New Facebook Gameroom Takes Social Gaming to a Higher Level

Fans of social gaming are not as dedicated as the PC gamers who enjoy dedicated services such as the Steam platform and multiplayer arenas; however, this has not stopped Facebook from developing a space specifically for the enjoyment of social gaming fans.


Facebook Gameroom is a new Windows app that seeks to replace its existing Games Arcade section. With the Gameroom app, players will find social games that they can download and play on their desktop and mobile devices even when they are offline.


With this new feature, Facebook wants to increase the potential income it can derive from social games. The social network already gets 30 percent of the revenue from the games it hosts; the Gameroom app seeks to make the social gaming experience more attractive to players.


The Gameroom is also expanding the range of games offered by Facebook. Instead of hosting small JavaScript and Flash games, the social media giant is offering downloads up to 200 MB. This means that developers will be able to pack more content, graphics and strategy as long as their titles have social gaming features.


Virtual reality is another reason Facebook needs to go live with its Gameroom app. The company has made considerable investments related to VR, namely the acquisition of headset manufacturer Oculus Rift. Facebook has hinted at the possibility of games that could bring members together in virtual spaces.


Another strategy that Facebook may likely attempt with its Gameroom would consists of attaching advertising to games touted on the News Feed of each user.


Facebook Expanding Social Gaming Efforts

In 2009, the social gaming scene on the Facebook desktop was thriving. It had a successful lineup of games like Farmville and Scrabble. However, the advent of iOS and Android mobile games curved into that niche market. It seems Facebook is trying to get back its dominance in the social gaming arena.


There have been a bunch of news about Facebook Messenger “Instant Games”. According to a TechCrunch report,’s Shuffle Cat Mini is available in New Zealand, but US users get a download error message. VentureBeat has reported that Big Viking has raised $21 million to build HTML5 games. The Information reported that Facebook is testing asynchronous games. Given all these sources, it seems that Facebook is taking a serious leap into the social gaming space.


Facebook’s previous attempt to win the HTML5 based gaming space in 2011 was unsuccessful because the platform was still in its early stage. Game development on it was challenging. Since then, HTML5 has grown, and it can provide greater performance. So, the games should be better this time.


Even though Facebook “Instant Games” is not official yet, it announced Facebook Gameroom this month. Facebook Gameroom is a competitor to Valve’s Steam with a focus on providing casual games.


The earlier successes of Farmville and Scrabble point to a social gaming market that is lucrative. These casual games appeal to a lot of people who like playing lightweight turn-based games with their friends and family. The strategy of expanding social gaming in the desktop and mobile space at the same time might have a big payoff for Facebook.