I just went through fifteen pages of tweets that told the world that
Disney bought Playdom? Ok! I GET IT! What I am looking for is what
does it mean. As an games industry veteran, follower of the social
media and social game space I can tell you would it means.
High level items on what the Disney buy of Playdom could mean:
1. The Facebook gaming phenomenon is about to get even hotter.
Big companies (Viacom, Sony, Activision) are going to look to make
their presence felt or feel like they are being left behind. No one
wants the musical chairs to stop and be left without a seat to the
dance. Or worse, stretch and make a purchase like AOL did with Bebo.
More money will be poured in and CEO of companies will be asked by
their boards “Hey CEO-man, we pay you big bucks to know what’s going
on? Where is your FarmVille” (I know this, because I get asked it) 2. Look for the next acquisitions to be CrowdStar.
Not because it’s the next largest but because they have the best
quality games with the highest engagement. CrowdStar has the best
relationship with Facebook of the remaining game developers. They
have been the guinea pig for Facebook credits, have not been spending
wildly on acquisitions and continue to just make good, solid
Facebook games. (See Happy Aquarium and Happy Pets) While I haven’t
heard any rumors they are available, it stands to reason that they
are going to get offered HUGE money and may not be able to resist the
3. Big branded Intellectual Properties will make their way on to Facebook.
This has been a trend predicted by Kristian Segerstråle of Playfish in
March at GDC and John Pleasants of Playdom just last week at Casual
Connect. Disney with it’s stable of classic characters from Mickey
Mouse to Hannah Montana or Jack Sparrow on through Wolverine will be
able to unleash a parade of branded games if they so chose.
Think about it, would you play a super hero game that is LIKE
Mobsters by Playdom but you get to be in the Marvel Universe? I can
see the nerd line from here. 4. Facebook will have to acknowledge that it is a gaming platform at
some level. Facebook lucked into the gaming just like the iPhone did.
They had no idea gaming would be within the top two or three things
people do on Facebook. Since the app platform opened up in 2007
Facebook has made concerted efforts to deal with the gaming explosion.
Most of the changes negatively affected game developers. Finally it
may be time for Facebook to learn to stop worrying and embrace the
gaming bomb. Gaming is a an integral part of Facebook and the viral
channels Facebook provides are integral to game developers, the
relationship is going to have to be repaired for both to move forward.
If Facebook turns its back on the game developers, the developers will
find new avenues of distribution.(As many companies are betting on see
Hi5 and Oberon) Without the games, one could argue, Facebook would
not be half the size it is today and certainly would not have the
Am I right? Am I wrong?