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Summary:

Zynga, after months of rumors about a strain in their relationship and a dalliance with non-Facebook platforms like Yahoo, is sticking close to the social network for the launch of its newest game, a Farmville-style offering called Frontierville.

Zynga, after months of rumors about a strain in its relationship with Facebook and a dalliance with Yahoo, is sticking close to the social network for the launch of its newest game, a Farmville-style offering called Frontierville that debuts today. Sources close to both companies said that the two have worked out their differences over issues such as the use of Facebook Credits for payment in Zynga games, as well as the effect that Facebook’s new rules on notifications in a user’s stream has had on the viral growth of them.

Zynga “has a great relationship with [Facebook], and it is definitely a long-term relationship,” said one source. The two companies are “working together to do what’s best for both their ecosystems.” Both recognize that they’d each lose something if they were to dissolve their connection, the source added. Zynga, which has become Facebook’s largest social game provider by a substantial margin, gets millions of users for its games from the social network; Facebook, in turn, gets millions of engaged users who spend lots of time on the site.

The two companies recently issued a press release to quell some of the talk that they were less than friendly, and announced a five-year “strategic relationship” in which Zynga agreed to expand its use of the new Facebook Credits payment system. The social network takes a 30 percent cut of all payments done through Facebook Credits, something Zynga was reportedly not happy about.

Talk of a rift between the two companies began after changes were made to the way that Facebook applications notify users of activity, which caused the growth in Zynga’s games such as Farmville and Mafia Wars to slow and even decline in some cases. According to statistics collected by Second Shares — a site that tracks the value of private companies through the secondary share market, and has valued Zynga at $5 billion — the company saw a dramatic decline in monthly average users after the changes were made.

The new game, Frontierville, was designed by Brian Reynolds — who has worked on several landmark PC games such as Civilization II — and is the first social game to offer multiple characters or avatars for a user to control. Zynga has 7 out of the top 10 games on Facebook, and more than 230 million active monthly users spread across all of its games. Farmville alone has more than 70 million monthly active users, and one of the company’s most recent games — Treasure Isle — has more than 24 million monthly users, despite being launched a little over a month ago.

Related content from GigaOM Pro (sub req’d): Will Zynga’s Growth Make it a Facebook Frienemy?

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  1. FrontierVille debuts on Facebook « Social Game News Wednesday, June 9, 2010

    [...] GigaOM ” The new game, Frontierville, was designed by Brian Reynolds — who has worked on several landmark PC games such as Civilization II — and is the first social game to offer multiple characters or avatars for a user to control.” [...]

  2. The title of the article (rather the misspell in the title) got me interested in reading its entirety.

  3. Carolyn Pritchard Wednesday, June 9, 2010

    @queboi — that was an editing error and has been fixed, thanks very much for outpointing.

  4. Zynga Launches New Game Frontierville on Facebook | Toys & Game-Review Wednesday, June 9, 2010

    [...] rest is here: Zynga Launches New Game Frontierville on Facebook Published under Uncategorized | send this post Tags: after-months, farmville-style, [...]

  5. That game would be so- much better if the energy thing wasnt so stupid. just sayin..

  6. Please read, this IS important…

    Before you decide to play think twice about buying in-game items with your real-life hard earned

    money. Be weary that you could loose it and your game connection all in a blink of time and

    without ever being compinsated or getting a reason for the loss, let alone what they are going to

    do about it.

    With 706+ complaints, and still counting, since day One when FrontierVille has opened it doors to

    the mass of players there has never been any word from Zynga as to why, when or how they are

    going to fix these serious problems this game has been causing for hundreds of gamers. The

    players deserve to be both heard and given honest and considerate explinations and updates as to

    what Zynga is doing about it. People have the right to know

    Read for yourself and be aware of what’s really going on in this new FrontierVille’s community:
    http://forums.zynga.com/showthread.php?t=594022

    So far, their actions (or rather, lack of them) seem to be saying to the players “No

    Explinations, No Refunds, No Apologies.”

    Is it the game companies who are being wronged here, or is it the game-players like us?
    It’s gamers who put the money in your pockets, but that wont last long if the game makers wont do

    right by their paying customers.

    Won’t someone finally step up to the plate and get this problem quickly and honestly fixed?

  7. Frontierville Tuesday, June 29, 2010

    The game is much more fun than farmville.
    unluckly there is a problem with energy.
    It should be easier to get more energy. You use it up way too fast and then you have to wait to get enough to go back and do another brief session.

  8. I can play all the other games but can;t see Fronterville it plays the music thats all.

  9. Bryson Gibson Thursday, July 8, 2010

    Why are the letters and Avatar so blurry on my game. my neighbors are not. just mine. what should I do.???

  10. Sharlann Daley Friday, July 9, 2010

    One of the goals is to plant 1600 peanuts which are 4 day crops. Are they kidding me??? Sheesh!!! Some of the goals listed seem unreachable and the game creators don’t seem to think of these things; if a player can’t reach a goal, most likely a player will stop playing. I’ve been trying to clobber 12 groundhogs but they don’t show up even after planting all kinds of crops. Can’t clobber them if they’re not there.

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