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Social Music Gaming
How music should learn from the booming social gaming market?
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PopCap, Hasbro announce Bejeweled ‘face-to-face’ games

PopCap, Hasbro announce Bejeweled ‘face-to-face’ games | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it

Toy and board game company Hasbro today announced it has obtained the license to develop and distribute a wide range of physical games based on game developer EA PopCap’s properties.

Hasbro says it will introduce two new games in the spring of 2013 based on Bejeweled, which has sold more than 50 million digital units worldwide, and has 2.7 million daily active users on Facebook with Bejeweled Blitz.

Not surprisingly, In Hasbro’s new Bejeweled physical game players will also swap gems to match 3 or more to win. Hasbro’s Bejeweled Frenzy will be a fast-paced card game that challenges players to match gems to build stacks of cards as fast as possible.

Hasbro says the new physical games will add value to their digital counterparts, though so far all it revealed is that Hasbro’s Bejeweled will include a downloadable version of Bejeweled 3 for the computer, and Bejeweled Frenzy will include a code for Bejeweled Blitz on Facebook which can be redeemed for four Rare Gems.

The deal between Hasbro and PopCap comes on the heels of a similar deal Hasbro made with Zynga in September 2012 to distribute board games based on Zynga’s social games, some of which we were able to play in October.

Albin Serviant 's insight:

From Digital to Physical sales : interesting move ! 

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iPad Users More Likely To Buy Games Via Ads, But iPhone Users Still The Most Desirable Audience | TechCrunch

iPad Users More Likely To Buy Games Via Ads, But iPhone Users Still The Most Desirable Audience | TechCrunch | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it
A new report from mobile ad network Chartboost suggests that while the iPad is the best platform in terms of getting return on advertising spend for mobile game developers, the iPhone is still seen as the marquee iOS platform for mobile games,...
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Major Labels almost acting like VC

Major Labels almost acting like VC | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it

It's a tricky ATM for artists, but major labels claim they're still spending massive amounts to break new acts. That is, between $750,000 and $1.4 million, depending on the artist in question. Here's the typical breakdown, as supplied this morning by global label trade group IFPI.

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Why the Music Industry Needs Another iPod Moment

Why the Music Industry Needs Another iPod Moment | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it

The importance of Apple to the digital music market cannot be overstated.  Without Apple the digital market would be vastly smaller than it is now.  With all of the talk of streaming services and the shift to the consumption era it is easy to think of Apple’s iTunes Store as yesterday’s game.  Such an assumption is as dangerous as looking upon the CD as an irrelevance in the present era.  The CD and iTunes combined account for approximately 78% of total recorded music revenue in the world’s 10 largest music markets.   And yet neither look like they are going to provide the momentum the music industry needs over the next few years.  Despite its vast importance to music revenue today, the CD is obviously on a fixed downward path.  And the download is not so dramatically different in profile in that it is the dominate revenue source yet is not delivering the dynamic growth the digital market needs.  Key to this is of course the role of Apple.


Via Yvan Boudillet
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Music games are back, Back, BACK! But they never went away

Music games are back, Back, BACK! But did they ever go away?
This week's E3 games expo in LA has a number of new music games on show but guitars are few and far between, showing how the genre has diversified. Nintendo's Sing is the new SingStar, made by the DJ Hero developer. Ubisoft has motion-captured Usher for an appearance in Dance Central 3. Deadmau5 is on board for PS Vita handheld music game Sound Shapes. And - not a pure music game admittedly - Snoop Dogg has his own stage in Tekken Tag Tournament.

Meanwhile, sensitively-fringed indie boys are also finding their way into the games world, courtesy of Pitchfork. It's launching something called Soundplay, a web-games site with prominent Intel sponsorship and (initially) games based on music by independent artists Matthew Dear and M83.

Every few months, someone publishes a silly article about the 'death of music games', focusing on the decline and fall of the Rock Band and Guitar Hero brands. What's actually happened is diversification: pop and dancing/singing have retaken centre stage in the console world, while web/social games and iOS are opening new opportunities for other kinds of artists.

