Three Melon是Playdom去年3月收购的工作室（游戏邦注：Three Melon在2010年3月时共有45名成员），其代表作包括Facebook足球游戏《Bola!》，几个月后Playdom又被迪士尼以7.632亿美元收购。
迪士尼不久前关闭了内部工作室Black Rock（赛车游戏《Pure》和《Split/Second》开发商）和Propaganda Games。
4）EA Sprts总裁Peter Moore最近透露体育游戏玩家十分青睐FIFA Superstars、World Series Superstars等Facebook游戏，这类游戏付费用户的平均终身价值达56美元。
5）尽管《The Sims Social》的Facebook粉丝页面已经获得了86.8万个“赞”，但EA首席执行官John Riccitiello在最近的电话会议中却表示，他们现在仍不可透露该游戏的具体发布日期。
6）第三人称惊悚游戏《Shadows of the Damned》负责人Massimo Guarini日前表示，他认为比起含有多人模式功能的游戏，目前的单人游戏售价确实太高了（游戏邦注：Massimo Guarini已离开Grasshopper Manufacture公司，并于本月初创办了自己的公司Ovosonico Productions）。
1）Facebook working to bring Credits to mobile browsers [Rumor]
by Joe Osborne
The rumored Project Spartan, Facebook’s HTML5-centric effort to escape the App Store via your phone’s web browser, could make bookoo bucks. Bloomberg reports that, according to three unnamed sources, Facebook is in talks with developers in an effort to bring Facebook Credits to mobile browsers. Couple a mobile version of Facebook–complete with support from app and game developers including the omnipotent Zynga–and a payment platform to support shopping within those games, and Facebook becomes its own mobile app company of sorts.
Purchases made within Facebook-connected apps downloaded from the App Store or Android Market don’t provide Facebook with the 30 percent cut it enjoys on the web, thanks to Facebook Credits. So, it only makes sense that, if the company is focused on a mobile browser-based Facebook offering, that its cash cow would be included. Speaking of cows, it’s rumored that Zynga is working on a number HTML5-based versions of its hit games, including FarmVille, for this new mobile browser Facebook.
Bloomberg event hints at an upcoming change to how new apps and games might be discovered on the web version of Facebook. Citing more unnamed sources, Bloomberg reports that Facebook might soon have a separate News Feed solely for posts related to Facebook games and apps that will appear on the right side of the browser window. We’ve contacted Facebook for comment.（source:games）
2）Facebook’s Ryan On ‘Improving’ The Social Network For Game Developers
Facebook’s director of game partnerships Sean Ryan spoke out on the company’s recent efforts to interact with social game developers, saying, “it’s up to us to continue to improve our offering” to game developers.
Ryan, who previously served as CEO of LiveJournal and online gaming executive at News Corp, joined Facebook six months ago to help the company establish a stronger relationship with game developers, who had historically been left in the dust by Facebook’s sudden policy changes.
In a recent interview with Gamasutra, Ryan said that Facebook took note of these problems, and set out to talk with developers and make the platform a more suitable venue for games.
“As of Q4 last year, we were looking at the game platform holistically saying, ‘now that we’ve fixed some of the issues we had before, gaming is very important to us, so let’s take a step back and look at what can we deliver to developers,’” he said.
“We work with probably a hundred partners directly and the other thousand through more indirect means,” he continued. “This is my question every single day: ‘What feature are we missing on the platform?’”
He also noted that Facebook aims to maintain this developer-platform relationship not only to make life easier for game developers, but also to ensure they remain loyal to the Facebook platform itself.
“All we can focus on is making ourselves a better platform. At the end of the day, the developer has the choice, and if we deliver the way we should, then I’m not that concerned about it, but it’s up to us to continue to improve our offering,” Ryan said.（source:gamasutra）
3）Layoffs Hit Disney-Owned Social Gaming Studio Three Melons
by Kris Graft
Disney has made it clear that it is shifting its gaming focus away from console-focused packaged products and more towards the rapidly-growing social and online space.
But apparently that doesn’t mean that Disney’s social gaming division is immune to layoffs, as the media and entertainment conglomerate confirmed to Gamasutra on Tuesday that it has conducted layoffs within its Disney Interactive Media Group division.
“As part of our ongoing strategy to best position the Disney Interactive Media Group for success in digital media, we continually evaluate and refine our business,” a Disney rep told Gamasutra in a statement. “As part of this process we’ve made targeted layoffs within the division.”
While the rep didn’t get into specifics, a source who wished to remain anonymous told Gamasutra this afternoon that the layoffs were underway today, and taking place at Playdom’s Buenos Aires, Argentina studio, Three Melons. The source said “30 people and counting” were affected, but parent Disney did not confirm that figure.
Disney’s Interactive Media Group includes not only social gaming, but also online gaming, console gaming and mobile gaming. As of press time, the rep had yet to reply whether the layoffs go beyond Three Melons.
Playdom announced in March 2010 that it acquired Three Melons, developer of games including the Facebook soccer game Bola!. Just a few months later, Disney in turn acquired Playdom for up to $763.2 million in an effort to gain ground in the burgeoning social gaming space.
