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Facebook will target core gamers in 2013
Facebook will target core gamers in 2013
February 4, 2013 | By Mike Rose

February 4, 2013 | By Mike Rose
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Social games on Facebook aren't performing as well as they used to, with numerous developers now favoring mobile over browser games. But now Facebook is looking to target a new demographic: core gamers.

According to Reuters, over the course of the next 12 months Facebook is backing the launch of 10 hardcore-focused games on the social network as it looks to cater for an audience that has up to this point not been hugely interested in the social games that Facebook has had to offer.

Currently, social game performance on Facebook is in decline, as more casual gamers make the switch to mobile devices and, in turn, developers follow suit. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg admitted late last year that his company's game revenues declined by 20 percent in 2012.

With hardcore titles like the upcoming sci-fi combat game ChronoBlade (pictured), Facebook hopes to counteract this decline with a fresh new audience.

Sean Ryan, head of game partnerships at Facebook, explained, "You'll see a whole set of games hitting in the next two quarters in particular and throughout the year that really start to redefine what people think of Facebook games."

Facebook wants to embrace first-person shooters, MMO, real-time strategy games, and other such genres that appeal to the core audience, added Ryan.

Of course, Facebook is also trying to get in on the mobile games act, although that particular avenue isn't proving too successful for the company at present.


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Comments


James Yee
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You know it's not just the games that I ignore, it's facebook itself. :)

Maria Jayne
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Me neither, I tend to avoid social networking as much as possible and I'm about as core as gamers get.

Daryl Ducharme
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Well that's awfully anecdotal. I'm sure Facebook made this decision to strengthen the connection people already have with Facebook more than to drive new/occasional users. That would probably something much simpler. This decision seems very niche.

Alan Rimkeit
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Core gamers are too busy playing their 360's, PS3's, or PC's story play games on Facebook.

Mike Griffin
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Strange, isn't it? I've all but completely migrated out of non-work related social networking -- or specifically Facebook -- myself.

Meandered away over the last two years when I realized most of the people I saw using Facebook were a) Teens using it as a debauched rumor-mill/YouTube link repository, b) homemakers and seniors addicted to the 'Ville titles and gaudy casino games, or c) companies attempting to leverage it for viral marketing or F2P user acquisition purposes before the proverbial bubble bursts.

Granted, it's nowhere close to sliding into semi-irrelevant stagnation like, say, Myspace has. Then again, at the peak of Myspace people would've never seen it sliding into the background like it has. All I can say with certainty is that the last few professional conferences/events I attended (events with a decidedly "core" theme or focus) I kept hearing the words, "People still use Facebook?" from many studio friends.

Of course when that's being said, it's with a hint of jest and mirth. Everyone knows FB is still being used by hundreds of millions of people and can be an advantage when creatively harnessed.

But it's also a sign of the times and an indication of one demographic's pseudo-disdain for current day Facebook, or a neutral/uninterested stance and the ability to get along quite fine without it.

Ramin Shokrizade
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As gamers on and off of Facebook mature in their gaming habits, they will want more depth. That said, they also have developed a fairly sophisticated aversion to the Chinese-style monetization models that are ubiquitous on Facebook. I think if Facebook game developers want to be taken seriously by "core" gamers, they need to start taking core gamers seriously.

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Jeferson Soler
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@ Dave Smith - Good questions and my answer to your second question is you shouldn't play such games on Facebook. I played Facebook games (and I use the word "games" loosely for some of them) before and I can tell that Facebook has couple problems that makes it unfit for running games. Games would either crash, freeze, choke/hiccup, slow-down, etc., and if Facebook can't handle small games, then chances are that it won't be able to handle big games. "Hardcore" games have a better chance of working really good on a dedicated/exclusive website than on Facebook.

Dylan Tan
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As much as I dislike FB and having thought playing FB games does not occur to me, I think we should not be so quick to dismiss FB, for a simple reason; they still have a large following.

Alan Rimkeit
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A large following of core gamers? I think not. At least one's that would game on FB. LOL

GameViewPoint Developer
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Casual games worked on FB because of the kind of audience it has. When people think of games on FB they think of social games, not COD, and I think they are going to have a hard time changing that perception. I think it's possible but they are going to have to spend big on advertising.

GameViewPoint Developer
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Casual games worked on FB because of the kind of audience it has. When people think of games on FB they think of social games, not COD, and I think they are going to have a hard time changing that perception. I think it's possible but they are going to have to spend big on advertising.

Nooh Ha
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Facebook has 1.06bn monthly users. Many of you lot may not count yourselves amongst them (and there is nothing wrong with that) but, as kabam and Kixeye have proven, there are enough hard core gamers within that 1.06bn user base to make for a large and lucrative commercial opportunity. Facebook believes it is an under-served market and I reckon they are right. However, whether developers can create the the right sort of deep, fun and rewarding games within the confines of Flash to attract more hard-core users is a different question...

Jeferson Soler
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@ Nooh Ha - My criticism is not whether Facebook can attract "hardcore" game players or not. My criticism of Facebook is that it is not fit for games at all. Even actual games, like Bejeweled Blitz and Robot Unicorn Attack, had problems in Facebook at times. It is not impossible to attract "hardcore" game players to a Flash game on the web, but Facebook is just not good for that, in my opinion.

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