The 10 most innovative companies in gaming in 2022 – Fast Company

Explore the full 2022 list of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies, 528 organizations whose efforts are reshaping their businesses, industries, and the broader culture. We’ve selected the firms making the biggest impact with their initiatives across 52 categories, including the most innovative AR/VR, media, and music companies. ​​

Games have historically been an underrated corner of business and the culture—but no longer. People are flocking into game worlds for immersive entertainment and social connection, and celebrities and brands are following them. A concert in a video game such as Epic Games’ Fortnite or Roblox was a novelty two years ago; now virtual spaces within games are a tour stop for the biggest stars such as Ariana Grande and Lil Nas X. Non-fungible tokens were an obscure aspect of crypto culture until Dapper Labs helped them burst into the mainstream with NBA Top Shot. As gaming commands more time and attention—and as people derive more value from their digital identities—the experiences and tools supporting all this interest (and money) are growing in sophistication.

Dapper Labs has translated the fun of collecting and trading cards into a digital experience, and its Flow blockchain enables more digital games or game-like products. Roblox is the dream of the metaverse, today, and elite brands and musical artists are flocking to it to fashion interactive contests and add shopping for digital and real-world items. Epic Games’ Fortnite has extended into the fashion realm, while the company’s Unreal Engine advances what’s possible for creating more realistic clothing, hair, and landscapes. Rec Room combines gaming and creator-built items with pure social hangout rooms, because these spaces are where your friends are and where you can spend the most time with them.

As much as games have become the pretext for other forms of interaction, they’re also becoming more artistic, with titles such as the indie hit Sable from Shedworks combining an ethereal open world with a gorgeous soundtrack. Around all of this excitement are noteworthy products and services to support the gaming lifestyle. Overwolf helps tens of thousands of developers add important gaming tools to their titles, allowing players to boost skills, track their stats, and pull clips for social sharing. Venerable computer storage manufacturer Western Digital supports a better play experience for the most data-intensive titles with its solid-state drives purpose built for gaming. The surest sign that gaming is increasingly real life is the debut of Liteboxer, which uses a game-like design to turn one of the best workouts you can ask for into a frustration-alleviating exercise.

1. Dapper Labs

For mainstreaming NFTs

Dapper Labs brought non-fungible tokens (NFTs) into the mainstream with the launch of the basketball collectibles platform NBA Top Shot in the fall of 2020. Within a year, NBA Top Shot had reached a million users and notched more than $800 million in total sales. One of the biggest triumphs of the platform is that it’s not directed at the crypto community: Many of its users aren’t familiar with tokens or blockchain, but they innately understand the value of what Top Shot offers. That’s made Dapper Labs one of the most important ambassadors for mainstreaming blockchain-based experiences. Over the past year, Dapper has announced collectibles platforms for the NFL, UFC, and Spain’s La Liga (home to Real Madrid and other soccer teams). The WNBA Moments platform launched within NBA Top Shot in August. All of these experiences, meanwhile, run …….



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