Digital Chocolate launches Google+ exclusive Gangs of Boomtown

By Kathleen De Vere Comment

Google continues to take a slow and steady approach to gaming on Google+, announcing today the social network’s newest game is Digital Chocolate’s Western themed Gangs of Boomtown. The game will be exclusive to Google+ and Digital Chocolate’s gaming portal for the next 30 days.

The game is Digital Chocolate’s third for Google+, following the developer’s previous titles Zombie Lane and Millionaire City, but Gangs of Boomtown is the company’s first exclusive Google+ launch.

“Many of the metrics in our games on Google+ have been positive and so it’s our desire to test different gameplay and genres,” explains Mark Dooley, Digital Chocolate’s vice president of marketing. “In general, we want to learn from the diverse set of people on Google, but also the avid game players on Google+, and this information will be valuable to us as we not only refine this game, but also develop others for the platform.”

Dooley also tells us that so far Digital Chocolate has been pleased with Google+ as a platform. “There have been game metrics in some of our Google+ games that have exceeded those of other platforms, but by the same token, different platforms have other strengths as well so it can be a tradeoff,” he says. “Primarily this is a great opportunity to get Gangs of Boomtown in front of a desirable pool of users and the hope is they’ll enjoy both the player-versus-environment and player-versus-player aspects, as well as the strategic challenges of the game.”

Based on our initial playthrough of the game, Gangs of Boomtown’s blend of quests, multiplayer quickdraw contests and citybuilding mechanics are likely to appeal to the same “core” demographic of players that would have enjoyed Google+’s previous exclusive titles like Kabam’s The Godfather: Five Families and Plarium’s Pirates: Tides of Fortune.

While Google+’s platform team does select which games will launch on the social network, and recent figures indicate the social network’s userbase could be as much as two thirds male, a Google spokesperson tells us that the goal is to appeal to a variety of gamers, and the network’s recent run of “core focused” games is incidental.

With Gangs of Boomtown there are now 39 games available on the network. The platform had 30 games available in early December.

According to Google+’s engineering director David Glazer, the company is still working on how games are integrated into the growing social network, “finding the balance so that people who are interested in being more engaged in games [can make] conversations work without creating spam.” Although games are still confined to a separate tab on Google+, Glazer did not rule out greater integration in the future. In January, Google announced its social network had passed 90 million registered users.