Why have all become Farmers (Farmville) and Hit Men (Mafia Wars)?

In the past few weeks, if you haven’t received requests in your in-box to help your friends on their farms on Farmville or help do a few con jobs in Mafia Wars, then you’ve probably moved residence from planet earth.

Consider this: More people play Farmville than watch the Oprah Winfrey show. Players have generated more than 40 million farms (20 times more than the number of farms in the United States), own more than 500,000 tractors, and conduct more than 80 million harvests each day. So far, 1.75 crores in real cash has been raised for charity through the selling of an exclusive kind of sweet potato in the game. On the darker side, over 3 crore people are now part of ‘Mafia Wars’ – a game that makes you kill, rob and loot people. The more your friends help you in ‘supari’ jobs, the bigger you grow in status.

Read this to believe it -

Top 2 Social Media Sites in India Unique Visitors from India in Nov 09 Hours spent on the site from India – Nov 09 Number of 30 sec TV spots that this time spent equals to
Orkut.com 17.5 million 2.7 crore
324 crore


Facebook.com 11.2 million 1.7 crore


205 crore


Indians spent 4.4 CRORE MINUTES on just facebook.com and orkut.com alone in November!

Social Games for the first time seem to be THE PERFECT source of Entertainment. No more waiting for TV programs, zapping ads and hoping that the movie on Star Movies is not the one you’ve seen the 4th time already. This is what entertainment was supposed to be!

The business of Social Games is also a BIG BUSINESS:

The economic model is no longer advertising, but actually selling ‘VIRTUAL GOODS’ (like tractors in Farmville and Poker Chips in Texas Hold Em Up) to consumers like you and me.

Zynga – the company behind Farmville, Mafia Wars etc is now clocking a MONTHLY revenue of 16 million US$ or 80 Crores in sales of these virtual goods.

So, what makes a Social Game really successful?

Something we* call VICTORY:

Recipe elements What each ingredient does
V = Viral


Scope of the app

spreading virally.

I = International


The International

potential of adoption of the app.

C = Competitive


The level of

competitiveness amongst the users of the app.

T = Task


The repeated but fun task

element in the app.

O= Originality How original an app is –

in terms of concept and execution?

R =Regular Habit


How Addictive is the


Y = Youth


Is the app truly for young


*Games2win created an internal team of diverse folks from Art, Sales, Consumer Support, Product Management and Traffic to huddle together and create this benchmark and further rank the top 10 social gaming apps in the world using this metric.

The ‘recipe book’ for social games is a structured approach to help understand the various elements that make the world’s biggest games successful and use this guideline to make great games.

The VICTORY benchmark for the World’s top 10 gaming apps (produced below) brings out the top 3 gaming apps clearly:

No 1 – Zynga’s Mafia Wars (yup it’s not Farmville)

No 2 – Zynga’s Farmville

No 3 – Zynga’s Café World


Game Farmville Café World Happy Aquarium Fishville Mafia Wars Zynga Poker Pet Society
Company Zynga Zynga CrowdStar Zynga Zynga Zynga Playfish
Monthly Actives (Source –


73.8 30.6 28.2 24.6 24.2 22.0 21
FB App Rank (Source –


1 3 4 5 6 8 10
Viral Element (marks –


20 16 14 14 16 12 14
International Appeal

(marks -10)

8 8 8 8 7 7 8
Competitive element (marks

– 20)

14 14 12 10 20 14 12
Task Orientation (marks –


7 7 7 7 9 6 8
Originality (marks –


6 6 8 6 6 7 9
Regular Habit forming

(marks – 20)

18 18 14 14 16 14 14
Total( ON 100) 81 77 69 66 83 67 72


21 3 5 7 1 6 4

This is a proprietary ranking algorithm based on VICTORY that was used to rank the top 7 Global Social Games. The report above, tables and rankings are free to be used by anyone provided Games2win is credited as the source.

It seems the fruits of hard labor are now more enjoyable online than in the real world!!


Originally posted on Jan. 30, 2010 on rodinhood.com

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