Game Development Reference
Google+ and Chrome: A Secondary
Market Worth Watching, Especially in
In the next couple of years, Google will almost certainly expand its reach and selection of games featured on
Google+, its social network, in a bid to compete with Facebook. As of this writing, it's still doubtful they can
meaningfully catch up with Mark Zuckerberg's social network as the best platform for web-based games, but
the search giant has a number of trump cards to play, including:
Increased Google+ interconnectivity to its Android line of phones (important to integrate when porting
your game to Android!)
Expanded promotion of Google+ features through its popular Chrome browser
Services like YouTube
Nexus, a Google tablet, will also appear just before this topic goes to print.
Chromebooks, Google's new line of laptops
Any or all of these features could expand Google+'s reach and importance as a web game platform.
Frankly, it's still my own favorite social network—it's pretty much designed like a real-world MMO!
What's more, according to an April 2012 report by the UK web-hosting company Pingdom, Chrome dom-
inates the market in South America (48 percent). As discussed in the last chapter, the audience for web-based
games is notably and disproportionately strong in South America. Moreover, the old Google-owned social net-
work Orkut still dominates in the continent's largest country, Brazil. For those reasons, Chrome-based web
games aimed at the South American market are probably a very worthwhile opportunity.
That aside, as discussed in Chapter 6, “Future Trends and Opportunities for Facebook Games,” it's highly
unlikely Facebook will lose its prominence as the web's main social network. By the time you read this, it will
have one billion monthly users, and the sheer gravitational force of so many users will keep it the main market
for social games on the web for quite some time. This is a pity in a certain sense, because Chrome/Google+ has
the potential to become a better platform for games. But unless Google is interested in cutting a special deal for
you, it's probably best to devote your primary attention to Zuckerberg's walled kingdom.
Asynchronous Multimedia Sharing
Integrated into Games
Draw Something's success as a user-created content game is probably only the beginning of a trend in user-gen-
erated content-driven games. I touched on the reasons for this in Chapter 6 (short version: it's crazy viral), and
you are likely to see more games in that genre appearing on the broader web. Among these could be Creatarr
( www.creatarr.com ), a game developed a couple of years before Draw Something launched, which now seems