We already had HeyZap, the “YouTube for Flash games” and Game Curry, a search engine for Flash games, so not that much of a surprise we now have a “Ning for Flash games” that lets anyone create a gaming website much like Marc Andreessen’s service does the same for social networking sites.
Danish startup / gaming community Nonoba is taking a crack at just that by launching GameRise, a CMS that supposedly makes developing and maintaining customized gaming sites a breeze. The comparison to Ning – and by extension the plethora of similar services – comes from co-founder Oliver Pedersen but isn’t all that far-fetched.
GameRise allows users, from amateurs to professional developers, to create and maintain sites featuring game catalogs and social services like chat rooms and forums as well as the ability to customize the look and feel, advertising displays and language of the community websites. Once approved, user-run gaming websites can be enhanced with Nonoba’s SDKs and APIs, among which is a transactional micro-payment enabling one that lets users handle online payment for games and premium content (with Nonoba taking a cut).
It all sounds quite impressive, but to be honest the examples that were given to us with the announcement of the new Flash development initiative didn’t exactly blow us away. They pretty much all look the same apart from the name, URL and the language. The idea is sound enough, execution needs to get way better.
Kongegrate offers a set of tools for users to build Flash-based gaming sites and networks too, but does things differently. Nonoba isn’t really a head-to-head competitor and in fact, some games you can find on Kongegrate were partly built using Nonoba tools. We should also mention Mochi Media here, although they focus more on what comes after Flash games are created, in terms of monetization, distribution and analytics.
Nonoba, based in Denmark’s capital Copenhagen, raised an undisclosed Series A round of funding with Mangrove Capital Partners in June 2008, the same year it was founded. According to the startup the gaming community now has 4,000 games and games powered by Nonoba’s Multiplayer and Payment API are played on more than 10,000 sites worldwide.