I’ve been playing MySpace and Facebook game apps for quite a while now. And I love ’em. I’m addicted to them.
These game apps are now more accepted by MySpace, and Facebook users. To them, its their pastime. But these apps borrow heavily from video games. For example, Mobsters, which is said to be MySpace’s #1 game – borrows a lot from crime syndicate games such as Grand Theft Auto, Saint’s Row just to name a few. FarmVille is currently growing by leaps and bounds – 1 million fans. It borrows heavily from Harvest Moon, but the bigger scope is that the game is heavily targeted at the 30 – 40 year class. I see a lot of people using FarmVille that has never touched a game console.
I have been asking myself; why are these apps far more accepted than your typical video game? I mean, some games on the market have some sort of Experience Points system in place. For example, COD4 is a first person shooter, yet it has some sort of ranking system that uses Experience Points to gain a new rank – most of these myspace and facebook users know them as “XP” which is a widely accepted acronym for Experience Points.
Another example that strikes at me, is Grand Theft Auto 3, Vice City, San Andreas, and GTA4. The Grand Theft Auto series has an enormous world in which you can build your character from the first minute you play GTA, you start as a small-time thug, and you work your way up to the big-time. And part of the process is gaining XP for your character, and XP for your characters’ traits – longer running distance, higher attack and defense points, stronger stamina, and more. The character development also includes completing missions to gain XP. The reputation system helps increase your XP. But! In a bigger scheme of things is that these games are derived from RPG’s, also commonly known as Role Playing Games.
Not everyone understands RPG’s as a whole. See, that’s my point here. If Mobsters, Fashion Wars, FarmVille, Mafia Wars are widely accepted by myspace, facebook users, then we can expect game companies to come out of the woodwork and start creating similar games. They also can create more RPG’s, and revive the genre from its ashes.
Square Enix is already publishing Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy games abroad, across the world already, but the thing is, RPG’s aren’t accepted here in united states – or other english speaking countries. The problem with RPG’s of the past is that companies put too much stuff into the screen to make the games more understandable. I think RPG companies need to simplify RPG’s to the point where these games are more understandable to the casual gamer.
The other thing they need to do is, move along the flow of gameplay to a point where players can see the action but also know what they hit, how much they hit, and how much they gained. Tales of Symphonia, and Tales of Vesperia are perfect examples of fast-paced RPG gameplay. Simple, and easy, not too hard until the later levels.
Final Fantasy XIII which is Square Enix’s new RPG, instead of using anime-like character designs for gameplay, they use CG-like graphics – which is what most of today’s market wants – awesome, detailed characters and worlds. It uses some turn-based gameplay elements, yet, it moves at a faster pace than its predecessors.
What I also think Square Enix needs to do, is to create game apps for myspace and facebook using the Final Fantasy universe, or the Dragon Quest universe – to gain consumer awareness, and acceptance for RPG’s in general. I think that current RPG companies need to band together and start creating game apps for myspace and faceook to gain acceptance for RPG’s in general, to drive sales for games like Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, Tales of Vesperia, and other future RPG’s.
It doesn’t matter how complicated you make these apps, just use the current formula to make similar demographics as mobsters, mafia wars, farmVille, and other big game apps on the market.
My family never understood why I love Role Playing Games, at all, until these game apps hit social networks. Welcome to our world!
Editor’s Note: This article was written by CarlosX360 (Carlos Morales) and is a copyright of CarlosX360 Co. Ltd.