每日观察：关注《Thrones of Avalon》项目的相关推测（11.13）
1）据Games.com报道，CEGamers最近发现Zynga游戏《Bubble Safari》页面顶端的滚动条出现了一个“Thrones of Avalon”的图标，其上方还有一个“25”的数字（游戏邦注：这种数字通常代表玩家目前已接到来自该游戏的求数量），但点击该图标后却导入了一个图片（如下图），观察者认为这可能就是《Thrones of Avalon》这款Facebook游戏的预览图。
而点击该图片中的“更多详情”却只出现了一个“即将发布”的对话框。这一异常现象不禁让人猜测，《Thrones of Avalon》究竟是一款正在开发过程中的Facebook游戏，还是是一个已经被废弃的项目。从图片风格来看，该项目有可能是取材于 Marion Zimmer Bradley / Diana L Paxon的“Avalon”系列小说，目前Zynga尚未对此做出回应。
2）据venturebeat报道，Zynga.com日前发布了新款免费社交游戏《Legends:Rise of a Hero》，玩家在其中的任务是救出被一大群地精劫持的公主。玩家可以从游侠、战士或巫师这三种职业中进行选择，完成任务并赢取战利品，最终打造出自己的王国，其风格类似于轻量型的《暗黑破坏神》。
这款“中核”游戏出处Mob Science之手，该公司是与Zynga平台合作的24家第三方开发商之一，之前曾在Facebook推出基于PS 3游戏的《inFamous Anarchy》、《Coffee Bar》和《Snowball Fight》。
而这也正是《FarmVille》等游戏的起源。他认为这些农场游戏实际上就是MMO的后裔。他们曾将农场与锻造元素引进了《Ultima Online》以及《Star Wars Galaxies》中，希望以此让游戏收获大众市场，但结果并不如意。他们随后制作的游戏就摒弃了一些MMO关键元素，因为基于网页的游戏所瞄准的用户群体并没有太多可支配的空余时间，也未必会安装这类游戏的大型客户端。
4）在本周MAU增长最快的Facebook游戏榜单上，Zynga游戏《Ruby Blast Adventures》再次夺魁，新增240万MAU，增幅为21%。
King.com游戏《Pet Rescue Saga》位居其次，新增67万MAU，增幅为156%；Wooga的《Bubble Island》排名第三，新增40万MAU，增幅为6%；《CityVille 2》新增26万MAU，增幅为48%；EA游戏《Jetset Secrets》位居第五，新增20万MAU，增幅为13%。（本文为游戏邦/gamerboom.com编译，拒绝任何不保留版权的转载，如需转载请联系：游戏邦）
1）Did Zynga accidentally reveal Thrones of Avalon on Facebook?
by Brandy Shaul
If you’re a fan of more than one of Zynga’s games on Facebook, you’re likely familiar with the bar that runs across the top of each game’s page, offering quick links to other Zynga games
that you’ve played. Normally, this bar is completely ignorable, as you’ve likely already bookmarked your favorite Facebook games and wouldn’t need to look up to this bar to switch between
them, but as the folks at CEGamers have discovered, sometimes that bar is definitely worth looking at.
While it looks to have been removed now, earlier today, the Bubble Safari game logo in this “zBar” was replaced with an icon for something called “Thrones of Avalon,” including a suit of
impressive armor, as you can see below. Clicking on the 25 icon in the top right sent gamers to Bubble Safari (this number is supposed to notify players of how many outstanding requests
they currently have in other Zynga games), but clicking on the image itself brought up the image at the top of this post, which appears to be a preview image for this supposed Thrones of
Avalon Facebook game.
Via this preview image, we’re told that “survival unites” and “greed divides” before being asked “How will you guide your kingdom?” For the record, clicking on “More Info” simply transforms
that box into one that says “Coming Soon.” Of course, this leads us to some speculation. Is Thrones of Avalon a real Facebook game that’s currently in development, or are these images
simply what remains of a scrapped project? We could even go so far as to speculate that the game could have been inspired by Marion Zimmer Bradley / Diana L Paxon’s “Avalon” series of
novels, as the fonts between these books and the preview image above are virtually identical, and the setting for the Avalon books concerns a British female on the throne.
Whatever the case, this is definitely an interesting bit of news, and we’ve reached out to Zynga for comment. Stay tuned for more.（source：games）http://blog.games.com/2012/11/11/zynga-
2）Diablo-like Legends: Rise of a Hero launches on Zynga.com
Between Borderlands 2, Torchlight II, and Diablo III, 2012 is a fantastic year for games that require you to hunt down precious items and gear to toughen up your character. But if you’re
still itching to grab more loot, the free-to-play social game Legends: Rise of a Hero launches today on Zynga.com.
