Boston Facebook game developers Hangout and Ayeah shut down

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Closed DownSometimes, social games aren't all rainbows and pools filled with green papers adorned with old Benjamin Franklin's mug. For some, like Boston-based developers Ayeah and Hangout, it can be a rough time. According to Boston.com, Hangout has been shut down while Ayeah shuttered its only game, FanSwarm.

Hangout closed its doors completely after raising $12 million from various venture capital firms, launching an unsuccessful 3D virtual world and later Fashion City. The game allowed players to run virtual fashion shows with clothing from real-life designers.

According to Boston.com, Hangout's decline was a slow one, as the layoffs came as early as 2008 and continued well into 2010. Now, the company has ceased all communication: no phone, no website, nada.

As for Ayeah, the company is reevaluating its situation after FanSwarm, the first "social reality" game on Facebook, according to the company. The game allowed players to predict the success of up-and-coming celebrities as if they were Hollywood talent agents. After attracting just about 35 thousand players, Ayeah founder Doug Levin told Boston.com that the game has officially been taken down.

"We're trying to figure out what to do with it," Levin said. "There were significant challenges getting the game's monetization to meet our customer acquisition cost." According to Boston.com, the two company chiefs, Levin and Hangout's Pano Anthos, have extensive backgrounds in enterprise technology--not video games. Perhaps that's what makes the difference.

[Image Credit: Muskegon]

Were you a fan of either of these Facebook games? How does this sad news affect your view of the social games industry? Share with us in the comments. Add Comment.
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