It strikes me as ironic that days after Activision CEO Bobby Kotick admitted that his company is hot and bothered by the success of Facebook games a pair of recent MMOGs will be getting a presence on the social networking site. Sure, World of Warcraft has its own application – one that I refuse to use – but Fallen Earth and Runes of Magic will be taking it a step further. Fallen Earth, LLC and Frogster Interactive are producing entirely new products set in the respected universe of the games.
Runes of Magic: The Challenge is being developed as a whole new game for the platform. The app will utilize network gaming and viral communications to instill a sense of “adventure, exploration, and strategy elements” upon players. RoM: The Challenge is being designed by Frogster to lure Facebookers to the free-to-play game by awarding cards with key codes for in-game items.
Fallen Earth: Faction Wars appears to have a different end game. Icarus Studios is developing the title as a stand-alone game with no cross contamination to speak of. But that doesn’t mean the game will stray from its big brother. Faction Wars will have players fighting over nine “conflict towns” as they develop their characters via missions, crafting and even PvP. The same classes and factions will be present, but the characters created will not be tied together in any way. It appears that the game is nothing more than a marketing tool.
Obviously, both games are marketing tools, the companies are just executing the final push differently. RoM is giving Facebookers a reason to check out their game – the in-game loot – while FE seems to be content with just spreading the brand. There’s merit in both approaches but one thing is for certain, expect a ton of additional status update spam on the likes of Farmville’s scale.
Would you like to see the games more linked, possibly even importing characters (assuming security isn’t an issue)? Or can we truly become too saturated?
RoM: The Challenge and FE: Faction Wars are both due out in Q2 2010. Perhaps we’ll see more of them PAX East this weekend.