Play Facebook Games Directly From News Feed
By on May 27th, 2012

Apart from sharing photos and videos with friends, Facebook apps and games too have helped the social networking giant to evolve and grow bigger. It has also enabled users to come back more often and stay a while longer on site. Ever since Facebook introduced Open Graph, everything on Facebook has evolved to a greater extent. When it came to social games, be it a developer or a Facebook user, the number of users spending time playing games on Facebook has drastically increased.

Now, things will get more interesting and a lot more fun as Facebook has announced a new feature that will enable users to try out games directly within the News Feed. Facebook calls the new feature as “Feed Gaming,” which enables developers to create a short demo of their game that users can play when they see it mentioned in News Feed and Timeline.

Facebook "Feed Gaming"

The best part about this is that users need not have to authorize or install the app to play the game, and no user information is collected. This is more like a demo version, where users can try out the game beforehand, and if they like it, they can go ahead and play the game completely. Once the user has completed playing the demo, they are prompted to play the full version of the game.

“We’re launching the ability for people to try games directly in news feed. Feed gaming enables developers to share a playable version of their game within news feed and timeline stories, reaching new users through some of our main distribution channels,” Facebook said.

Featured games like Idle Worship, Angry Birds, and Bubble Witch Saga are already using feed gaming to increase engagement and drive acquisition.

Advantage That Developers Can Take

Facebook suggested more ways for developers to engage with potential game players in a post on its developer blog:

  • Competing with friends: Angry Birds encourages people to challenge their friends to beat their high score on a specific level.
  • Rewarding engagement: Bubble Witch Saga offers a higher reward of “coins” for better game play, encouraging people to play and then click through to install the game and collect their coins.
  • Track performance of feed gaming stories: To track performance for these stories, pass in a ref param (for example, “ref=feed_game_a”) when publishing the story, and Facebook will begin tracking that story type in insights for your app.

Developers can know how effective their games are, including the number of players. With the Facebook app insights, it will now show the number of impressions, clicks and CTR of each feed game story. Developers can find more details in Facebook’s documentation here.

Feed Gaming is a great feature, at least for users who are addicted to games on Facebook. Also, for new users, staying anonymous and trying out the game is a great advantage. However, demo games are not something new. We have already seen downloadable demos offered for Xbox 360 since its launch, and not to forget the trial version PC games which were available for free download.

Nevertheless, do you think the new feature would benefit you in any way? Would trying a game on Facebook make you more likely to install it? Let us know by adding your comments below.

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Author: Joel Fernandes Google Profile for Joel Fernandes
Joel Fernandes (G+) is a tech enthusiast and a social media blogger. During his leisure time, he enjoys taking photographs, and photography is one of his most loved hobbies. You can find some of his photos on Flickr. He does a little of web coding, and maintains a tech blog of his own - Techo Latte. Joel is currently pursuing his Masters in Computer Application from Bangalore, India. You can get in touch with him on Twitter - @joelfernandes, or visit his Facebook Profile for more information.

Joel Fernandes has written and can be contacted at joel@techie-buzz.com.

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