Video game developer Inworld AI has closed its latest round of funding, bringing the company's total valuation to $500 million, the startup said on Wednesday. Earlier reports put the amount raised at $30 million, but a spokesperson for Inworld AI told Decrypt in an email the figure is actually over $50 million.

“The financial runway means we can take a long-term view when it comes to supporting the developer community today, and stay ahead of the curve in the ever-evolving landscape of generative AI for tomorrow,” Inworld AI co-founder Ilya Gelfenbeyn said in a blog post announcing the raise and valuation.

The fundraising round was led by Lightspeed Venture Partners and included contributions from Stanford University, Samsung Next, and strategic investors Microsoft’s M12 fund, Eric Schmidt’s First Spark Ventures, and LG Technology Ventures.

“At Lightspeed, we believe that AI is set to overhaul every facet of game development, pushing the industry into an era of unprecedented creativity and innovation,” Lightspeed Venture Partners’ Moritz Baier-Lentz and Kishen Patel said in a statement. “A future where the “infinite power of play” will continue to expand technological boundaries.”


Inworld AI was launched in July 2021 by former developers from Google, DeepMind, and API.AI, which was acquired by Google in 2016.

The primary focus of Inworld AI is its Character Engine, which uses artificial intelligence to create more interactive non-player characters (NPCs) in video games. Inworld AI’s technology has already been used to create in-game mods for Skyrim, Stardew Valley, and Grand Theft Auto V.

Last year, Inworld was among six companies building projects focused on augmented reality, NFTs, and artificial intelligence selected to participate in the 2022 Disney Accelerator.


Inworld AI says the latest round brings its total funding to $100 million, which will go towards research and development, hiring, and infrastructure.

Other AI developers seeing a boom in funding include Nvidia and Microsoft-backed Inflection AI, which raised $1.3 billion in June, and Runway AI, which raised $141 million that same month.

Gelfenbeyn said future plans include open-sourcing portions of the Inworld platform, saying collaboration fuels innovation.

“Together with the open source community, we’re going to push forward innovations in generative AI that elevate the entire gaming industry,” Gelfenbeyn said.

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