Fred and Larry tap AI to expand gaming access
December 5, 2023
Longtime gamer Fred Webber and his cofounder, Larry Webber, are tapping into AI to make their favorite past-time more accessible for all.
Their company, WarpTable LLC, enables folks to play collectible card games remotely so distance from friends, crap weather, or personal mobility need not restrict anyone’s fun. And a crowdfunding campaign for the software is coming in January!
The duo tapped into the Launch Dayton network through Launch Dayton Startup Week and the Entrepreneurs’ Center’s ESP program, which provided them with mentorship, marketing and legal support.
We recently caught up with Larry to learn more about their entrepreneur journeys.
Introduce yourself — who are you and what is your company?
We are Fred and Larry Webber. Our company, WarpTable LLC provides a service where people playing collectible card game can play remotely. People love to play games but sometimes they cannot travel to where they can play. It may be due to long distance, severe weather, or their personal mobility challenges. WarpTable overcomes these barriers by providing a high resolution, AI-assisted image so players can read the fine print on their opponent’s cards.
How did your company start?
We recognized a need for people to be able to play their collectible card games remotely. Fred encountered this when he left his Ohio friends for college, and again years later when he began his military service. We are both natural problem solvers, so Fred designed a solution based on his technical expertise. After two years of development, we now have a product that is almost ready for the market.
Why this idea?
The challenge is presenting a very clear image of the card to the remote player. Current solutions like Zoom or a cell phone-based solution can show a card, but your opponent cannot read the fine print on the card. For these games, the fine print is what explain the “special powers” of that card. This is an essential part of these games.
Did you always want to be an entrepreneur?
I always thought about it, but I needed a compelling solution to champion. Over the years, I had many great ideas, but I needed a way to leap from idea to delivered solution. Having demonstrated a limited version of WarpTable at several gaming conventions, we are confident this is the right solution.
The Launch Dayton community values are: 1. Be Bold 2. All Are Welcome 3. People First 4. Give First 5. Remove Barriers. How do you embody one or more of these values?
WarpTable removes barriers. We have demonstrated it at several major gaming conventions to validate the idea. We received a lot of interest from charities supporting mobility-limited people. They want to game, but cannot easily travel to a friend’s house or a game store.
What identities or life experiences do you bring to entrepreneurship that helped prepare you for this lifestyle?
Fred is a lifelong gamer. Helping others to play is personal to him. I have many years creating and supporting business solutions in all types of businesses.
What is the biggest barrier you’ve faced on your entrepreneur journey?
As co-founders, we each have our own strengths and weaknesses. We seek everyone’s help with our Gamefound crowdfunding campaign to hire part-time assistance to fill these professional gaps.
Why do you love what you do?
WarpTable is an enabler, so people have the freedom to play more often with their friends. In a sense, we bring a spot of happiness to these lives.
What advice would you offer fellow or aspiring entrepreneurs?
No one else can see the solution as clearly as you, so persist, and never let naysayers hold you back. Learn from your failures and continue trying.
How can the Launch Dayton community support you?
Tell your gamer friends about us! Our Gamefound crowdfunding launches soon, but we need support to make the launch a success.
We will also be looking to network with local developers that have the technical skills we need to fill out the product’s full potential.
Connect with Fred and Larry by emailing [email protected].