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Zynga Is A Flawed Company In Desperate Need Of A Breakout Hit

Zynga Is A Flawed Company In Desperate Need Of A Breakout Hit | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it
Zynga's decision to pay $210 million for Draw Something, and the game's subsequent rise and fall, appear to expose a fundamental flaw in the social gaming company that should frighten investors, and be setting off alarm bells in the company's headquarters.
As you can see in the chart on the right, Zynga's daily user count spiked to almost 70 million users, up from ~58 million users, after acquiring Draw Something developer OMGPOP.
However, the buzz for Draw Something has worn off, and now Zynga's total daily Facebook-connected users are back to around 58 million.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/zynga-2012-5?nr_email_referer=1&utm_source=Triggermail&utm_medium=email&utm_term=Business%20Insider%20Select&utm_campaign=Business%20Insider%20Select%202012-05-08#ixzz1uLt3sulu

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King.com's hard-fought battle for Facebook games' second place

King.com's hard-fought battle for Facebook games' second place | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it
While it's going to be a long while before anyone gets within striking distance of Zynga's dominance when it comes to social games on Facebook, the fight for the number two position on that site is a fierce one, when it comes to daily active users.


Three companies are battling for the silver medal -- Wooga, Electronic Arts and King.com. EA's held the lead for a while, but earlier this month King.com broke away from the pack, largely on the strength of its Bubble Witch Saga game.

As it looks to extend that lead, the company is also focusing on what's next. And for now, the field is fairly wide open. The Saga series is likely to continue growing -- and there are other games the company can move over from its Web-based game series. Acquisitions aren't out of the question. And there's even some chatter about a possible IPO.

That 'going public' talk started around the top of the month, when the company's CEO and co-founder Riccardo Zacconi told Reuters he was "preparing the company" for a possible offering, even though it would be at least next year before it made that step.

Alex Dale, King.com's chief marketing officer, seemed to take a step back from that in a recent conversation with Gamasutra, however.

"We have done some internal reorganization to take that [IPO] option if we want to or need to, but there are no specific plans and that is not a focus for the company."

Right now, the focus for King.com is on growth, both in terms of daily and monthly average users, as well as financially. King.com bought its first external studio a little over a month ago -- Fabrication Games in Stockholm. And as consolidation becomes more common in the mobile and social space, prices are sure to rise.

EA's $750 million buyout of PopCap Games nine months ago (with incentives that could drive the price to $1.3 billion) and Zynga's recent $180 million purchase of OMGPOP have inflate the market -- and if it wants to keep its lead, King.com has to be able to compete with those sorts of bids.

Dale didn't discuss the size of the company's war chest, but said King.com is happy with its growth.

"The profitability is good," he says. "The business models are good. We are growing revenues fast -- and by that, I mean high double digits -- and we're investing in developing new games."

Profitable since 2005, King.com has diverse lines of income -- social games on Facebook and mobile (both of which draw from player microtransactions) and web-based skill tournaments, where player can make small wagers of 10-15 cents (which supplements the advertising income).

"We're coming from business model 'A' and we're adding both 'B' and 'C'," says Dale. "If you play Bubble Witch Saga on Facebook, that's a very relaxing experience. It's competitive, but in a gentle way."

But he adds, "The same game mechanic on the tournament side is different. If you play Bubble Witch on King.com and you're playing for a cash stake, it adds a competitive edge."

While King.com has been around the games world for nine years, it was the move to Facebook a little over a year ago that has caused it to see a major surge in popularity. Bubble Witch Saga's DAUs now top Zynga's Farmville by 1.4 million -- but that popularity hasn't come without criticism.

Some players have noted Bubble Witch Saga seems very reminiscent of Puzzle Bobble and taken the company to task for that. Dale dismisses those comparisons, however.

"We are 100 percent using our own IP," he says. "We've been taking the IP we like that has performed well [on the website] and launched that on Facebook."

While the company is regularly looking for new ways to expand its reach, don't expect it to broaden its focus to include resource management games like FarmVille. While they've been successful for other social gaming companies, King.com thinks they're too difficult for lapsed players to return to. Instead, casual titles (like it focuses on) always leave a door open for players to walk away -- and don't penalize them for leaving.

"It's a lot easier to reactivate in a causal game, whereas if you go to a resource management game after you haven't played for a couple months, your castle has been destroyed," says Dale.

