the MMO-Champion forums, which he says are “exploding”.
Thieblot founded Curse in 2005 when his parents kicked him out of the house after tiring of his 16-hour-a-day addiction to World of Warcraft. Since then, the company has done quite well: it has raised around $11 million in funding, and has acquired other popular gaming sites like DiabloFans.com. In addition to its gaming news, Curse features community forums, wikis, download archives, and other resources for gamers.
It also offers a downloadable plugin manager that gamers can use to keep their gaming add-ons up to date. A more robust version of the software, which includes features like syncing plugins across multiple computers and one-click updating, is available for a premium.