Zynga的《咖啡世界》、EA Playfish的《餐厅城市》、RockYou Playdemic的《Gourmet Ranch》和PopCap ZipZapPlay的《烘培人生》都是老牌Facebook餐厅游戏，游戏都是在2009年初问世。上述各款游戏鼎盛时期的MAU和DAU都突破500万和50万，但游戏在过去6-8个月都出现稳步下滑趋势。
其中例外是《Gourmet Ranch》，游戏2011年初，也就是RockYou收购Playdemic不久后，便出现其增长高峰期；当时，开发商推出扩充内容，添加配合英国王子大婚的主题活动。但此后，《Gourmet Ranch》发展也有所放缓，顶峰时期的MAU和DAU数量流失近一半。
老牌餐厅游戏逐步衰退，新生作品开始取而代之。2011年初以来，就有《梦幻餐厅》和《TinierCafe》之类的新作品快速窜升至榜单之中，有时候游戏巅峰MAU和DAU能够突破100万和25万。平台还出现两款新作《Cafe Life》和《Tea4Friends》，仅过去两周，游戏就凭其MAU（游戏邦注：或总体增长趋势）晋升至Facebook 20款发展迅速游戏之列。
上述两个层次游戏提供的是综合餐厅模拟体验，而底层游戏更多是让玩家创造某种特定食物。如《Cupcake Corner》，游戏不仅沿用餐厅游戏共同模式，还让玩家制作糖果，而非系列食物（游戏邦注：另一例外就是榜单中间游戏《Tea4Friends》，该游戏的菜单仅限于饮料和蛋糕）。底层餐厅游戏的另一特点就是转变游戏玩法焦点。以《Cooking Mama》为例，其游戏玩法更多涉及烹饪触觉，而非取悦餐厅顾客或装饰餐厅。
虽然《Cupcake Corner》凭其MAU和DAU曾一度置身榜单中间，但多数底层游戏的MAU和DAU都不足100万和10万。但这些游戏仍旧呈稳步增长之势；我们发现在过去30天里，《Cooking Mama》的MAU和DAU逐步回升至其顶峰时期水平，这部分归功于Arkadium Stadium（游戏邦注：这是一个有趣的Facebook小游戏套件）迷你游戏，其中玩家能够在各自涂鸦墙进行病毒式分享。
Despite Stale Concept, New Restaurant Sims See Growth
By AJ Glasser
Restaurant simulation is one of the oldest Facebook game genres we can think of behind pets and variations on what eventually became Mafia Wars. You’d think after three years, the market for this kind of game would be completely saturated to the point where no new restaurant sims could find an audience — and you wouldn’t necessarily be wrong. A few 2011 entries to the restaurant sim scene are making some headway, however, leading us to examine the top restaurant sims by traffic.
Most restaurant sims put players in the role of a chef or store owner charged with cooking, cleaning, and serving customers in a semi-customizable virtual restaurant. Gameplay progression is tracked through character level, number of recipes unlocked, or via a customer satisfaction rating that fluctuates depending on how well players perform the primary game tasks. Social features in restaurant sims usually come in the form of gifting where friends may send each other energy refills or decoration items; a few restaurant sims also allow friends to visit each other’s restaurants as patrons or hire friends as additional staff. All restaurant sims monetize mainly through premium decoration items. A few differentiate by blending other gameplay genres like farming or treasure hunting into the core experience.
Top Tier: In Decline
Zynga’s Café World, EA Playfish’s Restaurant City, RockYou Playdemic’s Gourmet Ranch and PopCap ZipZapPlay’s Baking Life are some of the longest-lived restaurant sims on Facebook stretching back as far as early 2009. Each game at one point held well over 5 million monthly active users and 500,000 daily active users in its prime, and each has seen a somewhat steady decline in the last six to eight months.
The exception appears to be Gourmet Ranch, which experienced its largest growth spurt to date at the beginning of 2011 not long after Playdemic was acquired by RockYou; at that time, the developer launched a content expansion that included a new gameplay mechanic is a themed in-game event timed to coincide with the wedding of England’s crown prince. Since that date, however, Gourmet Ranch also appears to have slowed down, losing nearly half its peak-level MAU and DAU.
Mid Tier: On the Rise But Still in Danger
As the old restaurant games decline, new ones appear to be taking their place. Since the beginning of 2011, we’ve seen newcomers like Diner Dash and TinierCafe climb the charts at a rapid rate, reaching peaks of 1 million+ MAU and 250,000+ DAU in some cases. We’ve had two entirely new restaurant sims, Cafe Life and Tea4Friends, debut in our top 20 lists of fastest-growing games by MAU or overall growth in the last two weeks alone.
This suggests that while players have become bored with the old titles, there’s still enough interest in the genre to support new games in the market. That interest, however, might not support a restaurant sim longer than three months; we observe that the oldest of these “new” restaurant sims, Diner Dash, is apparently going into a period of decline that began about 30 days ago.
Lower Tier: Specialty Stores Struggle
While the top and mid tier games in this analysis offer a comprehensive restaurant simulation experience, the games showing up in the lower tier are more focused gameplay experiences that usually limit players to creating a specific food. Cupcake Corner, for example, follows the same pattern as all other restaurant sims but only allows players to craft sweets instead of a wider array of foods. (An exception here would be mid-tier game Tea4Friends, which does limit players’ menu planning to drinks and cakes.) Another approach we’ve seen to restaurant sims coming out of the lower tier is shifting the focus of the gameplay. Take Cooking Mama, for example, where gameplay is more about the tactile act of cooking than it is about pleasing restaurant customers or decorating a restaurant patio.
Though Cupcake Corner once saw mid-tier range MAU and DAU figures, most games in the lower tier of restaurant sims stay below 1 million MAU and 100,000 DAU. These games can still show steady growth, however; in the last 30 days, we’ve watched Cooking Mama claw its way back toward its peak MAU and DAU levels perhaps due in part to Arkadium Stadium mini-games that players can viral share onto each other’s Walls.
No matter what’s on the menu for restaurant sims, each seems to struggle with a limited shelf life. Adding new content at a deeper level as Gourmet Ranch did with fishing seems like a good strategy for temporarily reviving older restaurant sims. The newcomers, however, will have to take other approaches to stand out from the crowd of restaurant sims that came before.
All data in this analysis was compiled with our social game traffic tracking service, AppData. If you believe a game has been left off this list in error, please reach out to us in the comments. Note that Nightclub City was omitted due to the fact that the game focuses more on simulating a celebrity lifestyle than on simulating the food service industry.（Source：insidesocialgames）