1）社交游戏巨头Zynga日前收购手机工作室Wonderland Software，公司版图扩张至英国，Wonderland现变身Zynga Mobile UK。虽然双方均未公开具体收购条款，但据Zynga透露，公司只收购工作室团队和某些作品，Wonderland最炙手可热的iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad游戏《Godfinger》并未包含于收购内容之中。Wonderland成立于2009年，汇集了众多来自英国各大开发工作室的经验丰富人士，其中包括Lionhead、Codemasters和Bullfrog。Wonderland首席执行官Matthew Wiggins将担任Zynga Mobile UK总经理。这是Zynga过去11个月第13次开展工作室收购/人才引进。
2）手机社交网络公司PapayaMobile通过B轮融资筹得资金1800万美元（游戏邦注：资金主要来自中国凯旋创投和社交游戏投资公司DCM），旨在促使现有用户1500万的社交平台朝Android和iOS设备扩展。PapayaMobile在北京、旧金山和伦敦均设有办公地点，但公司目前仍旧主要瞄准美国和欧洲市场，虽然许多投资者均认为亚洲市场潜力无限。PapayaMobile的社交SDK（软件开发工具包）和Papaya Game Engine应用于350多款手机游戏之中。公司现已于Android Marketplace投放了56款免费游戏。
3）《Gardens of Time》位居本周DAU增长迅速游戏榜单之首完全是意料之中，虽然《Gardens of Time》增势迅猛，游戏似乎也开始出现下滑趋势，游戏过去几天的DAU已有所流失，但隐藏物品游戏的DAU绝不会90万封顶，所以游戏未来有望持续增长。本周有6款非英语游戏荣登榜单之中，分别是《開心水族箱》、《แฮปปี้เกาะ》、《แฮปปี้คนเลี้ยงหม》、《 開心農場》、《Perro Saltarín》和《Revienta el teclado》。这些游戏大多为基本的身份识别游戏，功能相对同类英语游戏来说略显粗浅。但是，这一现象表明，Facebook游戏并非仅面向北美用户，游戏未来将同平台本身一样扩散至世界各地。
4）Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation日前投资2000多万美元用于开发教学工具和游戏，旨在美国教育水平。本次捐款包含用于3个游戏相关项目，目的均是为了提高美国教育，其中包括投资260万美元于Digital Youth Network的iRemix，这是一款教授儿童创造性写作的应用，资助Institute of Play 250万美元（游戏邦注：其主要致力于开发基于游戏的教学工具和游戏设计课程），以及捐助Quest Atlantis 260万美元，用于开发提高儿童数学、阅读和科学学习能力的视频游戏。
5）社交游戏发行商RockYou日前同Loot Drop（游戏邦注：其未来几个月将推出首款游戏《Cloudforest Expedition》）签署了第二份合作协议。早在1月份，RockYou和Loot Drop就已达成首次合作协议，RockYou同意投资和推广《Cloudforest》。此次RockYou将采用混合方式推广故事探险游戏《Cloudforest Expedition》，RockYou将于Facebook及其他平台刊登广告，并同其他游戏展开交叉推广。RockYou和Loot Drop均认为社交游戏的未来在于提高体验质量，而非一味挖掘新用户。此外，《Cloudforest Expedition》将采用Facebook Credits作为游戏支付工具。
1）Zynga Acquires UK Mobile Studio Wonderland
Social gaming giant Zynga has expanded to the UK with it latest acquisition, mobile developer Wonderland Software (GodFinger), which will now operate as Zynga Mobile UK.
Neither firm disclosed financial terms for the acquisition, but Zynga says it is only taking on Wonderland Software’s team and select properties. The studio’s most popular iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad game Godfinger is not included in the deal.
Founded in 2009, Wonderland boasts an experienced staff pulled from various UK developers, such as Lionhead, Codemasters, and Bullfrog. The developer’s chief executive, Matthew Wiggins, will remain with the team and serve as general manager for Zynga Mobile UK.
This marks Zynga’s thirteenth studio or talent acquisition in the past eleven months. In April alone, the company absorbed Wonderland, and the San Francisco-based teams from FooBrew (JamLegend) and MarketZero (PokerTableRatings).
Its other recent purchases include Beijing’s XPD, Austin’s Challenge Games, Tokyo’s Unoh Games, Boston’s Conduit Labs and Floodgate Entertainment, Frankfurt’s Dextrose AG, Dallas’ Bonfire Studios, McKinney’s (Texas) Newtoy Inc., Redwood City’s Flock, and New York City’s Area/Code.
“Wonderland Software has always been dedicated to pursuing big and creative ideas and turning them into games that players love,” says Wiggins. “We are thrilled to continue our vision as part of the Zynga family and to reach millions of mobile players across a spectrum of devices.” （Source：Gamasutra）
2）PapayaMobile Secures $18 Million For Mobile Social Gaming Network Expansion
Mobile social gaming network PapayaMobile has attracted $18 million in a new round of Series B investment funding focused on expanding its network of 15 million users across Android and iOS.
The new funding, led by China’s Keystone Ventures and global social game-focused investor DCM, is meant to further accelerate user growth that is at 375 percent since the network’s launch last June.
With offices in Beijing, San Francisco and London, PapayaMobile has been primarily focused on the U.S. and European markets thus far, though investors and principles see potential for further growth in Asia.
“Android growth in China over the next two years will be staggering,” said Keystone founder and managing partner Joe Zhou. “Couple this growth with the monetization potential of mobile games in China and we believe PapayaMobile is well positioned to be the leader in social gaming platforms for the largest mobile market in the world.”
