Facebook’s Evolving Role In Games

Facebook is doing well and expanding gaming to more people in many ways

Sean Ryan, the head of Game Partnership at Facebook, spoke at GamesBeat about the present and future of Facebook gaming. 

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He admitted that some people think Facebook is dead. These naysayers assert that it has come and gone, and Facebook had its day in the sun. Facebook disagrees. They claim record revenue, and think they are doing just fine. Some developers, like Zynga, are declining, but others, like King, are taking their place to make Facebook more popular than ever. Over one million casual games exist and Facebook wants them all.

Facebook is expanding in many ways. They are encouraging more international games in China, London, and Moscow to expand their markets. Multi-national games are difficult, but regional games do extremely well. They aren’t just expanding geographically, either. They are adding new genres, like hidden object games and horror, to their simulation and casual games. They are also expanding to new platforms other than mobile cell phones and browser-based PCs. They expect all these new ways to play will keep Facebook games relevant in the culture.

One argument against Facebook was that the company doesn’t curate or filter their games at all. It’s a free-for-all of big titles and indie casuals side-by-side. Ryan commented that “quality is in the eye of the beholder,” so Facebook won’t be sorting out games any time soon. They would prefer to put their time into improving the platform in other ways.

In the future, Facebook wants to:

  1. Make it as easy as possible for developers to create engaging cross-platform games
  2. Improve discovery of new games by allowing your game to find its audience and the audience to find great games
  3. Make tablets more fun to play games on

We will see what they can do in 2014 to affect the gaming market.


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EmilyOrange
GameSkinny intern, college student, and lifelong nerd.