bit-gamer.net

Games should be free, says Zynga

Games should be free, says Zynga

Zynga, the developer behind Farmville, has proclaimed that all games should be free in the future.

Zynga, the social gaming developer behind titles such as Farmville, has written an open letter to prospective shareholders as it opens shares to the public, proclaiming that games should be free in the future.

The message came from the desk of Zynga CEO and founder Mark Pincus, who outlined the philosophy of Zynga in the letter by saying that all games should be 'free, social, accessible and data driven'.

'From the beginning, we have strived to lower the barriers to play in people’s lives, wrote Pincus regarding game accessibility and social game design. 'We want to build games to play with our parents, our children, our co-workers and our best friends...Every week our teams test new features to make our games more social. '

'Free games are more social because they’re more accessible to everyone. We’ve also found them to be more profitable. We have created a new kind of customer relationship with new economics—free first, high satisfaction, pay optional.'

'Our culture combines the creative with the analytical. We develop and operate our games as live services with daily, metrics-based player feedback. This allows us to continually iterate, innovate and invest in the content our players love.'

Pincus also expressed the belief that games should be used for the good of all, explaining how some microtransactions in Zynga games have been used to raise money following natural disasters.

Does Zynga's vision represent a viable path for the industry as whole, or is this a case of self-promotion within a short-lived social gaming bubble? Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

24 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
yakyb 4th July 2011, 11:33 Quote
Its a fair comment on a Business plan but not viable for all game types

how would microtransactions work on the witcher for example?

I have very little problem with advertising but it needs to be done in an unobtrusve way.
and agin this just isnt possible on some games

Take a game like Uplink for example how would you go about making that free?

Plus Farmville is not exactly free now is it.
Unknownsock 4th July 2011, 11:50 Quote
Like above this works for some and not for others.

Regardless if its just cosmetic or game changing, some multiplayer games benefit from players having equal opportunities. I don't think could could ever play a MMO as serious as WoW if it was bombarded with microtransactions.

I'd rather use game mechanics and knowledge to beat/progress faster than others players.
Although I do understand that it's alot harder to play new paid MMO's as you don't want to me paying full for a game every time a semi-decent one comes out just to find out it's terrible.
shigllgetcha 4th July 2011, 11:54 Quote
thats fair enough for games that take a weekend to create
Mentai 4th July 2011, 11:58 Quote
Not every game should be social. That will always be true, and so his blanket statement will always be false.
r3loaded 4th July 2011, 12:05 Quote
I'd rather pay once for a game with quality content rather than repeatedly for a vegetable patch simulator. And I'd prefer to do something in a game that I can't easily do outside.
Glix 4th July 2011, 12:13 Quote
Zynga, come back when you learn how to make real games not based on flash...
yakyb 4th July 2011, 12:37 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by shigllgetcha
thats fair enough for games that take a weekend to create

A weekend is still two days, would a lawyer want no pay if he worked a weekend?
Woodspoon 4th July 2011, 12:44 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Glix
Zynga, come back when you learn how to make games not time killing shite...

Fixed
NuTech 4th July 2011, 12:53 Quote
Nothing wrong with casual/free-to-play games, and anything that introduces new audiences into gaming is great IMO.

That said, Nicholas Lovell from Mode 7 Games nailed it in this blog - Why Free-to-Play is not the answer to everything. It's a really great read.
BLC 4th July 2011, 14:11 Quote
Sure. I can see game companies pumping out Call of Modern Warfare Duty XXVII and releasing it for free. IF they bombarded it with micropayments and subscriptions. He also left out the part where they get to mine your data in order to sell it to advertisers...

Micropayments, subscriptions or advertising are the only way that games will be free. He talks about games being free then mentions micropayments in their games - how is that "free"?
dicobalt 4th July 2011, 15:02 Quote
Zynga says games should be free, I say games should be fun.
r3loaded 4th July 2011, 15:06 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by BLC
He talks about games being free then mentions micropayments in their games - how is that "free"?
Everything in this world is free - if you pay for it. ;)
jhng 4th July 2011, 15:20 Quote
Translation: "no one should play any games that aren't made by us!"
yakyb 4th July 2011, 15:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by dicobalt
Zynga says games should be free, I say games should be fun.

Or rewarding, theres a difference
dangerman1337 4th July 2011, 15:59 Quote
If Zynga's games were priced around 40-60 USD would it sell much as say CoD or Wii Sports? They're popular because it's just so easy to get your friends on Social Networking to play with you. Playing others is fun (which is the main reason why Wii sports sold very well) but a Single Player RPG wouldn't work with micro-transactions and would only annoy Single Player RPG players due to the nature of micro-transactions.
Ross1 4th July 2011, 16:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Glix
Zynga, come back when you learn how to make real games not based on flash...

Was going to say the same thing, but shortened to: "Zynga, come back when you make a game"
shigllgetcha 4th July 2011, 17:17 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by yakyb
Quote:
Originally Posted by shigllgetcha
thats fair enough for games that take a weekend to create

A weekend is still two days, would a lawyer want no pay if he worked a weekend?

a lawyer has one customer, a game has millions
sakzzz 4th July 2011, 17:56 Quote
"Games should be free................. & littered with ads and phishing links" - Zynga
FifteeeCal 4th July 2011, 18:38 Quote
What does Zynga know about games? You can hardly call what Zynga makes 'games'. Clicking on a few buttons and then waiting x amount of hours to harvest your 'crops' is not what I would classify as gaming. If we're going to do that, we might as well call YouTube videos movies while we're at it.
sstteevveenn 4th July 2011, 21:49 Quote
and bugs. What's the point in accumulating poker chips if I can just sit down at a table and get booted back to the lobby with an empty bankroll. Accumulating chips is sort of the whole point of that game.
Dude111 4th July 2011, 21:57 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by
An interesting article for sure on this matter!
yakyb 5th July 2011, 11:32 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by shigllgetcha
Quote:
Originally Posted by yakyb
Quote:
Originally Posted by shigllgetcha
thats fair enough for games that take a weekend to create

A weekend is still two days, would a lawyer want no pay if he worked a weekend?

a lawyer has one customer, a game has millions

??? that doesnt make much sense

granted if a game that took one person a weekend to make was exposed to millions of people it should cost a penny, but not free. If you support it by advertising then it may cost nothing upfront but there will be an implied cost in the advertising
Denis_iii 5th July 2011, 12:42 Quote
Zynga should learn how to make a game first.
SMIFFYDUDE 5th July 2011, 17:10 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by NuTech
....anything that introduces new audiences into gaming is great IMO.

Wrong! Gaming should be for geeks and nerds. Not the normals!
Log in

You are not logged in, please login with your forum account below. If you don't already have an account please register to start contributing.



Discuss in the forums