Social Games Are Not Perfect But They Are Games, says Reynolds
Speaking at GDC’s annual developer rant, Zynga’s Brian Reynolds bit back at remarks made in various GDC sessions as well as Nintendo President Satoru Iwata’s keynote that social games are unhealthy, evil, or outright not games.
Wearing a Facebook shirt, Reynolds took his ten-minute rant as an opportunity to argue that social games are not just games, but good games.
“I’ve seen a lot of ‘these aren’t really games; they’re not fun; they’re evil,” said Reynolds, also taking a stab at Iwata’s keynote. “Apparently, as of yesterday, we are preventing game developers from making a living.” Reynolds said that while what is or isn’t a game is ultimately subjective, the idea that social games damage the industry “is a very false criticism.”
Reynolds first got into social games because he loved Facebook. He said, “Facebook is a fun place. We socialize there with people we like. I got into making these things because I thought they were the coolest thing around.”
“We get to speak to larger audiences than any one has ever been able to talk to before. No one has reached this many people through games before,” said Reynolds. Reynolds sees social games as being games for all the same reasons other games are. Players face challenges; they collect things; they compete with their friends. “All these things are there and alive in social games just as they have always been there in all games.”
Further than just being games, Reynolds thinks social games are good games as they allow their players to socialize with each other. “We are doing our players a service. We are giving them a reason to socialize with each other,” he said. “We are starting their conversations.”
Reynolds did leave room for some of the criticism leveled at social games, admitting that the sector is still young and figuring things out. “Where we are is not where we want to be, but I can tell you, with twenty years industry experience, they are games. They are innovative and they are exciting.”（source:industrygamers）