We’ve been covering MySpace’s attempt to reach out to game developers for a few weeks now. The company has so far completed a major platform upgrade, hired a new exec to manage that platform, and invited developers to work in its Seattle and Los Angeles offices.
Its latest move: a set of “developer services” aimed at enticing more people over to work on MySpace. The social network has put together a package that could be especially useful for new or smaller companies.
The included services are actually pretty good. Here’s the lineup:
- A year of free hosting and computing with Joyent
- A 20 percent discount on payment platform fees from Social Gold
- Built-in monetization and micro-payments with PlaySpan
- Local and international payments through ClickandBuy
- Simplified enrollment to Microsoft BizSpark
- Entry into a Scoreloop competition for a million free ad impressions
You can read more about the offering on MySpace’s blog post. What’s interesting here are the lengths that MySpace is going to in order to cater to developers; it’s not unusual for the company to seek attention, but lately all of its big announcements have been geared toward game makers.’
MySpace has been home to a range of developers for years — its platform is where Playdom got big, and where Zynga has had success with some of its main titles (see our list of the top 25 games from this past month for an up-to-date list).
It’s not clear what else the company might do to attract developers, but the timing for all these moves is convenient. Facebook is in the midst of pushing developers to adopt Credits, while taking a large cut of their virtual goods revenue, even as it reduces communication channels that developers have relied on for traffic. Although some apps are still growing, many have been seeing traffic losses in recent months. Facebok has been taking some measure to ease the process, like signing on to a “strategic relationship” with Zynga (full terms were not disclosed), following tense negotiations around the largest social game developer’s business on the platform.
Ultimately, Facebook has around 500 million monthly active users and it’s still growing. MySpace’s traffic leveled out at a little under 90 million in March, after a long decline, according to comScore. Beyond programs like the one announced today, its core product will need to draw in a lot more users in order to redirect developers from Facebook.