The social gaming industry is booming right now, especially on Facebook. Companies have moved into the space and are taking advantage of Facebook’s massive user base, which currently stands at more than 500 million active users. These game developers, through their strategic game design and incorporation of virtual currency, have made a killing on the social network.
Zynga is by far the best example of this. Valued at $5.51 billion (with a “b”), they have built a very lucrative business by tapping into Facebook’s user base. In this article, I’ll be covering the most popular Facebook. How many do you think Zynga owns?
Even if you’ve never played a game on Facebook you’ve probably heard of FarmVille. With over 55.4 million monthly active users it is by far the most popular game running.
The object of FarmVille, if you don’t already know, is to create a farm on virtual land. There’s a lot of maintenance that goes into the game, like taking care of your crops and farm animals, which may not sound like much fun, but I assure you it’s very addictive. Literally 10 percent of my Facebook friends are playing this game.
FarmVille is classified on Facebook as a “Virtual World” game. This, as it turns out, is one of the most popular sections of games on the site. Games similar to FarmVille that could easily make this list are FrontierVille (28.3 million users), PetVille (9.5 million) and FishVille (6.1 million).
2. Mafia Wars
The other most popular genre of games on Facebook is in the “Role Playing” section. Mafia Wars (23.3 million users), which I’ve previously written about , is a game in which you control your own mafia. Your mafia is made up of your other friends playing the game, and you can wage war with other clans or build up your empire by doing jobs, fighting and robbing others to level up.
Some other great role playing games include City of Wonder (6.1 million), Ninja Saga (5.9 million) and Kingdoms of Camelot (5.7 million). Crime City (4.1 million) is good too, and it’s pretty similar to Mafia Wars in context.
3. Cafe World
Cafe World (18.2 million users), which I’ve also shown you how to cheat on , is a game where you’re in charge of your very own restaurant.
You can choose from dozens of different dishes and layouts for your kitchen, then you “slice, chop, saute and bake your way to the top of the culinary world”. It’s also a very addictive game, so if you aren’t into building farms or mafias, this is your hangout.
4. Millionaire City
Millionaire City (12.2 million users), aside from having an awesome name, also has a really good premise: build your dream city and become a millionaire! Created by Digital Chocolate, Millionaire City puts you in charge of your own town, and it is your duty to take it from meager to metropolis status.
Sound familiar? The concept is not unlike Sim City, one of the most popular games of all time.
Madden is always one of the highest grossing video games to come out every year, which is why I decided to include EA’s Madden NFL Superstars on this list, despite it only having about 2.1 million monthly active users. This game has not been around very long at all but it is already gaining in popularity.
This version of Madden is very different from the traditional console games. You can still create your own franchise, draft NFL players, build stadiums and attract fans, but everything is done within the virtual space. Compete against your friend’s teams for in-game prizes and bragging rights.
If you prefer the other type of football, check out EA Sports FIFA Superstars (3.7 million users).
As you can see, I didn’t simply go in order and list the 5 Facebook games with the most active users. While that is a good indicator of how “popular” these games really are, it’s not the only variable that factors into the popularity equation for me. I’m very enthusiastic about the Madden NFL Superstars game, for instance, because it is relatively new and garnering a lot of attention.
While I did my best to cover a wide variety of some of Facebook’s best games, there is a good possibility that I may have missed one of your favorites. Let us know in the comments what your favorite Facebook games are so we can discuss them.
Image Credit: Kiselev Andrey Valerevich