Zynga co-founder places bets on Kixeye; is hardcore where it's at?

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Andrew TraderZynga co-founder Andrew Trader (pictured) has traded in his plow for a panzer tank. Information Week reports that the other half to Zynga's hugely-successful whole has taken a seat on Backyard Monsters creator Kixeye's board.

"KIXEYE has emerged as the leading innovator of social games for core gamers," the former VP of sales and business development for the FarmVille maker said in a statement. "Gamers want great games, not re-skinned versions of the same thing." (Whoa, was that a left hook I just saw or an uppercut?)

Perhaps this is a reaction to the number of infringement lawsuits filed against his alma mater in the past few months alone from companies like The Learning Company, SocialApps and most recently Brazilian developer Vostu. It's even more interesting that Trader, who left Zynga last year, says this considering hardcore developers like Kabam have come under fire from Kixeye for that very issue. If Trader was looking to get away from the copycat wars between Facebook game developers, he certainly didn't travel far enough.

However, it's worth asking whether hardcore is the future on Facebook when the co-founder of arguably the most valuable gaming company ever has taken deep enough interest in a social game developer for the hardcore niche. (It's strange to call hardcore gaming a "niche" on Facebook, considering it has dominated elsewhere for 30 years.) Maybe Trader is right: There are nearly 80 million Facebook gamers playing these hardcore-style strategy games on Facebook, after all. And if there's anyone with the foresight to point out the next big thing on Facebook, it's the guy who planted seeds that grew into a $20 billion company.

[Image Credit: CrunchBase]

Do you think that hardcore games are the future of gaming on Facebook? Why do you think Trader would say such a thing in light of his new role at Kixeye? Sound off in the comments. Add Comment.
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