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FarmVille Was So Popular, But Its Formula for Success Was Nothing New

Diesen Artickel einschätzen No browser game was as popular or successful as FarmVille, a farming game developed by Zynga. However, its formula for success was nothing new, but it managed to set the stage for similar gameplay mechanics in the future. Farm Spiele kostenlos - FarmVille Was So Popular, But Its Formula for Success Was Nothing New

Many of the top games in the last decade were browser games. Sure, no one can move on at how good The Witcher III or Skyrim was, but games like FarmVille were more influential. Almost everyone played Zynga’s farming title, generating millions in revenue.

All things considered, FarmVille isn’t exactly a good game. Objectively speaking, it’s just a point-and-click farming game that I find dull. Yet, I’m a hypocrite: I’ve spent dozens of hours playing it as a bored college student, and I did enjoy it.

With that said, FarmVille is long gone, given that Facebook has stopped supporting games requiring a Flash player in favor of Embeddable HTML5 Games. However, even if this iconic farming game is dead and only lives on through its successors, the lessons it taught remained, but if you think about it, its formula for success was not new nor revolutionary. It just managed to do things right.

Appointment gaming

In a nutshell, appointment gaming is the center of FarmVille’s farming mechanics. For example, all those carrots and cabbages will finally be harvestable in eight hours. Once that timeframe is over, you will feel compelled to return to the game, harvest your crops, and start sowing again. Rinse and repeat, and it further escalates the larger your farm gets.

Quite frankly, this has existed even in early 2000s MMOs. Ragnarok Online made merchants vend countless hours, while it may take several hours to craft an item in other games, especially rare varieties.

The only thing that set FarmVille apart from the cast is it was one of the first occasions non-hardcore players, or casuals, dealt with in-game mechanics like these. It was one of the first games some people played, and it was the perfect game for anyone not looking for a heavy time commitment.

Social elements and competition

A good example of FarmVille's social elements

One of the most notable reasons why FarmVille was so popular is due to its social aspects. Your Facebook friends and acquaintances can visit your farm, which, in turn, will compel almost anyone to make improvements to theirs. Moreover, this sparked a bit of competition between friends: everyone wanted to have the best-looking farm.

Apart from this, there are also in-game mechanics wherein you can “help” your friends by gifting them resources and other items. In turn, this coaxed non-players into diving into the farming experience and spending more time than usual in the game.

The satisfaction of rewards

Finally, one of the best reasons that made FarmVille successful is that it appealed to people’s psyche by rewarding them for their efforts. Its core mechanic centered around farming and harvesting, and it feels fulfilling to click away and receive gold from your harvests. With that said, this core gameplay mechanic has existed for a long time, especially in Nintendo games like Harvest Moon.

Overall, FarmVille is a fantastic game, and it did many things right. Its formula for success used tried and tested methods, but Zynga managed to merge them all seamlessly, creating a timeless and viral experience many gaming studios today hope to replicate.

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