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Google+ loses key partners as PopCap, Wooga pull games

Google+ loses key partners as PopCap, Wooga pull games

June 14, 2012 | By Eric Caoili

PopCap and Wooga, two of the biggest social game developers on Google+, are pulling their respective titles from Google's social network less than a year after the service launched its games platform.

Google+, which was meant to be Google's answer to Facebook, has received much criticism for failing to retain or engage users. And now it appears that social game developers are also leaving the site behind.

PopCap and Wooga were two of the largest developers to make their games available on Google+ when the service launched its games platform last August. On Facebook, PopCap's Blitz series of titles have over 13 million monthly active users, while Wooga's total catalog has more than 40.1 million.

But when Gamasutra approached a number of Google+ developers last month to solicit their success stories with the platform, both Wooga and PopCap declined to participate -- a representative from the latter replied, "We're not really up for a conversation on that topic, I'm afraid."

Now Wooga is removing all of its titles from Google+. The German developer expects to pull all three of its launch games -- Monster World, Diamond Dash, and Bubble Island (the company's most popular games on Facebook) -- from the platform by July 1, according to Social Games Observer.

And Electronic Arts-owned PopCap will remove its only Google+ title, Bejeweled Blitz (EA's second most popular title on Facebook with 9.3 million monthly users, behind The Sims Social), from the site next week, reports Inside Social Games.

"PopCap has decided to suspend Bejeweled Blitz on Google+ to redeploy our resources to other adaptations of Bejeweled," an EA representative tells Gamasutra. "Certainly, Google is a valuable gaming partner for PopCap and EA, and we'll continue to develop for Google platforms."

Those other Google platforms likely refer to Android and Chrome, which also host PopCap games. EA adds, "These decisions are never easy, but ultimately we believe that dedicating our resources to new projects is in the best interest of PopCap and our Bejeweled fans."

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