Zen Of Design

The design and business of gaming from the perspective of an experienced developer

Google+ Games Dies a Quiet, Dignified Death

A lot of talk has been given to the radically quick collapse of the Facebook gaming universe, including Zynga’s recent troubles and jump to the online gambling space.  Left unsaid is that, if you’re a social network other than Facebook, things are probably a lot worse.

Confirmation of that came in the form of this report from Google+, announcing they are phasing out their games channel. I suppose this isn’t a surprise, in that in my limited usage of Google+, I haven’t ever even CONSIDERED playing a game on that platform.  Which in a platform that’s supposed to encourage some level of virality, pretty telling.  Whether its telling about Google+’s viability as a game platform, or its viability overall, is hard to tell.


  1. Clayton Hughes

    June 21, 2013 at 9:51 pm

    I once played Triple Town on Google+ Games, when I was in a facebook-avoiding mood. That’s about all I can say about it.

  2. Google+ is bigger than Twitter now. (Reference: http://www.phonearena.com/news/Google-surpasses-Twitter-to-take-number-2-social-network-after-Facebook_id39150) Of course, Google keeps screwing up a good thing with their constant, clumsy interface redesigns.

    Why didn’t games work on Google+? Let’s look at the origin of “social games”. Facebook games grew because “virality” (read: spamming people’s walls) was super easy. As Facebook restricted “virality” because users got sick of yet another “click here to give someone a cow!” posts, the games waned. Google+ allowed you to ignore posts from games by default, which means the games didn’t have as much “virality” and therefore grow like they did on Facebook.

    Not sure why this is a surprise.

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