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Facebook hints at flexibility over Facebook Credits rev-share

Facebook hints at flexibility over Facebook Credits rev-share | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it

Social games companies - or, indeed, any Facebook application developer - using the social network's Facebook Credits virtual currency have to give up 30% of revenues to Facebook. That's a business model that works for games like FarmVille, but presents more problems for, say, selling music. However, it seems Facebook may be flexible going forward, as it tries to get different kinds of companies to use Facebook Credits. "We receive a fee of up to 30% when users make such purchases from our Platform developers using our Payments infrastructure. In the future, if we extend Payments outside of games, the percentage fee we receive from developers may vary," explains a quietly-amended section of its S-1 IPO filing. How it might vary remains unexplained, but if the terms are good, we could see more bands starting to sell songs for Facebook Credits.
Source: TechCrunch - http://tinyurl.com/c89z67u

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Facebook Timeline for Artists (When Platforms Forget Their Responsibilities)

Facebook Timeline for Artists (When Platforms Forget Their Responsibilities)


Regular readers will know I’m a big advocate of content platforms and ecosystems. Indeed device based ecosystems such as iTunes, Kindle and xBox are the success stories of paid content. More recently these platforms have been complemented by a new wave of ecosystems by the likes of Facebook and Spotify, that depend upon software and user data for walls instead of hardware. Both sets of ecosystems depend upon 3rd party developer and / publisher platforms for success. A thriving platform is one which is defined as much by 3rd parties as it is the host company. But just as a blossoming garden requires careful tending so does an ecosystem. The host has a responsibility to ensure that developers and publishers have the support, processes and transparency necessary to instill the confidence necessary for them to invest their time and resources into the platform. It is a responsibility that does not always come cheaply to the hosts and isn’t always respected to the full, as we have seen with the impact of Facebook’s Timeline on a number of artist app developers.


Artist Timelines are Throttling Artist Apps

Facebook’s Timeline feature is looking like a great innovation from the social networking behemoth and there are many examples of artists, music services and music publications using the feature to great effect. (Take a look at Spotify’s Facebook Timeline for a super cool implementation). However the way in which Timeline was implemented on artist pages has had a dramatic cooling effect on what was beginning to shape up to be a vibrant community of Facebook artist app developers. Latest data from AppData.com and reported on Digital Music News shows that Band Page (formerly Root Music), Reverb Nation and FanRX (formerly BandRX) all saw a steady decline in usage in the lead in to the Timeline switchover date and then a ‘falling off a cliff’ drop on the date itself. All three apps have remained stuck at their decimated levels.


The key reason for the collapse in user numbers is that as part of the Timeline feature Facebook prevented these apps being able to act as the landing page for artist profiles. There is very well thought out reasoning for this move: Facebook remembers only too well the anarchic chaos of MySpace artist pages, indeed the pared-down minimalism of Facebook’s UI was an intentional antidote to MySpace messiness. But none of this detracts from the fact that Facebook has failed to fulfil its duties as platform host. It should have done more to accommodate the concerns of artist app developers and would be well advised to work with them now to improve their lot. Although it would be stretching credulity to claim these apps were responsible for artists switching from MySpace to Facebook, they certainly played an important role in easing the transition for many.


Being a Platform Means Looking Out for the Small Guys Too

If Facebook is serious about becoming a platform for music, it needs to ensure that it doesn’t just lay out the red carpet for Swedish streaming services. The value of Facebook as a music platform will come from the functionality, utility and experience delivered by 3rd party apps that help artists differentiate the way they engage with fans. Apps such as Band Page, Reverb Nation, Fan RX and Bopler Games. Ensuring that strategic priorities can be implemented without destroying the livelihoods of developers is a key responsibility of platform hosts. Of course sometimes hosts patently ignore the responsibility and use app developers as free R&D – just think about the number of times Apple has killed off app companies by integrating their functionality directly into iOS. But even Apple knows you can only do that so many times before you risk killing the proverbial golden goose.

I continue to maintain that Facebook’s platform strategy is subtly brilliant, and in the bigger scheme of things the artist app Timeline debacle is pretty small fry. But if Facebook is to establish itself as a genuine music platform it must learn from the lessons Band Page et al are painfully teaching.

