Facebook’s Discover New Games Module Shows Users What Their Friends Play

Facebook is a testing a “Discover New Games” sidebar module that shows several of a user’s friends who play a specific game. This new, free discovery channel could make up for some of the lost virality that resulted from Facebook closing several viral channels this year. Therefore, it could potentially help to slightly reduce the reliance of developers on marketing spend to grow their games.

The module displays the names and faces of the viewer’s friends who play a game the viewer has yet to install. The name of the game, its thumbnail icon, and a “Play Now” link appear below the facepile. When users see this implicit social recommendation by friends, they assume their must be some entertainment value in the displayed game, and may choose to click and install it.

Modules have been displayed in Facebook’s right sidebar since as early as 2008, showing “People You May Know” to help users find new friends. Recently, the site began urging users to complete the demographic information in their profile with a “Which city do you live in?” module. Facebook has shown third-party content in the form of official Pages via the the “Recommended Pages” module, but now game developers can also benefit from the modules.

Developers have been requesting additional viral, communication, and discovery channels from Facebook since it has taken other steps to limit the organic viral growth of applications over the last year. Previously when a gamer published a story about an in-game occurence, such as winning a virtual good or leveling up, it could be seen by all their friends, generating fresh leads to the game. But in September Facebook changed the news feed to only show these stories to a user’s friends who already play that game, limiting their worth to re-engaging users, not scoring new ones.

Facebook has since began publishing “Discovery” news feed stories when a user first installs a game, and now offers featured placement in the Games Dashboard as an incentive to developers who use Facebook Credits as their exclusive payment platform. Discover New Games won’t fully restore organic growth rates, but will augment other viral and marketing efforts of developers. The module will also reveal to non-gamers that more of their friends are gamers than they might have thought, legitimizing game play.

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5 Responses to “Facebook’s Discover New Games Module Shows Users What Their Friends Play”

  1. Nueva funcionalidad de Facebook: Juegos que juegan tus amigos | GeeksRoom says:

    [...] Según informan en la fuente, es una caja en la barra lateral derecha que se llama “Discover New Games“.  A continuación la pueden ver en una imagen que tomó el blog Inside Facebook. [...]

  2. Ver los juegos que juegan mis amigos en Facebook | Vidapixel says:

    [...] Como según informan en la fuente, esta es una pequeña caja que se muestra en la barra lateral, la cual se llama “Discover New Games“.  Ahora les mostrare una imagen de este pequeño cuadro que fue sacada en el blog de Inside Facebook. [...]

  3. Facebook now shows you what games your friends are playing | ZDNet says:

    [...] Facebook has started testing a new sidebar module that shows you what games your friends are playing. “Discover New Games” is a small box that shows up on the right-hand side of a user’s Facebook page, in the same area where you might otherwise see the “People You May Know” module, according to Inside Facebook. [...]

  4. Engage Digital Wrap-Up For The Week Of March 19, 2011 | EngageDigital says:

    [...] Facebook’s Discover New Games Module Shows Users What Their Friends Play: After taking numerous viral channels away from Facebook developers, Facebook is adding a new one called the “Discover New Games” module that displays to a user what their friends are playing. Developers have requested new viral channels from Facebook ever since the old ones were disabled. [...]

  5. Новости сетей | inSocialPlay — блог о социальных играх, социальных сетях и социальных медиа says:

    [...] сетей ПоделитьсяFacebook в настоящее время тестирует блок «Новые игры» (Discover New Games): в правой колонке [...]

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