How Social Games Are Changing the World

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When you think of social gaming, what comes to mind? Does your aunt constantly send you requests to help her grow corn or raise livestock? Or perhaps she has already moved on to Ruby Blast Adventures or Bubble Safari Ocean?

In either case, it’s no secret that social gaming has the reputation of being a total time sink for players and, often, an annoyance for their friends that receive all of their invitations to “join in on the action!”

All across the Web, though, people are joining forces to create real change through social gaming. Whether they’re jumping on board with games that focus solely on doing good or they’re sticking with the old-school games that now integrate social good elements.

Stealthy startups, gaming goliaths, and benevolent brands are all jumping aboard the social gaming for good train. Here’s what we’ve been seeing lately.

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What Makes a Good Social Game?

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While investments in social gaming may be on the decline, social gaming — and in particular mobile gaming — from a play perspective is still on the rise, with the industry seeing a 105% increase in the number of mobile and social games on the market since 2000 and the industry’s biggest boom just last year, when total games skyrocketed from 90 million to more than 211 million total.

Words With Friends, FarmVille, and Angry Birds hold a special place in the hearts of millions of players, but what is it about these games that get gamers hooked?

We asked some of the top social gaming experts about there thoughts on what makes a good social game. Fresh content, familiarity, and valuable incentives were just some of the characteristics mentioned. Here’s a look at what makes a social game a bona fide success.

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Image via WIRED Insider

Now that the Instagram guys have become billionaires by essentially turning 2012 into 1972, we are faced with a terrifying question. Where do we hide the body? No, more existential: what do we do with all of our Instagram pics?? Fortunately, the Instagram craze has…

Trying out some of these apps!

Workin mom dives back into the fun of online strategy … Couldn’t do it without grandma-sister-cousin-husband help. And still typing one-handed sometimes. iPhone = a mommy’s best friend. Rain pouring down, music playing, sitting in car close enough to house for wifi. Thinking about storytelling blog posts!

Workin mom dives back into the fun of online strategy … Couldn’t do it without grandma-sister-cousin-husband help. And still typing one-handed sometimes. iPhone = a mommy’s best friend. Rain pouring down, music playing, sitting in car close enough to house for wifi. Thinking about storytelling blog posts!

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Cuppa

Announcing the GIVE GOOD Holiday Market

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Go NWSE!

fastcompany:

When it comes to funding startups, Y Combinator is an incubation machine. And behind it are founder Paul Graham’s unique insights about what constitutes true innovation.

fastcompany:

When it comes to funding startups, Y Combinator is an incubation machine. And behind it are founder Paul Graham’s unique insights about what constitutes true innovation.