“As our momentum on Android continues to grow, our latest funding from Keytone Ventures, an expert in the Chinese mobile market, and DCM, a pioneer in the gaming and social network investment space, will help us continue to expand our social network across the globe,” said PapayaMobile CEO and co-founder Si Shen.
PapayaMobile’s social SDK and Papaya Game Engine are used in over 350 mobile games, the company said, and the service also directly offers 56 free-to-play titles through the Android Marketplace.（Source：Gamasutra）
3）Foreign Language Games Filling Slots on This Week’s List of Fastest Growing Facebook Games by DAU
It should be no surprise that Gardens of Time is the fastest growing game this week in terms of daily active users. This Playdom game has been growing quickly but appears to be starting to level off. According to AppData, our platform for monitoring the growth metrics of the top games on Facebook, Gardens of Time has actually lost DAU for the past few days. There is definitely a higher ceiling than 900,000 DAU for hidden object games, so we might still see more growth for the game.
There are six games in the leaderboard this week that are not in the English language. This includes 開心水族箱 (My Fishbowl), แฮปปี้เกาะ (Happy Aquarium, but not the Crowdstar title), แฮปปี้คนเลี้ยงหม (Love & Pork), 開心農場 (Happy Farm), Perro Saltarín (Jumping Dog), and Revienta el teclado (Keyboard Bursts). Many of these are basic sim games that are much shallower in terms of features compared to English language games in the same genre. However, it is going to show that Facebook games are not just a North American phenomenon, that they truly have potential to spread just as far as Facebook itself has grown.
Stay tuned for our look at the top emerging Facebook games on Friday, and the top games by MAU next Monday.
The data in this post comes via AppData, our data service tracking growth and trends across the Facebook platform.（Source：insidesocialgames）
4）Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Invests Over $20M In Educational Tools And Games
As part of a series of investments to improve education in America, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has invested over $20 million in developing tools and games for improving education.
The donation includes money invested in three distinct game-based projects, each of which aim to improve education standards throughout America.
The organization invested $2.6 million in the Digital Youth Network’s iRemix, an application that teaches children about skills such as creative writing, awarding them with badges as they progress though a range of difficulty levels.
$2.5 million dollars went to the Institute of Play, which will build game-based teaching tools and game design curricula for a variety of teaching environments.
Finally, the Gates Foundation gave $2.6 million to Quest Atlantis for creating video games that help children become more proficient in math, reading and science.
The Gates Foundation noted that these three projects will all support the Common Core State Standards for learning.
The foundation’s other education-based investments include digital courses for students and other methods of teachings that rely on video, interactive software, social media, and print.（Source：Gamasutra）
5）RockYou Signs Developer Loot Drop for a Second Game, First Game Cloudforest Expedition Due Out in Summer
Social game publisher RockYou announced a second contract with developer Loot Drop today, several months ahead of releasing the studio’s first game, Cloudforest Expedition.
RockYou and Loot Drop originally got together in January when the publisher agreed to fund and distribute Cloudforest. Since that time, the studio, founded by video games industry veteran John Romero, has been staffing up with other designers and developers from the traditional video games industry. In our recent interview with Loot Drop developer Brenda Brathwaite, we learned that the studios first game would launch on Facebook in summer. Today, beyond disclosing the title, the studio is also sharing another tidbit of information: The game is a story-driven exploration adventure. RockYou’s Jonathan Knight, senior vice president of games, said it decided to commission the additional game after seeing the performance of Cloudforest in alpha testing.
With Cloudforest Expedition, RockYou plans to use a “cocktail” approach to marketing the story-driven exploration game where the publisher will take out ads both on Facebook and off and leverage cross-promotion with its other games. RockYou’s newest game, Zoo World 2, will launch in May just ahead of Cloudforest Expedition with a similar go-to-market strategy.
Both RockYou and Loot Drop feel that the future of social games lies in quality of experience, rather than in rushing to grab new users. Though Knight admits that marketing plays a very big role in the success of a social game at launch, he’s confident that the real strength in RockYou-published games comes from excellent game design and an organic approach to targeting marketing at the users most likely to stay and play their flavor of game.
“Because if you have a bad game, marketing isn’t going to do a lot to help it,” says Knight, who incidentally oversaw an multi-million dollar ad buy of a Super Bowl commercial for console game Dante’s Inferno while he served as EA studio Visceral Games. “Now that the gold rush for users is mostly over, it’s much more about competing products [through quality].”
On the monetization front, Knight was able to confirm that both Zoo World 2 and Cloudforest Expedition will use Facebook Credits as the premium currency.
Knight couldn’t give us a specific time frame for Loot Drop’s second game, but he says RockYou is looking at a release toward the end of the year, closer to the holiday season.（Source：insidesocialgames）
6）Sibblingz Launches New Version Of Multi-Device, Social Gaming Platform
Multi-device social gaming platform Sibblingz, announced a new version of its cloud-based platform, codenamed Spaceport.
Sibblingz allows developers to create games on Facebook as well as iOS and Android devices, allowing players to continue the same social game as they switch between devices. The platform also offers the developers the ability to monetize free-to-play games with virtual goods.
Sibblingz is part of the YouWeb family, a social and mobile company incubator that created global brands such as OpenFeint and CrowdStar. Over the past year, Sibblingz’s first generation multi-device gaming engine powered two of the top Facebook games, Happy Island and It Girl.（Source：techcrunch）