According to the Casual Games Association there are more than 300 million estimated casual game players on the internet. There are also over 350 million social users on Facebook. So Finnish company Frosmo is launching a new service that combines elements of both worlds and brings them to the rest of the globe.
Frosmo’s gaming portal already offers not only a myriad of casual games, but actual tournaments, prizes, and ranking systems. Now, this service is being offered worldwide with Frosmo deploying its Flash-based platform to any web site. Furthermore, players will be able to now log into any of these updated locals through the use of Facebook Connect or a Frosmo Facebook application.
To break down the social benefit of this system, Frosmo points out the fact that many social games have “teams” (mobs, guilds, etc.), but those users rarely interact with one another. Most of the time, it is a simple message saying “Join my mafia,” thus these teams are nothing more than a gaggle of people (most of the time).
For Frosmo, users are actually able to progress together as a team — and now, they can do so on any portal utilizing the new service. As a team, their progress is measured based on what members are actually doing in game and their performance in tournaments, not just blind recruiting. Teams will also be able to see their progression in the form of what the company calls “Frosmo Rank.”
What is also interesting about the Frosmo service is that they are well aware of the value of virtual goods and currencies (which is expectant to be over $1 billion this year). To that end, the portal has its very own virtual currency. In and of itself, it may not merit mention, but the currency, Frollars, is actually integral in the whole tournament concept behind the service.
Frollars are your actual buy-in for tournaments, and without them, you cannot compete. Without competition, you cannot increase your Frosmo Rank. Of course, this also means that the prizes for tournaments are, often, more Frollars as well, but before you start thinking this is some simple cyclic methodology, Frosmo actually lets its users buy memberships with the virtual currency. Yes, you can exchange your Frollar winnings for membership without having to pay for it, granting users more games, more tournaments, and a “rank point multiplier tool.” Furthermore, you can also earn Frollars from your current active team. Suffice to say, this whole concept works wonders on actually playing together.
Currently, the company states that “ Frosmo makes it easy for publishers, social networking sites and leading Internet portals to quickly increase ARPPU (€20 per month in EU market), by plugging into existing payment gateways and sharing revenue streams.” Furthermore, Frosmo currently works with 30 different partners around the world including MTV 3 Finland, China.com, Yahoo! Middle-East (formerly Maktoob), Sanook.com (Thailand), and Ekolay.com (Turkey). As for Frosmo itself, since its launch in mid-2008 it has growing by 20% each month and currently hosts over 3 million global players with a projection of 15 million, through this new service, by the end of 2010.