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Spotify launches Facebook Timeline for music

Spotify launches Facebook Timeline for music | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it

Spotify launches Facebook Timeline for music
Facebook's recently introduced Timeline for brands has given someone at Spotify a good idea. The streaming service is using the feature to provide a history of music stretching all the way back to 1001. "We've decided to turn our fan page into a destination where you can discover and listen to the history of music," explains the company. "If you're looking to learn when Frank Sinatra released his first album, what year Monteverdi was born, when Britney released ...Baby One More Time, what were the biggest music stories in 1969, or just how old you were when L'il Wayne put out Tha Carter III then we've got you covered." So while the last couple of years on the Timeline has Spotify's posts to its Facebook fans, there are now landmarks for the last millennium, starting with the Organum Experiments in 1001. A clever idea.
Link - https://www.facebook.com/Spotify

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Zynga acquires OMGPOP

Zynga acquires OMGPOP | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it

Zynga confirmed today that it has acquired OMGPOP, the developer behind hit mobile title Draw Something.


Zynga detailed the acquisition in a press call with OMGPOP CEO Dan Porter, who now serves as vice president and general manager of Zynga New York. This studio formed a year ago with the Area/Code acquisition.

During the call, Porter promised that Draw Something will not change now that OMGPOP is a part of Zynga’s game catalog. The game has surged to — and stayed at — the top of the paid app charts for the iPhone since its launch six weeks ago.

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Zynga No Longer Has The Biggest Game On Facebook By Daily Users

Zynga No Longer Has The Biggest Game On Facebook By Daily Users | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it
Here’s a crazy turn of events: Zynga no longer has the biggest game on Facebook by daily active users.


OMGPOP, the New York-based casual gaming company that has had a huge comeback in the last month, now has the top spot for daily usage with its Pictionary-like game Draw Something.


In the last couple of days, Draw Something just edged past Zynga’s Words With Friends to take the top spot for a game in terms of users on the AppData leaderboard, which is a tracking service for apps on the Facebook platform. Draw Something now has 10.8 million daily users who are logged in through Facebook, compared to Words With Friends, which has 8.6 million daily active users. (If you look at monthly usage, the picture is different with Zynga’s CityVille and Texas Holdem Poker on top. But game developers tend to focus on daily usage since it often correlates better with monetization.) The company told us a few days ago that it had just passed 25 million registered users and popped above 10 million daily active users a week ago.

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Chris DeWolfe Talks SGN And The Mobile Gaming Gold Rush

Chris DeWolfe Talks SGN And The Mobile Gaming Gold Rush | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it
Chris DeWolfe is not resting on his laurels after his big-name success as a co-founder of Myspace.


For a lot of people, Chris DeWolfe is still best known as the co-founder of pioneering social network Myspace — but even with that big name success under his belt, it’s fair to say he is not resting on his laurels just yet. For the past two years he has been heads down building an increasingly powerful social gaming company SGN, which was recently previously known as MindJolt, that is aiming to give Zynga a run for its money by making games that bridge Facebook, mobile and the web.

We talked to DeWolfe this weekend at the South By Southwest Interactive conference. You can watch the interview in the video above to see him discuss the lessons he learned after selling Myspace to NewsCorp, why Zynga and Facebook could start to lose an edge post-IPO, SGN’s huge female following, and more.

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Playtime’s not over: Why European social and mobile gaming companies thrived in 2012

Playtime’s not over: Why European social and mobile gaming companies thrived in 2012 | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it
A few weeks ago at Le Web Paris 2012, I had the pleasure of moderating a panel with two founders of rapidly growing social and mobile gaming companies, along with Julien Codorniou, ...
Albin Serviant 's insight:

Europe rocks ! 

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The Mobile Transition: Why Facebook Developers Are Making the Shift

The Mobile Transition: Why Facebook Developers Are Making the Shift | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it
The Facebook market is transitioning; its power players have reached out and embraced mobile and tablet versions of their games. Buoyed by an opening of the floodgates on the viral channels enabled by Facebook itself earlier this year, today's top-tier developers now say it's essential to support these platforms with native apps that hook into the Facebook versions of their games.

"From a user perspective, seamless play, I believe, is going to be a standard of the future," says Riccardo Zacconi, CEO of Facebook's number two developer, King.com. Meanwhile, Jens Begemann, CEO of number three developer Wooga, tells Gamasutra that "now, we have roughly 60 percent of our employees working on mobile, 40 percent on Canvas."

