1）据Techcrunch报道，为进一步节省开支，Zynga日前宣布关闭或移除了11款游戏：《PetVille》（12月30日关闭）、《Mafia Wars 2》（12月30日关闭）、《FishVille》（12月5日关闭）、《Vampire Wars》（12月5日关闭）、《Treasure Isle》（12月5日关闭）、《Indiana Jones Adventure World》（1月14日关闭）、《Mafia Wars Shakedown》（从应用商店移除）、《Forestville》（从应用商店移除）、《Montopia》（12月21日关闭）、《Mojitomo》（从应用商店移除）、《Word Scramble Challenge》（从应用商店中移除）。
3）据insidesocialgames报道，硬核社交游戏开发商Kixeye加拿大新工作室总经理Clayton Stark在最近采访中介绍了团队进展。Stark拥有20多年的互联网技术背景，曾在2004年与Kixeye首席执行官Will Harbin进行合作，之前曾推出Flock项目（后被Zynga收购），在Zynga工作近两年之后加入了Kixeye。
5）Rebel Entertainment（《Dungeon Rampage》开发商）最近发布信息图表回顾了2012年休闲游戏领域的重要事件：
9月份，战略顾问Roland Berger预测2016年在线休闲游戏市场产值将达460亿美元；Facebook首席执行官Mark Zuckerberg宣布Facebook每月游戏玩家达2.35亿。
12月份，《Journey》以及《The Walking Dead》斩获多项年度游戏大奖；《The Room》成为苹果2012年最佳iPad游戏，《Rayman Jungle Run》则是最佳iPhone游戏，《愤怒的小鸟HD》成为最受欢迎的年度付费应用。
1）Game Over: Zynga Shuts Down PetVille And 10 Other Titles To Cut Costs
Sunday, December 30th, 2012CommentsExecuting the cost-reduction plan CEO Mark Pincus announced in November, Zynga has shut down, pulled from the app stores, or stopped accepting new players to 11 games, with some turning off today. The gaming giant will reallocate resources to more successful titles as well as creating new ones. Along with layoffs, the shutdowns are part of the hard road to recovery for Zynga.
The San Francisco-based company had overextended itself. During its heyday on Facebook it built dozens of games, then aggressively launched mobile games as smartphones gained popularity. It didn’t seem like a problem when the company was preparing for a big IPO.
But Zynga’s share price got decimated over the past year. Investors feared it had become bloated, free virality on Facebook had been curtailed, competitors were proliferating, and the shift of Facebook users to mobile from Zynga’s stronghold on the desktop canvas would break the company. Zynga’s share price is down 3.52 percent to $2.33 from its $10 IPO price a year
To get the company back on track, Zynga announced a deep set of cost-cutting measures, including laying off over 100 employees, closing offices, ceasing to renew deals with contractors, shutting down 13 titles, and significantly reducing investment in The Sims-style game The Ville.
Now the hammer has dropped on eleven of these games. Keeping them alive spread engineers, designers, and product teams too thin and cost money Zynga can’t afford anymore. Those that weren’t shut down or pulled from the app store already no longer accept new sign ups and will stop altogether next month. Here’s the full list:
PetVille – Shut down December 30th
Mafia Wars 2 – Shut down December 30th
FishVille – Shut down December 5th
Vampire Wars – Shut down December 5th
Treasure Isle – Shut down December 5th
Indiana Jones Adventure World – Closed to new players, shuts down January 14th
Mafia Wars Shakedown – Pulled from app stores
Forestville – Pulled from app stores
Montopia – Shut down December 21st
Mojitomo – Pulled from app stores
Word Scramble Challenge – Pulled from app stores
These shutdowns might not seem like a big deal to everyone, but they were near cataclysmic for some players who pumped countless hours and dollars into these games. If you’d spent years tending your virtual aquarium only to have it disappear, you can imagine how disappointed or angry you’d be. Comments from gamers on the shutdown notices included things like “my daughter is heartbroken” and “Please don’t remove petville. I been playing for 4 yrs. and I’M going to miss my pet Jaime….why do you want cause depression for me and others. Why do you want to kill my pet?”（source：techcrunch）
2）EA shut down nearly as many Facebook games as Zynga in 2012
by Joe Osborne
The FarmVille house is far from the only major social game maker going through hard times, you know. EA, the owner of social game studios Playfish and PopCap (to name a few), gave nine of its Facebook games the axe last year. That’s just a few less than Zynga opted to let go of in the same time frame. Conveniently, and respectfully, the publisher issues this information publicly for all to see on its website (thanks, AllThingsD).
This fact speaks volumes not only to the state of the rapidly maturing social games industry, but the over games business at large. First of all, this goes to show that, while the barriers to entry are low, creating a successful, lasting Facebook game perhaps requires just as much finesse as crafting a winning console or PC game does. (At the same time requiring far more areas of expertise than the latter.)
Secondly, perhaps Facebook games simply aren’t they were all cracked up to be before the bubble burst for Zynga last year. Sure, these games can make a load of money, but that requires way more mastery than taking known brands and slapping them on the platform like companies are so wont to do these days. Simply put, Facebook games aren’t the money trees raised with Miracle-Gro that FarmVille made them out to be in 2008.