In Legends, players must rescue a princess from the goblin horde that kidnapped her. Generic premise aside, Legends doesn’t take itself very seriously: Dialogue and descriptions are rife
with tongue-in-cheek humor. After choosing your class (ranger, warrior, or wizard), you go on quests, earn loot, craft weapons, and gradually build a kingdom of your own. It’s like a
lighthearted version of Diablo, publisher Activision Blizzard’s series of loot-based RPGs.
It also uses some familiar social game mechanics, such as an energy bar that determines how many actions you can take per session, as well as a chance to buy premium currency to speed up
your progress. Any friends you recruit in the game become A.I.-controlled members of your party.
Legends: Rise of a Hero caters specifically to the “midcore” market, a segment of players who don’t fit under the casual or hardcore definitions. Midcore titles balance accessibility and
wide appeal with deeper mechanics than the usual social games, but they are not as complex as those found on consoles and PCs. Those who play them tend to stick around a lot longer, and
spend more money, than the casual crowd.
“With the launch of Legends, we are breaking new ground in the midcore social gaming space,” said Michael Witz, the founder and CEO of developer Mob Science, in a press release sent to
GamesBeat. “Our goal was to create an immersive, imaginative world that would appeal to many different types of players, but more importantly, one that would draw people into the story. We couldn’t be more proud to partner with Zynga to make it available to their network of players, adding to and complementing their existing portfolio of games.”
The San Diego-based Mob Science is just one of the 24 third-party developers under the Zynga Platform, where the mobile gaming giant provides marketing, distribution, and technical support for its partners’ games. Earlier this year, Mob Science raised $1 million in seed funding for the development of Legends. Its previous social games on Facebook include inFamous Anarchy (a spinoff of the PlayStation 3-exclusive superhero series), Coffee Bar, and Snowball Fight.（source：venturebeat）
3）Playdom VP Raph Koster has a theory about the origins of social games
by Joe Osborne
The man who has a hand in pretty much all of the games that Disney’s social gaming studio, Playdom, puts out knows a thing or two about gaming. One of the creators of storied MMO Ultima Online, Playdom VP of creative design Raph Koster has quite a few theories about his craft. (In fact, he wrote a book that covers the entire industry and the creative processes that underpin it quite thoroughly.)
Of course, the gaming veteran has a theory pertaining to social games as well. More specifically, he has an idea of how social games might have been born. (You know, aside from a bug in Ultima Online.) Here’s what Koster had to say during a recent interview with Games.com News:
I have this pet theory, and it was really more Ultima Online and also at the same time Dark Ages, Kingdom of the Winds and Lineage made it over to Asia and brought all of that crafting stuff. Lineage and Dark Ages originally didn’t have a lot of that. That crafting stuff met up with some of the traditions like Harvest Moon and things like that that were going on in Japan.
It became taken for granted in Asia that MMOs were worldy, they had crafting and politics elements.
To this day the [World of Warcraft] model is not actually what most MMO models are like in Asia. They have all of these other things like politics, housing and whatever. That market eventually shifted with companies like Nexon and others, who started, I remember particularly in Korea. Korea didn’t have consoles, so console games started getting made for the web by MMO companies in Korea. They had MMO qualities to them and one of them was essentially, ‘Let’s make Harvest Moon online on the web with MMO qualities,’ and that was exported back to the states.
That is how we got FarmVille. So, I actually think that those farming games are a direct descendant of MMOs in a very literal sense. We were putting farming and crafting into the UOs and the [Star Wars Galaxies] in hopes of reaching a mass market audience and we didn’t. Then it turned out that we did later by stripping away the MMO keys. That’s the part that unlocked it, because you didn’t have the giant time commitments, the heavy clients and all the rest.（source：games）
4）Ruby Blast Adventures dominates fastest-growing Facebook games by MAU
Zynga’s Ruby Blast Adventures once again took the top spot among Facebook’s fastest-growing games by monthly active user, bringing in 2.4 million MAU for a 21 percent gain.
King.com’s Pet Rescue Saga was up by 670,000 MAU, a 156 percent gain that allowed the game to take the No. 2 spot. Wooga’s Bubble Island (likely buoyed by the recent mobile launch) came in at No. 3 with 400,000 MAU , a 6 percent increase. CityVille 2 is continuing to bring in respectable numbers even though Zynga doesn’t seem to have turned on cross promotion for the game; the game’s up by 48 percent with 260,000 MAU. Finally, EA’s Jetset Secrets continues to exhibit steady growth with 200,000 MAU, taking the No. 5 spot with this 13 percent gain.
Traffic percentage gains were relatively small throughout the rest of the list. Only two games saw traffic increases break double digits. Plarium’s Stormfall: Age of War was up by 200,000
MAU, a 250 percent growth. Meanwhile, THX Games’ Arabic-language trivia title Saif Almarifa also grew by 200,000 MAU, but only saw a 10 percent increase.（source：insidesocialgames）