"It's not about 'either/or', it's about 'and.' With the platform we've deployed on iOS, and certainly Android as well, we now have the same platform available across all three channels, and that's where we're focusing," said Facebook's director of Game Partnerships, Sean Ryan, at a recent event Gamasutra attended at the company's headquarters.

How did this happen, and why is it taking off so quickly? Clearly, smartphones and tablets are reaching ever-larger audiences; as long ago as last December, half of Facebook's user base was accessing the social network via phones.
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The Top 10 Truths Of The Music Business

The Top 10 Truths Of The Music Business

1. Music matters more than ever: the music market is alive and vibrant.

2. The record business is not the same as the music business.

3. The artists are the brands, and entertainment is the main attraction.

4. Artists and their managers will shape the future.

5. Publishing income is a crucial income stream.

6. Radio is no longer the primary way that people discover new music.

7. Digital niche marketing outperforms mass marketing.

8. Customers demand—and get—increasing convenience and value.

9. The current pricing model goes out the window.

10. Music is mobile, and new models will embrace a more liquid view of music.

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Making Music: Pugs Luv Beats' Theory and Fun

Making Music:  Pugs Luv Beats'  Theory and Fun | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it
A developer of the IGF-nominated game Pugs Luv Beats explains how music technology and theory was married to cute and colorful gameplay to create a surprising blend of avant-garde musicianship and accessible fun.
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Xbox Music service announced, coming to Xbox, Windows Phone, and Windows 8

Xbox Music service announced, coming to Xbox, Windows Phone, and Windows 8 | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it
We heard that Microsoft was planning to unveil its "Woodstock" Xbox Music service at E3 this week, and the company has revealed details on its plans today. Yusuf Mehdi says Microsoft will release...
Via Jérôme Rastoldo
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OMGWHAT? GREE Acquires Mobile-Social Game Developer Funzio For $210M - TechCrunch

OMGWHAT? GREE Acquires Mobile-Social Game Developer Funzio For $210M - TechCrunch | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it

Japanese gaming giant GREE just acquired mid-core, mobile game developer Funzio for $210 million in an all-cash deal that should boost its ability to build games for Western audiences.

Funzio is behind Crime City, Modern War and Kingdom Age, which are graphical RPGs that have had more than 20 million downloads on Apple’s iOS, Android or Facebook platforms.
I had heard a few weeks back that Funzio was in a fundraising process at a $350 million post-money valuation and had also been loosely talking to various buyers in an auction-style process. Apparently, the fundraising efforts helped tip Funzio into a sale, but maybe not at the valuation I had originally heard about. Still, $210 million is not bad at all, considering that the company had raised about $20 million to date from IDG Ventures and Playdom co-founder Rick Thompson. For comparison, Draw Something-maker OMGPOP went to Zynga for $180 million in cash plus an undisclosed earnout.
Why did GREE buy Funzio? GREE is a multi-billion dollar mobile gaming company from Japan that is trying to break into Western markets. Its profit margins put Zynga to shame, but the company is running out of room to grow as its home country becomes saturated. GREE bought a gaming network OpenFeint for $104 million last year as part of that effort.
But the thing about GREE is that it is a dual platform provider and game developer, so OpenFeint only really addressed one side of its needs. OpenFeint was the platform and GREE needs in-house development capabilities, for which it has been hiring very aggressively in the Bay Area. Funzio should help with this after GREE scouted many targets over the past few months. Early-stage talks with at least two other game developers and platforms didn’t work out for various reasons. They had also looked at OMGPOP, but didn’t move fast enough because Zynga’s chief

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Zynga turns on Facebook cross-promotion for partner game Woodland Heroes

Zynga turns on Facebook cross-promotion for partner game Woodland Heroes | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it

Zynga takes the first step in promoting games published through its partner programs today by adding Row Sham Bow’s Woodland Heroes to the Facebook cross-promotion bar that appears above Zynga games.

Adding a game to the zBar, as Zynga called the tool, seems like a small thing compared to what Zynga wants to accomplish in publishing third party games on Zynga.com. Cross-promotion bars have been thoroughly explored by 6waves, Applifier and Tapjoy (which acquired AppStrip) on both social and mobile — and 6waves has a sizable head start on Facebook games publishing. But Zynga has two features that other cross-promotion networks lack: brand recognition and size (65 million daily active users and 292 million monthly active users on both social and mobile as of Q1 2012). Both of those are key factors driving interest from smaller developers in the Zynga publishing platform.

