Facebook is opening up its games ecosystem even further, the company announced Tuesday. Facebook launched a new discovery system so newer and smaller game developers can gain exposure.
Through Facebook Mobile Games Publishing, a pilot program which will help developers grow on mobile, Facebook will help small and medium-sized developers by promoting their games across the company’s mobile apps. By having a more open games ecosystem (which was previously dominated by Zynga), Facebook has found an enhanced revenue stream, as payments from game developers has grown steadily.
Facebook Software Engineer Victor Medeiros announced the news in a blog post:
With more than 800 million monthly users of our mobile apps and more than 260 million people playing games on Facebook, we are using our unique reach and targeting capabilities to help games in our program find and engage a valuable audience of the right users. This program is designed to reach people who already play games on Facebook with new games that may interest them. For example, we will help strategy game fans find strategy games and casual game enthusiasts find casual games.
We are invested in the success of these games, and in exchange for a revenue share, we will be collaborating deeply with developers in our program by helping them attract high-quality, long-term players for their games. We’ll also be sharing analytics tools and the expertise we’ve gained from helping games grow on our platform for more than six years.
Facebook has already included 10 smaller developers in this program:
- 5th Planet’s RPG card battle game, Dawn of the Dragons
- Brainbow’s puzzle-packed adventure game, Dr. Newton: The Great Brain Adventure
- Certain Affinity’s pirate-themed strategy game, Age of Booty: Tactics
- Dragonplay’s social poker game, Live Hold’Em
- Gameloft’s medieval strategy/simulation game, Kingdoms & Lords
- Gamevil’s train management simulation Train City
- KiwiGames’ quest-based exploration game, Shipwrecked
- Outplay Entertainment’s explore-and-battle fantasy game, Monster Legacy
- Space Ape’s multiplayer combat strategy game, Samurai Siege
- WeMade Entertainment’s endless-running game WINDrunner
Games are becoming a bigger part of Facebook’s monetization plan, and it’s been a win-win for both parties. At the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco earlier this year, Facebook noted that in 2012, $2 billion was paid out to game developers through Facebook. Additionally, more than 100 developers generated more than $1 million on Facebook last year. Considering that a portion of game revenue goes back to Facebook, it is in the company’s best interests to have a wider gaming platform.
Though Facebook doesn’t often break out how much money it takes in from games, the total payments revenue (which includes money gained from games), has grown from $186 million in the first quarter of 2012 to $214 million in the second quarter of 2013.
Image courtesy of Dawn of the Dragons Mobile app page.