Social Gaming Roundup: Bungie Aerospace, FamilyVille, Funding, & More

Bungie Aerospace to Help Smaller Mobile & Social Game Developers — Halo developer Bungie Studios has launched a new initiative called Bungie Aerospace, reports Kotaku. Through Aerospace, Bungie will provide small social and mobile game developers with strategic help in the forms of funding, testing, and publicizing indie games.

Along with IPO, Zynga May Be Working on New Title Called FamilyVille — Fusible has come across what may be Zynga’s next title, FamilyVille. The post highlights a shifting of domain ownership for from its original owner to Rob Holmes of IPCybercrime, the company that acquired for Zynga last year. Additional clues come in the form of switches in the domain to a name server in which other Zynga domains sit.

Rixty Announces Wild Weekly Giveaway — Cash-based payment platform Rixty has announced a new summer promotion dubbed the Wild Weekly Giveaway. Users can visit the promotion’s page and enter for free to win $50 in Rixty virtual currency as well as “special bonus items” from various game publishers. Drawings will be held weekly until September 2nd with 25 winners announced on Rixty’s Facebook page every Friday.

Heyday Games Acquired by eGames — In acquisition news, casual games publisher eGames has acquired social games developer Heyday Games this week, making eGames one of very few publicly-traded social game companies. As part of the acquisition, Heyday CEO Gene Mauro will join eGames as its president and COO, while former Heyday chief creative officer F.J. Lennon will be charged with the development of future games.

Live Gamer to Run Monetization for Sid Meier’s Civilization World — 2K Games is slated to release the long-awaited Sid Meier’s Civilization World to Facebook in the immediate future. Monetization solutions provider Live Gamer has announced that it will power the upcoming game’s virtual goods monetization.

TeePee Games Partners with HitPoint — Social, mobile, and online Flash games discovery platform TeePee Games has announced its new partnership with developer HitPoint this week to make the developer’s titles available one the former’s platform.

“Social Games [Aren’t] Actually Social” — In a Gamelab 2011 speech covered by Gamasutra, multi-user dungeon co-creator Richard Bartle states the popular, if wrong-headed, argument that social games aren’t social. He also says they’re not fun.

Social Point Raises €2.4 million — Barcelona-based game developer Social Point announced a €2.4 million ($3.4 million) round of funding, TechCrunch reports. We’ve been watching the developer’s titles get a bump to traffic for the past two weeks.

Friendster Relaunches With Focus On Social Gaming — Social game developers can now migrate their offerings to the newly-relaunched social networking site, as spotted by Gamasutra. Like Tagged, the emphasis on games is hard to miss.

Tictacti Secures Funding To Take On Heyzap In Game AggregationTechCrunch says the new white label solution is looking to challenge existing mobile/web/IPTV game aggregators Mochi Media and heyzap with a $500,000 round of fudning led by Kima Ventures. This brings the start-up’s total funding to $1.6 million.

Blizzard’s New Trial Mode for World of Warcraft Experiments With Free-to-Play ModelPC Gamer breaks down the new trial version of massively multiplayer role-playing game, World of Warcraft, which is another tentative step on the part of Blizzard toward a free-to-play model. Should the developer actually commit to the model, it could significantly impact the current free-to-play market.

EVE Microtransaction Leak Leads To Player Revolt That Could Cost $1 million — In other MMO news out of Develop, a leaked memo from Eve Online developer CCP that hinted at a forthcoming microtransaction model for the game has caused a player revolt that could cost CCP up to $1 million in lost subscriber revenues.