Nix Hydra Inc. has raised millions to expand its successful game Egg Baby.
The mobile gaming Los Angeles-based startup, co-founded in 2012 by former Yale classmates Lina Chen and Naomi Ladizinsky, that creates mobile games made by females for females, has raised $5 million from Foundry Group to grow their popular game Egg Baby, as well as launch additional titles.
Egg Baby became a huge hit among young women without marketing.
The game was launched in 2013, was well received and gained quite the following among women and teen girls. The inspiration for Egg Baby came from a school experiment that assigned students to care for a raw egg as if it were their baby. Even though there was no marketing for the game and the initial version was quite rough, it was a hit.
In the game, a player hatches an egg, which produces a unique creature that gives gifts. The type of creature that hatches depends on how the player interacts and cares for the egg (ex. washes, dresses, feeds, tickles it, etc.). If the player forgets to care for the egg, it will die. A major reason why the game has achieved a massive following is players like to show off their creature and many new users download the game after seeing what their friends have shared.
The game has received 9 million downloads. “We didn’t think it was going to be that popular,” said Lina Chen. According to Chen, approximately 85 percent of players are female and the majority of players are under 25 years old.
Nix Hydra will continue its female-focused mobile gaming objective.
Naomi Ladizinsky commented that in the mobile gaming industry there have been a lot of games “with the same ideas iterated on over and over again”, such as games that fall into the trendy battle, quest, and runner game genres. “It’s a tech dude’s perspective,” she said. Nix Hydra anticipates it will hire an additional 20 people over the course of the next year and will use the funding it has received to launch two new games and develop a franchise around Egg Baby.