Happy $100 Billion to Mark Zuckerberg Productions !

Heres to an expected $100 billion market valuation to the latest Silicon Valley Legend, Facebook- A Mark Zuckerberg Production.

Some milestones that made FB what it is-

1) Beating up MySpace, Ibibo, Google Orkut combined

2) Smart timely acquisitions from Friend feed , to Instagram

3) Superb infrastructure for 900 million accounts, fast interface rollouts, and a policy of never deleting data. Some of this involved creating new technology like Cassandra. There have been no anti-trust complaints against FB’s behavior particularly as it simply stuck to being the cleanest interface offering a social network

4) Much envied and copied features like Newsfeed, App development on the FB platform, Social Gaming as revenue streams

5) Replacing Google as the hot techie employer, just like Google did to Microsoft.

6) An uncanny focus, including walking away from a billion dollars from Yahoo,resisting Google, Apple’s Ping, imposing design changes unilaterally, implementing data sharing only with flexible partners  and strategic investors (like Bing)

FB has made more money for more people than any other company in the past ten years. Here’s wishing it an even more interesting next ten years! With 900 million users if they could integrate a PayPal like system, or create an alternative to Adsense for content creators, they could create an all new internet economy – one which is more open than the Google dominated internet ; 0

 

Google Plus Gaming vs Facebook Gaming

After a few hiccups, Facebook has gotten the notifications scrolling back and much better than Google Plus. This gives it a cleaner advantage in social gaming interface – even for the same game. and of course many more gamers!

Clearly the games stream is much more efficiently designed in FB, probably because they need to earn some ad revenue- that forces you to think more optimally for space. FB interface is also bug free compared to the constant error in G+ (error changing circle membership– ideally I wanted to create one gaming circle for all gaming friends)

See this  – not just compare the games stream/notifications only

vs

Research on Social Games

Social Gaming is slightly different from arcade gaming, and the heavy duty PSP3, XBox, Wii world of gaming.  Some observations on my research ( 😉 ) on social gaming across internet is as follows-

There are mostly 3 types of social games-

1) Quest- Build a town/area/farm to earn in game money or points

2) Fight- fight other people /players /pigs earn in game money or points

3) Puzzle- Stack up, make three of a kind, etc

Most successful social games are a crossover between the above three kinds of social games (so build and fight, or fight and puzzle etc)

In addition most social games have some in game incentives that are peculiar to social networks only. In game incentives are mostly in game cash to build, energy to fight others, or shortcuts in puzzle games. These social gaming incentives are-

1) Some incentive to log in daily/regularly/visit game site more often

2) Some incentive to invite other players on the social network

A characteristic of this domain is blatant me-too, copying and ripping creative ideas (but not the creative itself)  from other social games. In general the successful game which is the early leader gets most of the players but other game studios can and do build up substantial long tail network of players by copying games. Thus there are a huge variety of games.

However there are massive hits like Farmville and Angry Birds, that prove that a single social game well executed can be very valuable and profitable to both itself as well as the primary social network hosting it.

Accordingly the leading game studios are Zynga, Electronic Arts and (yes) Microsoft while Google has been mostly a investor in these.

A good website for studying data about social games is http://www.appdata.com/ while a sister website for studying developments is  http://www.insidesocialgames.com/

As you can see below Appdata is a formidable data gatherer here (though I find the top App – Static HTML as both puzzling and a sign of un corrected automated data gathering),

but I expect more competition in this very lucrative segment.

 

 

New game on Google Plus- Triple Town by Spry Fox

The latest game on Google Plus is Triple Town, by Spry Fox http://www.spryfox.com/, makers of Steambirds survival.

Spry Fox is made by two ex Microsofties Daniel Cook and Dave E. , and they already have hit games on their hands but true to their name, they use all platforms including Flash.

Triple Town has a slightly classic smoothed font/icon look for a build build game with cute animals. Detailed review as follows soon!

The game is a play on Tic Tac To, and uses a combination of tricks to keep you hooked, from smoooth iconery,cute bears, ninja bears,coins that buy you goodies. Basically 3 consecutive grass make a bush, 3 consecutive Bush make a Tree, 3 trees make a house, 3 houses make a church, trap bears and they turn into gravestones and 3 gravestones turn into– you get the idea. Use bots to clear space, crystals to make wild cards, and store and retrieve things from storehouse. Ninja bear teleports!

 

 

 

 

Zynga Mafia Wars 2 on Google Plus

The latest game on Google Plus is a clone of one of the most important games in social gaming history- Mafia Wars 2. Early days and a more detailed review to follow- but there has been a design paradigm change in terms of icons, fonts and storyline. Will this capture the gamers attention- time will tell?