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What Drives You Crazy While Playing Social Games?

Date: Oct 14 2010 10:40:50 Source: games.com Views:
KeyWord: social games, facebook games, Farmville, Frontierville, Mafia Wars, Zoo World, Treasure Isle

With the increasingly influential social network in people's life, Facebook games play an important role in the web games world. Take the most popular game FarmVille as an example, it has 60 million users, however, 60 million is not its best number. Does this mean that Facebook games are impeccable? Let's take a look at what the man who had got crazy about the Facebook games said:

Bugs, bugs, bugs

My biggest gripe about social gaming is the bugs. I'm talking about all of the little glitches in games that never really seem to go away. Examples of this include items that mysteriously disappear, buttons that don't work or losing connection to a game. It's like Whack-A-Mole, once one bug is bopped in the head, another one pops up somewhere else.

For instance, I was tending my FarmVille crops this weekend and got the ever annoying 'Game out of sync with server' message, which means you have to reload the game and re-do everything you just did again. So after spending five minutes harvesting and planting crops, then I had to do it again. Then I had to reload the game again. Then harvest the same crops again. Ugh.

Annoying pop-ups advertising virtual currency sales

I've also recently noticed that more games have started introducing random pop-ups, informing me that I've been especially been chosen to participate in a sale on the game's virtual currency. It's all very annoying, kind of like those silly TV infomercials that play on a loop after midnight. No, I don't want a Slap Chop or a Perfect Fit button, and I don't want to buy any Horseshoes in FrontierVille either. The only way that I'm might possibly consider spending my real-life cash for virtual cash is if there was a 75% clearance sale. And that's just to consider it. Zynga games have particularly been aggressive with this form of advertising, and it ain't working for me.

FrontierVille Discounts

Too many extra things to do in a game

One of the great things about playing games on Facebook is that you can get in and out quickly. I can take a break from writing or whatever I'm doing, jump into a game for five minutes, play and then be done. In the beginning, it was easy to run out of things to do in FarmVille and the other big Facebook games. Once you reached the max level, it was pretty much game over. To keep people playing, developers responded by rolling out more and more new features -- special fighting events, buildable items, holiday-themed events, etc. While these new add-ons will certainly keep the average virtual farmer busy, they have also started to pull players into too many directions, rather than giving players a more directed experience.

Accepting gifts ... for hours

Sending and receiving gifts is an integral part of the social game experience. And let me tell you, I like getting gifts, however, accepting them. A few games like Pet Society, Cafe World and PetVille have streamlined the gifting process quite nicely. But, when it comes to accepting gifts in the three games I probably play the most -- FarmVille, FrontierVille and Mafia Wars -- it's a time-consuming affair.

The process breaks down like this: I click to accept a gift on Facebook, then I wait while I'm bounced to the game. Then, I click another button confirming that I want to accept the gift. Then I click another button to go back to my Facebook game gift page (if available). Sometimes I'll accept a gift from someone and instead of directing me back to Facebook, the game loads automatically right afterward. Then I'm frantically scrambling to hit the back button so I don't get stuck waiting for the game to load. Exhausted yet? I am.

In addition of these, is there anything else that makes you crazy in Facebook games?

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