FarmVille is an example of not-so-social social games, professor says

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Another qualified professional, another dismal critical opinion of social games. In what seems to be a dime-a-dozen these days, Coastal Carolina University professor D.E. Wittkower has provided his expert analysis of Facebook to The Sun News. More importantly, both Wittkower and Sun News reporter Isaac Bailey had choice words for Facebook games in particular.

When Bailey eloquently asked, "Why do people spend so much time playing those stupid Facebook games?" (Seriously?) Wittkower replied, "The social games ... which people really make fun of don't have creative interaction with others or particularly interesting game play. Farmville is the exemplar of this not-so-social kind of social game."

The professor and editor of "Facebook and Philosophy" went on to provide Bailey with a news flash that the legitimacy of social gaming has been under fire for some time now. (You know, for the past two years?) "Are these games actually fun, or are they merely addictive?" Wittkower rhetorically questions. "How did we manage to separate those two so thoroughly in a game? It's a kind of brain-hack, using parts of our impulses separated from the goals that those impulses usually serve."

Regardless of your feelings on the issue, critics, designers and gamers alike have been questioning the validity of social gaming nearly since its origin. If you live in the Myrtle Beach, N.C. area, you can pick Wittkower's brain further at his book signing on March 26 at the Books-A-Million at Coastal Grand Mall from 2 to 6 p.m.

[Image Credit: Simpsons Trivia]

What do you think of Wittkower's thoughts on social games? What do you think it will take to change the critical opinion of Facebook games? Sound off in the comments. Add Comment.
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