October 28, 2020 – Tilt Five, creator of a tabletop augmented reality (AR) board game that features the use of AR headsets within its games, has today announced that it has secured USD $7.5 million in Series A funding.
The funding round was led by SIP Global Partners, with participation from investors BITKRAFT Ventures, Galaxy Interactive, Logitech, and games industry innovator Ken Birdwell. SIP Global Partners’ Jeffrey Smith will now join Tilt Five’s board of directors. Following a USD $1.7 million Kickstarter campaign last year, this latest round of funding will be used to hire additional employees, build partnerships, and expand available content, according to the company.
“Tilt Five was founded on the idea that we can bring family and friends together to play in the real world, enhanced with the magical capabilities of immersive 3D technology,” said Jeri Ellsworth, Tilt Five CEO. “While the tech giants invest billions in far-off solutions, this investment expands our ability to deliver on a proven set of technologies resulting in an affordable, social and wearable device.”
By using the company’s proprietary AR glasses, a game board, and a wand controller, Tilt Five engages players in tabletop and video games in shared 3D holographic environments. Players will be able to watch as games spring to life, allowing them to explore, battle, and solve puzzles with friends both locally and remotely on their tables. Tilt Five states that its features include:
- Tilt Five AR glasses that are designed with a patented 110-degree field-of-view optical system, bringing immersive 3D worlds to life right on tabletops;
- The glasses weigh just under 95 grams, according to the company, allowing for comfort during extended game sessions;
- A six-degrees-of-freedom (6DoF) wand controller that enables players to reach into and physically control and interact with game environments and characters;
- An embedded camera system that tracks physical objects like game pieces and hands and seamlessly blends them with virtual ones;
- Stereo speakers and microphone so players can immerse themselves in solo experiences or converse with friends while playing together remotely.
The company added that games of all genres will work with the Tilt Five platform, including simulation, RPG adventures, puzzle, esports, arcade, strategy games, classic tabletop, action video, and party games. Content from third-party developers will include games from Tabletopia, HappyGiant, Niffler, PlayStack, Beatshapers, Playito, Monocle Society, Deck13, GFX47, and Battle Map Studio.
Commenting on the announcement, Jeffrey Smith, General Partner of SIP Global Partners and Board Member of Tilt Five, said: “SIP Global Partners invested in Tilt Five because we believe that, with its revolutionary approach to AR and deeply collaborative experiences, Tilt Five is poised to be the first globally successful consumer AR game system.” Smith added, “We’ve been closely following Tilt Five’s CEO Jeri Ellsworth’s career and believe she and her team have the technical acumen and depth of experience to make Tilt Five an incredible success.”
“By focusing on a grounded use case, Tilt Five is able to achieve product specifications that are far beyond what any other AR headset can deliver; high brightness, a wide field of view, ample comfort and unlimited social interaction,” said Avi Bar-Zeev, XR pioneer who helped the conception of Microsoft HoloLens, Amazon’s Echo Frames and undisclosed projects at Apple.
Tilt Five has begun ramping up production and will commence shipping kits to Kickstarter backers and pre-order customers over the coming two quarters. Tilt Five XE kits include a pair of AR glasses, a game board and a wand. XE Kits are currently USD $359 and are available to pre-order here. Tilt Five will also provide Social Kits that will include 3 pairs of AR glasses, 3 wands and a gameboard, available later in 2021.
For more information on Tilt Five and its augmented reality board game experience, please visit the company’s website.
Video / image credit: Tilt Five / YouTube / Twitter