Majesco高层谈社交游戏《Parking Wars 2》项目由来
发行商Majesco Entertainment今年1月推出了其首款社交游戏《料理妈妈》，同时还宣布将于今年5月份将推出《Parking Wars 2》。在日前的采访中，该公司CEO杰西·萨顿（Jesse Sutton）介绍Majesco在社交领域的发展方向，《Parking Wars 2》制作人Matt McEnerney也分享了新游戏的相关情况。《Parking Wars 2》由Majesco和Area/Code（游戏邦注：Area/Code是一家纽约开发公司，最近刚被Zynga收购）联合推出，Area/Code之前独自发行了该游戏第一个版本《Parking Wars》。
《Parking Wars》是Area/Code和A&E一起开发的小型游戏，它的主要作用是宣传和推广一个停车电视节目，在顶峰时期的每月用户达到50万人。游戏成功地通过病毒式传播渠道，为电视节目带来了许多观众，又将大量观众吸引到了Facebook平台体验游戏乐趣。经过3年的经验积累，我们找了A&E提议推出《Parking Wars 2》。Matt接下来会分享更多游戏的相关内容。
Matt McEnerney：《Parking Wars 2》的游戏机制和原版游戏、电视节目大同小异，主题都与停车和收费有关。你可以把车子停在朋友的街道上，而朋友在你的街道上泊车时，如果车子超出停车位或者非法停车，你就可以向他们开罚单。它采用了相同的核心游戏机制，但增加了深度，支持玩家定制个性化的街道和车子。我们已经设计了一系列的新车型，计划推出每日挑战、每周挑战及积分排行榜。首批玩家还可以获得特别的奖励。
有许多人批评Facebook游戏让人们不得不“讨好”其他玩家或者向好友发送垃圾邮件的特点。《Parking Wars 2》也会出现类似的情况吗？
Matt McEnerney：《Parking Wars 2》玩家并不需要大量伙伴一起来玩游戏。虽然这是一款在朋友街道上停车的游戏，但我们通过定制车子和街道，把少量的帝国建设元素也植入其中，我们会推出更多充分利用游戏社交性的新功能。举个例子，如果朋友的车子面临被罚款的危险，玩家可以帮忙移走车子；也可以安装监视摄像头，一旦车子出现非法停泊情况时，系统就会自动给玩家发送通知邮件。《Parking Wars 2》中会出现智能“朋友”，以便有些缺乏好友而又不想和陌生人交朋友的玩家自娱自乐。
Interview: Majesco’s Jesse Sutton and Matt McEnerney on Parking Wars 2 and Facebook
Publisher Majesco Entertainment’s first foray into the world of social gaming was with Cooking Mama launched in January of this year. With the announcement of Parking Wars 2 to be launched in May of 2011, we caught up with CEO Jesse Sutton on Majesco’s direction in the social gaming space, and with Producer Matt McEnerney on Parking Wars 2. The game was developed together with Area/Code, the New York developer recently acquired by Zynga, who created and self-published the first Parking Wars.
Inside Social Games: What’s Majesco’s take on Facebook and the future of social gaming?
Jesse Sutton: Facebook is really where social gaming started. If you can launch and monetize a game successfully on Facebook, it is your recipe for success. From there you can bring your game to all other platforms. The advantage of the Facebook platform is how quickly we can learn from our players through feedback and analytics. From there we balance the game and iterate.
Inside Social Games: How do you cut through all the noise that’s on Facebook and the number of similar games on it?
Jesse Sutton: As platforms mature, like you say, there is a lot of chatter on the market. As far as Majesco is concerned, it’s all about the brands. We took one of our top titles to the Facebook platform. Without any marketing, Cooking Mama went viral to 800,000 monthly users. We had not expected it to blossom quite that quickly without any advertising, and showed us what brands could do.
Parking Wars was a little game that Area/Code created in partnership with A&E (and self-published on Facebook) as a marketing tool for the TV show prior to its launch and it topped 500,000 monthly users at its peak. The game works well as a viral loop to bring players to the show and back to Facebook. After three years and the experience under our belt, we went to A&E and proposed Parking Wars 2, and I’ll let Matt here tell you more about the game.
Matt McEnerney: The core mechanic in Parking Wars 2 is the same as the original game and the show. It’s about parking and ticketing. You park your car or cars on your friends’ streets and ticket your friends’ cars when they are over parked or parked illegally on yours. We’ve taken the same core mechanic and added more depth. The player will be able to customize their streets and cars. We’ve got a whole new catalog of cars and we have plans for daily and weekly challenges and leader boards. We’ve also got a special bonus planned if you played the first game.
Inside Social Games: Why are Facebook games successful and what do you think makes some Facebook games more successful than others?
Jesse Sutton: It’s the social dynamics that these games inherently have. They are also free to play, micro-transaction and ad-based so most of the game is free. The simple and addictive game play mechanics is the well known “secret sauce” but the utility features such as filtering your friends list so that you know which friends are already playing the game also count for a lot. Further, evergreen brands also have long term viability and relevance. In Cooking Mama, we extended the brand to gardening and crafting in the DS and Wii versions.
Inside Social Games: There is criticism about Facebook games requiring you to “friend” many other players or spamming your friends list. Does Parking Wars 2 resemble this remark?
Matt McEnerney: You won’t need a hundred friends all playing Parking Wars 2 to advance in the game. Yes, it’s about parking on your friends streets, but we’ve brought a little more of the empire building aspect into Parking Wars 2 with the cars and street customization, and will have more features that capitalize on the social aspect of the game. For example, a player will be able to move a friend’s car if it’s in danger of getting ticketed, and a player can place surveillance cameras to send them email messages if a car is parked illegally on their streets. There are also AI “friends” for Parking Wars 2 to help players who don’t have many friends playing the game and who would rather not befriend strangers.
Inside Social Games: To close, what is Majesco’s plans in social gaming world?
Jesse Sutton: One of the unique aspects of Majesco is that we are developers as well as publishers. We are one of the few publicly traded companies that are involved in the publishing of social games. Our strategy is to create games that are platform agnostic, demographically focused, brand focused and our goal for social games to make the top twenty list of Facebook publishers this year.（Source：Inside Social Games）