For whatever reason, some of the biggest games on Facebook seem to be growing slower this week versus last week, according to our AppData service. Specifically, the past few months have seen Zynga‘s FarmVille — and then Café World — gain millions of new users each week. But on today’s list of the top 20 applications with the most new users, FarmVille comes in at number 5 with 781,000, and Café World at 13 with only 395,000. “Only” is relative, as these are still the largest games on Facebook. And Zynga’s other games, like Mafia Wars and Roller Coast Kingdom, are also on today’s list.
|8.||Roller Coaster Kingdom||15,124,485||+606,204||+4.01|
|9.||Mobsters 2: Vendetta||4,493,661||+559,275||+12.45|
|11.||Facebook for iPhone||17,238,632||+449,936||+2.61|
|20.||Paf le Sarko||1,105,133||+239,171||+21.64|
But why did none of them gain the millions they had before? Did Facebook’s switch from a raw news feed to an algorithmic feed a few weeks ago make it harder for Zynga (and other developers) to engage users? Possibly, although growth rates appear similar to before when you look further down the list. Perhaps Zynga has cut back on running ads in Facebook in the past week?
Anyway, Happy Aquarium, by CrowdStar, came in at number one on the list. This virtual aquarium decoration game gained 2.37 million users to reach 25.1 million total, making it the fifth-largest app on the platform.
There are some other interesting new apps on the list, from game developers we haven’t seen much. One is virtual farming game Island Paradise, from NeoPets creator Meteor Games. Another is fighting game Little Warrior, from an independent developer team. And another is Caste Age, a nice-looking fantasy role-playing game that’s also from an independent developer team. There’s also Fish Life, another virtual aquarium game, from Singapore-based Clipwire Games.
Indie social games are not the only ones growing these days. There are four quiz or quiz-creating applications on the top 20 list, including Quiz Monster at number 2, with 1.87 million new users this week. We’ve been noticing more quiz apps, recently, and maybe there’s some viral loop they’re tapping into in the new news feed? Or maybe it’s just that a lot of people love to take quizzes.
Some of these apps have seen recent drops in engagement in terms of daily active users — due to the new news feed? We’ve previously noted that at least some Quiz Monster quizzes disguise ads as features, and maybe that trick is driving people away? The rest of the apps appear to be growing DAUs along with MAUs, despite what appeared to be a small drop in DAUs around the time of news feed in previous weeks.
Finally, a classic app has also showed up on the list — Honesty Box, one of the first to launch on the Facebook platform. The app asks you and your friends to anonymously share secrets about each other. It grew by 352,000 new users to reach 2.41 million monthly actives.
And one more thing: Facebook for iPhone continues to lead as the largest mobile Facebook app that we know of. It gained 450,000 to total 17.2 million monthly actives.