Game Developers Suggest Android, Roll Eyes at Facebook Credits Takeover


gamer11.jpgADOTAS – Adotas Publisher Bob Regular was at the Inside Social Apps conference yesterday in San Francisco and sent in a report from a panel discussion titled “The Future of Social Gaming” and featuring execs from social and mobile gaming stalwarts Zygna, Crowdstar and Playdom.

Their advice to upstart mobile game developers is to begin with the Android platform as there are less barriers to entry. In addition, game developers want to get their feet wet in Asia but are unsure how — perhaps they should take a second and learn one of those Nokia operating systems.

Playdom cofounder Rick Thompson decided to look on the bright side of Facebook’s announcement on Monday that Facebook Credits would be the one and only system of virtual currency on the social network come July 1. Facebook is hooked on social gaming revenue, he said, and will keep improving infrastructure and adding technical support for developers.
The bigger app and game developers on Facebook use its credits system, and force a smile when Facebook takes a 30% cut. However, smaller developers may get royally screwed on revenue with such a move.
Zynga, which once used its own currency system, and Facebook had a catfight last summer about the social network’s share (with Zynga threatening to leave and take FarmVille with it), but eventually the two companies came to a five-year agreement where Zynga reportedly received a sweet discount.

Also at the conference, Deborah Liu, manager of product marketing for Facebook Credits and Games, was (appropriately) met with derisive laughter when she commented, “Every single day we know developers get to choose between our platforms and another platform.”

While Facebook may be the biggest game in town, alienated developers are likely keeping a lookout for a suitable contender — one without such a tyrannical leader. Whatever happened to that Zynga-Google social gaming network?


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