Saga announces Saga Origins publishing arm for Web3 games

Saga announced its Saga Origins game publishing arm will publish games for the Saga Layer-1 blockchain protocol.

During GDC 2024, the company also announced that it will be launching its mainnet in April, enabling game makers on its platform to publish their games.

San Francisco-based Saga is a Layer-1 protocol and developer ecosystem in Web3. With this announcement, Saga becomes the first and only web3 chain to establish a dedicated game publishing arm for developers to partner with to release their projects.

Saga Origins is committed to offering a full service and collaborative approach to bring games to a global mass market. Whereas developers would traditionally secure grants only to build and launch their games, Saga Origins offers added beneficial support, including partnerships with influencers to generate awareness, sponsored user acquisition campaigns, community building, and promotional support.

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Games on the way

Saga had a fireworks show, viewable from a yacht on the Rhine at Gamescom 2023.
Saga had a fireworks show, viewable from a yacht on the Rhine.

The games will get announced in the coming months.

Liao said she is aware of what it costs to produce a quality game, and she wants to provide an amount that is meaningful for game developers. Saga has raised $15 million to date. The publishing house is going to be financed via the ecosystem fund.

“When the mainnet goes live, that’s when a treasury will open up in the ecosystem and a lot of the funds will come from there,” she said.

Through its on-going play-to-airdrop campaigns, Saga, game studios and guilds, all team up to organize tournaments where players are rewarded with $SAGA tokens for their participation. Most recently in January, Saga completed its The Three Kingdoms airdrop campaign with participating partners Avalanche, Polygon and Solana, said Rebecca Liao, CEO of Saga, in an interview with GamesBeat.

“Saga Origins is our love letter to the developers building games in Web3. While the onus of bringing users to the platforms often falls on the game developers, we want to buck that convention and use our platform to bring users to the games instead,” said Liao. “Saga Origins will allow developers to bring provocative, expansive, and uncompromising titles to consumers that will revolutionize how we will all view game experiences.”

“We’re the only chain to do a publishing house,” she added.

That’s because she believes it isn’t just the responsibility of the game developers to bring users to the blockchain. Rather, the platform shares a responsibility in getting users. Saga built its own user-acquisition engine and it is now showing off the publishing house, she said.

Saga Multiverse at GDC

Saga CEO Rebecca Liao.
Saga CEO Rebecca Liao.

Today’s unveiling was made at the Saga Multiverse Reveal event against the backdrop of the Game Developers Conference (GDC), where Liao opened the afternoon with a keynote focused on the Saga Multiverse, powered by both generative AI and blockchain, and Saga Origins.

Liao and her Saga team were joined by industry executives, game developers and strategic partners at the event. The creators of Parallel, Wilder World and Wanderers, in a panel moderated by Brycent, explored what defines the new era of web3 gaming.

In addition to announcing Saga Origins, guests were treated to first looks and demos of games currently in development on the Saga chain, including Rogue Nation, a fast-paced modern rogue-like game, and Another World, a metaverse game supporting crossover IP and community engagement.

Liao said, “Our mainnet launch is the culmination of over two years of tireless work by our Saga core team to offer the most performant, lowest cost infrastructure possible to Web3 developers. As proud and excited as we are to soon share this release with our Innovators and broader community, it’s only the beginning. When projects come online, games and entertainment content come to life, the Saga economy becomes the engine of our ecosystem, and our multiverse truly begins.”

The Multiverse presentation premiered a cinematic Saga mainnet trailer ahead of the launch, revealing an April release window.

Saga’s growth

Saga Mainnet Launch 1
Saga is a Layer-1 blockchain protocol.

As a Layer-1 protocol, Saga is an innovative solutions platform that seamlessly brings Web3 games to market. Its technology is hyper-focused on developer needs, and dedicated to ensuring blockspace is abundant and can be simply accessed.

There are 335 Innovator projects and counting building on its protocol, of which 80% are games. Additionally, Saga has cemented partnerships with flagship Web3 projects including Polygon, Avalanche, and Celestia, positioning itself as a leader in Web3 development.

Only weeks away, the mainnet will bring together Web3 gaming in an extensive launch campaign for the benefit of the entire Saga community. Details will be revealed closer to the mainnet launch. The inaugural projects and partnerships under Saga Origins will be announced in the near future.

Saga was founded in 2022. Early seed investors include Placeholder, Maven11, Longhash, Samsung, Com2uS, and Polygon. Originally built on Cosmos, Saga has furthered its presence by bringing typically disparate but the best ecosystems into its Saga multiverse through ongoing strategic partnerships.

Air drops to players

Saga Mainnet Launch 4
Air dropping NFTs has been popular on Saga.

The air drop is a popular method in crypto of getting tokens into the hands of users. Gamers who are on the leaderboards can be confirmed as winners. Then they can claim their air crops as winners. Then Saga will give them the Saga tokens that they’re owed. During the holidays, Saga gave out a lot of tokens to around 10,000 players or so. More recently, it gave out tokens to around 40,000 players.

Saga Origins will provide advances for game developers in typical publishing deals.

As for the games, “They have to be provocative. What struck me looking at the Web3 landscape of games is that pretty much all of them are more or less rated E for Everyone,” Liao said. “Which is great. I’m not saying that a toddler should be playing a really fine first person shooter game. But the games are more accessible. I felt like with Web3 gaming, we could push the envelope. So I really wanted the mature titles. I wanted the really provocative games.”

She added, “We like working with game developers that have pretty uncompromising visions. The ones that we work with right now definitely will argue with you on direction, which we really like. It just shows that they have passion for what they do. But I would say provocative is the top line feature we are looking for.”

Being unique

Saga Mainnet Launch 2
Saga’s mainnet launch is coming in April.

By bringing the publishing in-house at a blockchain protocol, Liao believes her company is unique in how it can provide service to game developers. Liao got the effort going late last year, and hse sees it as a logical next step for the ecosystem.

“It was a natural organic outgrowth of our ecosystem efforts so far. But we knew that it would also be a distinguishing feature,” she said.

There are about 340 projects total, with about 80% of it related to gaming, including game infrastructure. About 150 of the game projects are actual games. Saga has about 20 people.

“We’re unveiling the publishing house this time. Our mainnet launch is a huge deal that will come soon after. Our technology is highly scalable, and cost was on the front end. So there are no gas fees for the end users. Everything’s interoperable. So there’s freedom of movement of in-game assets and any other IP that is generated by the creators,” Liao said.

Liao said that there are a lot of projects focused on the intersection of AI and crypto. And there will be more about that in the future.

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