WHILE Facebook games developers make their profits from micro transactions, the explosion of the social networking site means macro benefits for those who can make their mark on its 300 million users.
3 Blokes Studios has grown through the casual games space of online portal iWin, with its product Jewell Quest Mysteries asserting its presence in the top 10 charts for some time.
The team of four includes John Passfield, who co-founded games giant Krome Studios but cashed in his share in 2005 over creative differences.
Now, with that capital and the success of Jewell Quest Mysteries behind him, 3 Blokes is taking on the dynamic, fast-paced social games market by storm.
“For the casual market there’s a lot of similarities with social games – they’re predominantly women players,” he says.
“While you’ve got your hardcore players for the consoles, for the casual space it’s more women in their 30s, the ‘soccer mums’ as they say in the US.
“At the moment we’re focusing on Facebook – you’ve got 300 million people and the top games have around 75 million players, like Farmville for instance.”
3 Blokes made the decision to shift to Facebook because with the online games portals you can’t set the price and if people buy your game it’s not possible to market directly once you make another.
“It’s different with Facebook, we’ve had 140,000 people play our new game Hospital Town and when we make a new game we’ll be able to contact them about it,” says Passfield.
“Hospital Town is a game where you run a hospital and become a doctor or a nurse, treating fun ailments and illnesses you get like chillbrain, bad taste, a fear of beards, and you get your friends to become the patients.
“What’s interesting about it is that there is a percentage of people who actually pay for items in micro transactions – that might be $2 or $3 a month for these games. So it’s not like when you have a console and you buy a game at the shop for $80.”
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