As detailed on Zynga’s blog today, publishing partner head Rob Dyer says that Zynga intends to drive traffic and test promotions during this early beta phase to see what impact it has on Zynga’s network as a whole — and what impact Zynga’s network will have on an individual game.

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A Race to Challenge Zynga’s Social-Gaming Dominance

A Race to Challenge Zynga’s Social-Gaming Dominance | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it
Good news: European companies are in second and third places in social gaming on Facebook. Bad news: Zynga is first.


Both Wooga, based in Berlin, and King.com, based in London, are now slugging it out for second and third places, according to AppData, a service that measures the popularity of mobile apps and developers.

Riccardo Zacconi, CEO of King.com, says that while Wooga had already pushed EA into second place, King has stolen a lead on them both this week in the measure of daily active users (DAU) playing social games on Facebook.

Nor is this a case of the newcomers on the block beating some old-timer that doesn’t get it. While EA may be traditionally associated with games consoles—a totally different kind of gaming that appeals to a completely different kind of player (young adult males rather than older adult females)—remember that it bought its way into social gaming with the purchase of the London-based Playfish for $400 million in 2009, and of PopCap Games, the maker of Bejeweled and Plants Vs. Zombies, of Seattle for $1.3 billion last summer.

But—and it is a very big but —before popping the champagne corks, let’s not get too self-congratulatory. Anyone remember War Admiral? Or perhaps more recently, Richard Thompson? No? War Admiral was runner-up to Seabiscuit in the 1938 “match race of the century” at the Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, and Mr. Thompson was the unfortunate silver medal to Usain Bolt’s iconic 2008 Beijing 100-meter gold run. No one remembers runners up.

So while these two European companies slug it out for second place, the behemoth that is the U.S.-based, publicly quoted Zynga Inc. utterly dwarfs them. According to AppData, King.com has 10.26 million daily active users; Wooga 10.17 million DAUs; and EA 9.07 million DAUs. But Zynga (65.14 million DAUs) is twice as big as the next three games makers combined.

But hang on, says Mr. Zacconi, we are comparing apples and oranges. “If you look at the actual social games that Zynga has —not, for example, poker games—then its lead is cut.”

He is right, but that still leaves Zynga way out in front, and still bigger than the next three combined. Both Mr. Zacconi and Jens Begemann, CEO of Wooga, point to one reason for Zynga’s dominance. “Zynga was there when social gaming really started to take off and were able to get that essential first foot in the door,” said Mr. Begemann. “That early start has been the key for them.”

Neither CEO said passing Zynga was a target for them. “I am not focused on passing Zynga,” said Mr. Zacconi. “My target is to build a company that is leading in casual and social games, making sure that every game we launch is the best game we can have in it is genre, and focus on revenue and profits.”

But according to Nicholas Lovell, CEO of the acclaimed Gamesbrief, a respected newsletter that covers the games industry, to focus on who is winning on Facebook is to look in the wrong place. “The Facebook battle has been won by Zynga,” he said. “Mobile is the battleground of the future.”

“No one is saying, ‘Guys if we don’t have a Facebook strategy we are dead.’ They are saying ‘if we don’t have a mobile strategy we are dead.’”

But he is keen to stress he is not writing off Facebook and its 845 million users; simply that the world’s largest social network has matured and as such it will attract different, and perhaps less exciting, companies.

“It is not to say that Facebook is not a viable platform for making real revenues and profits. But it is that the race to build a must-have, 10-times return, gaming business on a new and exciting platform, well if you were writing the business plan for that game business, Facebook might not even appear in it.”

And for companies looking to build a long-term future, the Zynga model—get big, quick and then look to exit on the public markets—may be a game plan to emulate.

It is a strategy not lost on Mr. Zacconi. King.com has certainly made no secret of that an IPO is a consideration and while Mr. Zacconi is keen to stress that nothing has been decided, he has put in place the changes needed should he decide to go that way. By way of an aside, he did say that his preferred market was not in Europe—it’s NASDAQ.

None of the players in this battle are blind to the changes. Zynga acquired OMGPOP, makers of the viral (and mobile) game Draw Something; Wooga launched Diamond Dash last year for iOS last year, and King.com is to launch its first mobile game, Bubble Saga, next week, first on Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablet, and then on both iOS and Android two weeks later.

