Tuesday afternoon, at San Francisco’s Tech Crunch Disrupt 2010, some entrepreneurs onstage made us believe that we can play on the Web for any purpose. The speakers offered energetic speeches and were really enthusiast when answering questions of the members of the jury.

Those two following start-ups particularly caught our attention: GameCrush and ToVieFor.

The founder of Game Crush  arrived onstage, holding a bear, to give us a lesson of seduction. He took the example of a man who wants to make a date with a beautiful girl at the bar, he proposed to ask her “Would you like to play with me online?” instead of “would you like to give me your phone number?” The Web site is designed for both women and men over 18, and allows gamers to meet, get matched and pay to play casual games with other gamers. This is an easy way to meet people, and the highly interactive interface will let users place pictures and videos on their profile.
Today, thousands of GameCrush PlayDates are online, joining the site is free or you can be invited. There are two types of GameCrush accounts: players who can view and select which PlayDate they want to play with and on which game, and PlayDates who get paid to have fun and play.
Their business model is successful - browsing PlayDate profiles and live chat are free on GameCrush, however players pay sixty cents per minute and PlayDates can earn twenty cents or more per hour while playing in a video and text chat. GameCrush wants to change the way we flirt.

The next startup, TVF or ToVieFor is shopping gaming, which enables women to play with sales to buy luxury branded bags and accessories. In a few steps bargain hunters can buy half-price Versace bag or D&G glasses, for example.
First, the user need to purchase credits to gain access to the catalog, from 1 credit (99 cents) to 100 credits ($74.99), the higher the purchase, the more likely to get good sales. Then, when an item is selected, the user can immediately play and enter the sale (one credit requested), while comparing the retail value and the sale value in real time, the price going down faster as more and more members join the sale.
Currently, if 200 members are participating in a sale, the price will drop by $100 in ten minutes. So by comparing in real time the retail value and the sale value, the user can see the best time to click on the “buy now” button. But because only a limited amount of inventory for each item is available, waiting too long can backfire. ToVieFor shows a new way to shop by gaming.

By Laura Tisserand