Set Sail for Your Island Farm Paradise with This Week’s Top 20 Facebook Games

The new year is well underway, and all signs of holiday-themed games has disappeared from our weekly list of top games by monthly active users (MAU). But although the holidays have passed, the farming and animal raising trend continues, with many of the top spots filled by games in that category.

Here’s the list:

Top Gainers This Week – Games
Name MAU Gain Gain, %
1. Pillow Fight12,081,145+2,488,511+20.60
2. Tiki Farm3,631,691+2,023,720+55.72
3. Happy Island7,516,717+1,649,209+21.94
4. Zoo World12,044,503+1,548,891+12.86
5. Texas HoldEm Poker23,581,467+1,097,176+4.65
6. Country Life6,693,223+676,886+10.11
7. Bubble Popp3,130,426+595,666+19.03
8. Garden World636,676+480,521+75.47
9. Tarjetitas4,325,827+406,140+9.39
10. Three Kingdoms Online – Best Browser Game of 2009!677,398+366,449+54.10
11. FarmVille Gift Sender540,429+358,677+66.37
12. MindJolt Games15,157,422+332,739+2.20
13. what are you born to do?1,259,722+259,546+20.60
14. My Town470,012+236,112+50.24
15. Island Paradise6,520,626+232,327+3.56
16. Wild Ones623,697+229,876+36.86
17. Ninja Saga2,051,659+184,461+8.99
18. Bite Me583,849+158,222+27.10
19. Happy Hotel892,347+154,707+17.34
20. IQ test1,145,035+150,928+13.18

We cover Pillow Fight, which is more of a poke-style app than a game, over on Inside Facebook. Here are some others that caught our eye:

Petville — This Zynga game is notable for its absence. Last week it still had the number two position (beneath Pillow Fight), with 12 percent growth to 18.5 million users. But this week it’s in negative territory, having lost 3.5 percent of its users.

It could be that Zynga simply scaled back its marketing over the holiday, but Texas Hold’em has continued its steady growth. The loss could also be a momentary blip, or a sign that Petville doesn’t have as much potential as other Zynga titles.

Tiki Farm, Happy Island and Island Paradise — This appears to be the week of the island refuge, as these three games have a rather similar Pacific island theme. The focus in each is a little different, between farming and amusement-park building, but all appear ripe for micro-transactions from users eager to fantasize that they’re somewhere warm.

Garden World — Resurgent with the new year, this long-dormant title has been growing strongly, although it’s too early to tell where it will end up. A typical farming theme, with an interesting twist: You can cross-breed your plants and name your new creations, making it a can’t-miss for Gregor Mendel fans.

Three Kingdoms Online — As this game notes in its description, it’s based on the famous Romance of the Three Kingdoms, an ancient Chinese history. It also bears what’s more than a coincidental resemblance to the SNES hit of the same name, though likely not enough to get it in trouble. Note that this game bounces you out of Facebook to its own Facebook Connect site when you start playing.

Farmville Gift Sender — This sneaky app rides on the coattails of Farmville, but isn’t actually associated with it. And as of this writing, it has been banned for its infringement, leaving room for something new next week.