torsdag 8. april 2010

Zynga’s Treasure Isle helps reverse a slide in users

Zynga’s newest game, Treasure Isle, has quickly grown to 4.3 million users since the company announced the game a week ago. It’s a clone of another game in a genre borrowed from casual game web sites. But it looks like it will do the job of stopping a slide in users at Zynga, which is the most successful Facebook game company.
The good thing for Zynga is that this game is taking off faster than FarmVille, which has 83 million monthly active users (according to AppData) and remains by far the biggest hit on Facebook. And Treasure Isle is managing to grow fast despite Facebook’s recent restrictions on viral growth channels, and Zynga has even fully launched its cross-marketing programs where it uses one game to sell another.
Treasure Isle lets users hunt for buried treasure on an island under a time limit. This game belongs to the hidden object game genre, which are huge hits on sites such as Big Fish Games. Zynga’s strategy is to move down the list of genres to make sure it has the big game categories covered: farms, check (FarmVille); fish, check (FishVille); mafia, check (Mafia Wars); poker, check (Texas Hold ‘Em Poker) etc.
Jeremy Verba, general manager for the Treasure Isle game, told Inside Social Games that the title has strong engagement, meaning players play for a long time and come back often. The game is hugely important for Zynga, which needs to keep running on the treadmill. As noted is our story about Zynga’s $5 billion valuation, four of Zynga’s six major games have been losing traffic, according to
In addition, another recent game, Poker Blitz, hasn’t done that well in its first three weeks. In Treasure Isle, gamers dig up land on deserted islands to find treasure chests or money. The game is also another clone, just as FarmVille was a clone of the less successful original Facebook game, FarmTown. Treasure Isle is a knock-off of Treasure Madness, which has around three million monthly active users.
The next major test is to see how longer players will stick with Treasure Isle, and how well the game monetizes. Of Zynga’s many games, a handful of the titles — Mafia Wars, FarmVille, and poker — provide the bulk of revenues.

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