And last but certainly not least, looking back on 2012 only serves to prove the popular opinion that social gaming is to the 21st century what the Atari age was to the 20th century. Social gaming on the web and mobile is going through the same paces that games did during the crashes of 1977 and 1983, and that trend will likely only continue through 2013, though hopefully on a far less dramatic scale. The end result? Perhaps it will soon be hard to easily define the difference between games on Facebook and those on your next Xbox in 2014.（source：games）
3）Clayton Stark opens up about Kixeye Canada
In early December, core social game developer Kixeye announced it was opening a new office in Victoria, British Columbia, which would be run by General Manager Clayton Stark. We sat down to talk with Stark about getting the new studio set up and what it’s working on.
Stark’s an internet technology veteran with about 20 years of experience, having previously worked with Kixeye CEO Will Harbin. Back in 2004, he delivered Netscape Browser to Harbin (when he was at AOL). He continued working on web browsers for a while; the most recent high-profile project was Flock, which Zynga bought. After working at Zynga for almost two years, he came over to Kixeye.
Kixeye Canada isn’t currently working on a new game, either social or mobile. Instead, Stark tells us he’s bringing new staff on quickly to work on the company’s new platform. As of right now, there are 15 people in the Kixeye Canada office and the team is busy getting the new Kixeye.com platform ready for its debut. Currently, the platform is in closed beta, but we’re told it’ll open up to the public sometime later this quarter.
“It’s a project that was started before we [in Victoria] got involved, so there was a lot of groundwork laid down in San Francisco,” he says. “So we went in and started working with the folks down in San Francisco. We’re doing a closed beta first to get our really engaged users in to look around at what we’ve done and will then open it up for a public beta after we’ve gotten that user validation.”
British Columbia’s recently become a hotbed for game development, both on the social and mobile sides; KANO/APPS is also in Victoria and Vancouver is home to groups like Slant Six Games and East Side Games. Stark says Victoria’s gone from being a government city to a technology city; he tells us the technology sector there is now three times the size of its tourism industry thanks to groups like Microsoft, Zynga and a thriving independent game development community establishing a foothold.
“Technology in general has really blossomed up here,” he explains. “There’s a lot of available talent up here, which isn’t lost on companies. The competition for talent is a little less intense than other areas like San Francisco.”
The government is also making Victoria an increasingly-appealing location to set up shop in, Stark says, thanks to a number of financial incentives that are being used to tempt companies.
”There’s a lot of grants available from the government of Canada. They provide a lot of tax credits as well as investment inducement techniques that mean you can grow a company here.
There’s just a ton of support from the government.”
Much like Kixeye’s San Francisco headquarters, Kixeye Canada is on a hiring streak and isn’t slowing down. Stark says he’s hoping to bring the office up to 40 or 50 people, and anyone interested should check out the open positions currently listed on the web.（source：insidesocialgames）
4）Kids are the key to true diversity in our industry, says Kim Swift
By Mike Rose
“I hope that there’s a little girl out there that sees me and thinks to herself, ‘Oh look! Girls make games too.’”
- Kim Swift, the renowned video game designer best known for creating Portal, believes that the best way to introduce diversity into the video games industry is to teach kids that anyone can make games.
Kids are receptive to all sorts of ideas, she says in a rallying blog post on her website, and therefore can be shown from an early age that their hopes and dreams — including those about making video games for a living — can come true.
“A grown adult isn’t going to change their mind about their inherent beliefs or their personality because someone gave them the stink eye (or an Internet reaming),” Swift adds. “Kids however are impressionable and full of those innocent hopes and dreams that may one day turn into reality.”
“When I blather endlessly about a game I’m working on until my eyes bleed, in the back of my head, I hope that there’s a little girl out there that realizes her dreams are achievable.”
Says Swift, she doesn’t believe that the lack of diversity in the video game industry can be solved in a year, or even five. Rather, she reasons that over the next twenty years, as these impressionable kids all grow up, that’s when we’ll really begin to see change.
Swift’s thoughts come in the wake of the highly inspirational Twitter hashtag #1ReasonWhy, which just over a month ago exposed sexism in game industry.（source：gamasutra）
5）This handy infographic looks back at the year 2012 in casual gaming
by Joe Osborne
In the year two thousand … and 12. (Moving right along.) You know, looking back … 2012 was kind of a crazy year in games. That’s especially so in casual games on all platforms. The folks at Dungeon Rampage creator Rebel Entertainment have gathered a handy dandy infographic that touches on all the landmarks moments of last year in the world of casual games, many of which cross path with not only the gaming world at large, but the pop culture world on the whole.
Remember when Atari started making social and mobile games? Or how about that time when Words With Friends became a board game? Other notables from the year in which the world was supposed to end include when the Angry Birds series reached 1 billion downloads, Zynga saw its first insider trading lawsuit and Amazon–of all companies–released social games. A crazy year indeed.（source：games）