Zynga investor says, 'games are a metaphor for a social lingua franca'

Bing Gordon
Bing Gordon

But that's not all Zynga investor Bing Gordon (right) had to say in an interview with VentureBeat. The esteemed video games industry executive will soon accept a lifetime achievement award from the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences, the video game association that puts together the DICE Summit every year. The Academy will present Gordon with the award, which VentureBeat compares to the film industry's Oscars, at this year's DICE on Feb. 10 for his work with several of gaming's most influential companies including EA, Ngmoco and most recently Zynga.

When reminded of CityVille's immense growth, Gordon replied, "Social games give you goals where you can help and reward your friends. I think that may make the next 25 years of games even bigger. Games are becoming like a social lingua franca. They aren't just an escape for some people."

In other words, Gordon believes that games serve as connections between people. Gordon went on to admit that while Facebook games have yet to achieve AAA status like games such as the Call of Duty series, this genre is similar to how PC games were handled back in the '80s. Just like the PC wasn't originally designed to support interactive games, Gordon said, "Facebook is not designed to be an interactive app host. There is still some awkwardness to it."

Later in the interview, Gordon makes an interesting, compelling observation of games' effect on technology. He describes how despite the fact that games were originally predicted in the late '80s to bring people into the Internet, it didn't happen. But now he believes that games have come full circle, giving users a reason to get on the Internet. When you first hear word of a new game, is one of the first thoughts to pop into your head, "That's cool, but what's the multiplayer like?" We thought so.

[Image Credit: VentureBeat]

Would you agree with Gordon's observations on social games? Have games been a motivator for you to try out new technologies and web services? Sound off in the comments. Add Comment.