It was inevitable. Like Facebook before it, Google+ will have games.
The online search leader recently announced their plans to “gradually roll out” gaming on their social network, which launched in June. “The experiences we have together are just as important to our relationships. We want to make playing games online just as fun, and just as meaningful, as playing in real life,” said Senior Vice President of Engineering Vic Gundotra in the official Google blog.
Presumably to prevent the glut of notifications that clog gamers’ Facebook feeds, Google+ games will be confined to a separate feed away from the already segregated Circles of Friends, Families, and Acquaintances. A separate post in the Google+ Platform blog stressed a curation process of “quality before quantity,” though it encouraged developers to submit requests for the APIs, which have already been given to a select few partners.
Google will likely move swiftly to welcome worthwhile partners, given the success of games on Facebook. A Nielsen study last year showed that social networks and online games take up a third of the average American’s time online.
Games already on the docket for Google+ include Angry Birds, Bejeweled Blitz, Zynga Poker, and Dragon Age Legends. Facebook games such as FarmVille thrive on their interaction with users’ news feeds, so it will be interesting to see how well similar games fare on Google’s more strictly delineated platform. There’s also the matter of anyone using Google+, but that’s a larger question the two month-old service has yet to answer.