Facebook Says Happy Birthday to Instant Games With New Games and Features

Livestreaming, video chat ... and Angry Birds!

Facebook celebrated the anniversary of Instant games in a big way Facebook

Facebook is celebrating the first anniversary of its Instant Games with the announcement of new games and features.

The social network announced the launch of Instant Games—its HTML5 cross-platform gaming experience for Messenger and News Feed on both mobile and the web—at the end of November 2016, and it was rolled out to all Messenger users in May.

New games that will be making their way onto the Instant Games platform include Angry Birds in early 2018. CoolGames is developing the Instant Games version of Angry Birds, as it did with fellow classic game Tetris, which debuted on the platform last week.

Other new games that will climb on board “in the coming months and weeks” include:

Facebook also announced two new features for Instant Games: livestreaming and video chat.

Livestreaming will begin rolling out Thursday, and it enables gamers to share their game-play exploits. The social network said in a Newsroom post: “It’s super easy to get started: While playing a game, tap the camera icon located in the upper-right corner of the game. Once selected, you can choose the audience you want to broadcast to and add a short description to say something about your video. To start recording, just press the ‘Start Live Video’ button. Once the broadcast ends, the video will be published to your page or profile so that fans and friends who missed it can watch at a later time. You can remove the video post at any time, just like any other post.”

Video chat will be introduced early next year, starting with Words With Friends. Facebook said more than 245 million people use Messenger’s video chat feature each month, and adding it to Instant Games will enable players to “challenge and play games with each other from within the video chat experience,” as well as to “watch each other’s reactions as they run up the score.”

david.cohen@adweek.com David Cohen is editor of Adweek's Social Pro Daily.