There's a new HTML5 platform in town, and its name is Goko. The company behind this platform consists of top platform and gaming veterans, and is backed by $8 million in series A funding from Redpoint Ventures and Alsop Louie Partners. Goko's goal? To offer cross-platform games including the first-ever cross-platform multiplayer version of Dominion and a private beta of Catan World, a Settlers of Catan MMO, both available today.
On Thursday Goko announced that it has acquired the rights for 150 games and licenses from Mayfair Games, Rio Grande Games, Reiner Knizia and many more. The company said it's partnering with "brilliant" developers worldwide to re-imagine these popular board and card games for HTML5. Studios interested in creating/porting and monetizing their titles on the new platform can now download the SDK at developers.goko.com.
"Platform features include player authentication, leaderboards and achievements, game hosting and testing, virtual goods and virtual stores, and payments," the company said. "Developers can build their own games on the platform, or partner with Goko to build a game based on one of the company’s many licenses. Goko games launching on Android and iOS will leverage Ludei's CocoonJS and CAAT, that wraps them in a performance-accelerated app that is distributable in the Apple App Store and on Google Play."
Goko said Dominion and Catan World -- the latter of which is in beta -- can be played now across Facebook, Google+ and Goko.com. The HTML5 games will soon be offered as tablet-ready titles on Google Play and Apple's App Store for iOS. Also live today at Goko.com are Forbidden City, a tile placing digital game designed by famed board game designer Reiner Knizia, War Factory, a puzzle and war strategy mashup, and All the King’s Men, a new tower defense game.
"Dominion as a social game is something fans have been looking forward to and it is great to watch them all enjoy it in a new way," said Jay Tummelson, co-owner of Rio Grande Games. "Goko is getting us there quickly and making it available through Facebook, on mobile and on the web."
Old-school PC gamers may remember Goko founders Ted Griggs and Kevin Binkley from one of their former projects called Electric Gravity, a gaming platform that was acquired by Microsoft and re-named as MSN Gaming Zone years ago. Other members of the team come from the likes of Digital Chocolate, GREE (formerly OpenFeint), Zynga, and Ribbit (now owned by BT).
"Only the biggest games companies have had tools for creating and launching social games across all the big platforms. Now we’re bringing that massive advantage within reach of all developers," said Goko CEO Ted Griggs. "Today we’re starting to release new games across Facebook, Google+, and Goko.com, Windows Store, Android and iOS. And we’re also turning all of the tools and services that we’ve created over to developers so that they are empowered to do the same thing."
Gamers interested in playing these new games can get started at Goko.com.