Disney did not detail what the fate of Three Melons would be after the layoffs. In March 2010, the studio employed 45 employees. Disney recently closed down its internal studio Black Rock, developer of racing games Pure and Split/Second, as well as Turok reboot developer Propaganda Games. The company confirmed widespread layoffs in its games division early this year. （source:gamasutra）
4）EA’s Peter Moore: Paying players spend an average of $56 on sports Facebook games
by Brandy Shaul
That’s a lot of Facebook Credits. In a recent conference call, EA Sports President Peter Moore revealed that interesting tidbit, which gives some indication of just how adamant sports fans are about their games, both on and off of Facebook. To be specific, EA / Playfish’s Madden NFL Superstars, FIFA Superstars and World Series Superstars Facebook games pull in an average of $56 per paying user over their lifetime experience(s) with the games.
That’s not saying that each and every player shells out money, but of those that are willing to open their wallets, the number adds up to a $56 average – almost the price of a full retail sports game on consoles. What’s more, this high of an average means that some players are clearly investing far more money into these games to pull the number up, when there are surely other groups of players that may only invest a few dollars.
Moore confirmed that there are far more people (a “majority”) playing these three games for free, which “add[s] to the ecosystem of that type of game.” EA CEO John Riccitiello adds that they believe the low number of paying players may be attributable to the previous need to enter a credit card for each purchase. Now, with the widespread adoption of Facebook Credits, allowing users to keep a credit balance on their account at all times, he says that it “is a growth engine for us and, if you will, a playfield leveling program for Electronic Arts and social.”（source:games）
5）EA’s John Riccitiello speaks out on The Sims Social Facebook launch date… or doesn’t
by Brandy Shaul
In EA’s most recent earnings / conference call, CEO John Riccitiello was questioned about the expected popularity of EA’s upcoming (and highly anticipated) Facebook game, The Sims Social.
While the game’s Facebook fan page already has 868,000 Likes, Riccitiello still wouldn’t reveal just what percentage of the franchise’s user-base are predicted to make the transition to this new social version.
That’s not all Riccitiello held back though, as a launch date will likely never be released before the game suddenly appears on the platform. Why? Competitive advertising. As reported by Gamasutra, Riccitiello explained the company’s decision, both on the lack of an announced release date, and on withholding any predictions as to traffic:
“We aren’t going to put out the stats. They’re highly sensitive competitive comparisons, which is one of the reasons we’re also not giving you a launch date. It’s relatively easy for a competitor to buy all the relevant advertising, say 24, 36, 48 hours prior to a release.”
This, says Riccitiello, would greatly impact (and not in a good way) EA’s chances of marketing the game itself, as its competitors will have beaten EA to the proverbial punch. Alas, for now, that seems to be all we’ll be told about the game’s launch date beforehand, but you can be sure that we’ll let you know when the Sims Social finally goes live. We can’t wait!（source:games）
6）Guarini: Single-Player Games Are Too Expensive
by Mike Rose
Massimo Guarini, director of recent third-person thriller Shadows of the Damned, has said that the current price point for single player games is simply too high, especially compared to those titles which include multiplayer features.
During an interview with GameSpot, Guarini explained that, while single player titles “are nowhere close to being doomed,” they must evolve and adapt to the digital space.
“The problem lies in how they’re produced, through which channels they’re sold, and at which price points,” he noted.
“I can’t see in any way a single-player experience being less engaging or interesting because of the absence of multiplayer. Instead, I can definitely see how players who pay 60 or 70 bucks for a game can be quite sensitive to the lack of additional features that can justify their investment.”
He said that developers must consider lowering the cost of a game, rather than “struggling to pack games with features, extras, bonuses, achievements, in order to barely justify that price tag, which is given by excessively high development and licensing costs.”
He added, “We must learn our lesson from the huge, epic failure the music industry is still suffering nowadays for not being able to adapt to the digital revolution.”
Guarini left developer Grasshopper Manufacture earlier this month to set up his own company Ovosonico Productions.
He was quick to note that his decision to leave had nothing to do with the low sales of Shadows of the Damned. “I’m still in very good relationships with both Grasshopper and Electronic Arts,” he explained.
“Leaving Grasshopper has just been a consequence of some events and private reasons that led me and my family to consider moving back to our country.” （source:gamasutra）
7）Marketers Are On Board with Virtual Goods
Consumers around the world want branded virtual items
The popularity of social gaming has catalyzed tremendous growth in virtual goods monetization. Game developers, virtual worlds and social network providers are driving this economy, which is projected to grow substantially in the next several years.
“Most of the growth in virtual goods revenue has come from the surging popularity of Facebook games,” said Paul Verna, eMarketer senior analyst and author of the new report, “Virtual Goods and Currency: Real Dollars Add Up.” “More than half of Facebook’s users have played a social game, and their virtual goods expenditures drive an economy worth hundreds of millions of dollars in the US alone.”
US revenues from virtual goods in social games will grow by 21.3% to $792 million in 2012, from $653 million in 2011. This growth follows a 28% increase in 2011 over the previous year. eMarketer’s estimates are based on PC-based social games and do not include console or mobile games.
Virtual worlds, social networks, massively multiplayer online games (MMOGs) and social games have thrived within a connected-PC environment. However, mobile is gaining ground as consumers use smartphones and tablets for social and casual gaming.
A mobile gaming study by analytics firm Flurry estimated that, in February 2010, average revenue per user (ARPU) for virtual goods surpassed advertising ARPU. Further, virtual goods ARPU continued on an upward trajectory through September 2010, quadrupling that of advertising dollars that month.（source:emarketer）