With the growth of mobile, and at the moment the lack of any clear champion, the gaming space has been thrown open once again. If European companies can repeat their belated success in social gaming in this new arena, then the race is on.

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'Guitar Hero' Creator Reveals Details on the new 'Rock Band Blitz'

'Guitar Hero' Creator Reveals Details on the new 'Rock Band Blitz' | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it
Harmonix is hard at work on its first downloadable "Rock Band" game as an independent developer.


It’s been a few years since Rock Band fans have had a new game to jam on with those plastic instruments. Developer Harmonix, which is now independently operated and no longer part of MTV Games, is readying its first self-published music title. Rather than going the disc-based route, Rock Band Blitz is a downloadable game for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 that will connect with the full line of Rock Band games that have been released over the years by Electronic Arts and MTV Games. Matthew Nordhaus, Project Director on Rock Band Blitz, talks with THR about what’s next in the bestselling music rhythm game franchise.


See Interview : http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/guitar-hero-rock-band-blitz-harmonix-309652

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SoundCloud launches Wave Raid web game #socialmusicgaming

SoundCloud launches Wave Raid web game #socialmusicgaming | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it

SoundCloud launches Wave Raid web game
There's a new musical web game to play this week, and it comes from SoundCloud. Launched by Lee Martin and subtitled 'Quest for the Timed Comment', it gets players to paste in the URL for any SoundCloud track, and then play the horizontally-scrolling game. The gameplay involves moving an arrow up and down to catch comments made on the track as its waveform scrolls past. Hypebot reports that the game has been launched to showcase a new 'ontimedcomment' event in SoundCloud's JavaScript SDK for developers. It's good fun: we'll be interested to see if any developers start making similar games for artists using the new feature and inspired by Wave Raid.
Link - http://waveraid.com
Source: Hypebot - http://tinyurl.com/84xfjee

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Music Marketing Beyond the 'Likes'

Music Marketing Beyond the 'Likes' | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it
Facebook's new Timeline features - cover photos for self-expression, pinning posts to the top of a page for a week, clearer friend activity so a user knows how many friends have liked a band and listened to its music - help the social interaction between artists and fans, but the more important features for an artist on Facebook comes through the use of third party apps.


BandPage serves as a one-stop shop for fans to find out everything they need to know about an artist, whether it be tour dates, album releases, or merch information, and the platform also rolled out new features such as the ability to favorite tracks (it also announced last week it hit the 500,000 user mark, making it the biggest music app on Facebook). Headliner.fm pairs artists with othe similar bands and asks them to share each others' posts, hoping to foster a cross-marketing community and gain new fans that might not have heard of a band but that might be of interest to them.

Bopler is a leading social game app that creates music-based games, allowing fans to listen while they play.

"It's great to have likes, but you need to engage fans, and games are a great way to do that," said Serviant. "People spend an average of 18 minutes at a time playing Facebook games."

Engagement was a point that came up again and again, as page posts only reach an average of 16 percent of fans who have "liked" a page. "Likes are great, but where is the engagement?" asked Sider when asked the importance of a Facebook like. "What you should really be focusing on is how to get more people listening."

"Offering a listen and engaging and keeping that fan afterward is the most effective," said Chin, noting that trying out creative posts - incorporating video, photos, and more than just links - and seeing which get the most fans to talk about it is the best way to decide which type of content to deliver. "Never be focused on just the likes."

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FanCake Debuts as First Live Social Gaming Experience for Sports Watching

FanCake Debuts as First Live Social Gaming Experience for Sports Watching | Social Music Gaming | Scoop.it

Mobile Social Sports App Revolutionizes How Fans Watch Sports, Provides Live Social Games While Watching Televised Sporting Events 

As the first live mobile and social gaming experience for sports fans, FanCake is a free iOS app for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad, which enables fans and viewers to participate in televised sports by competing with and against one another, showcasing their sports knowledge, and socializing with Facebook friends and fellow fans – all based on the action on TV.

With the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament kicking off Thursday, FanCake will include all 67 games of the annual March Madness event and host a live, in-app tournament. Fans can play along while watching each game and compete for medals, trophies and win social challenges.

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