RockYou's Julie Shumaker: 'We've got to blow sh*t up'

According to RockYou SVP and GM Julie Shumaker, social games need more explosions to reel in the hardcore crowd. While she was probably kidding, Shumaker spoke on this very topic at MI6, more specifically the future of social games, Inside Social Games reports. "The irony is that the future of social gaming will actually be social," Shumaker said. "The evolution of social games is about game content and the mechanics that make interesting social game experiences. Content will move from clicks to storylines. We may require people to think."

While we've heard it before--that social games are social enough--Shumaker addressed the how of it all in a short, six-minute long presentation at the games marketing conference in San Francisco. To her, multiplayer in social games needs to become seamless rather than harvesting your friends crops and then waiting for their response. From the looks of what Shumaker is dishing out, Facebook games need to become more like MMOs and less like Flash games. While the outset of Facebook gaming already appears to be headed in that direction, the first Facebook MMOs haven't been wildly successful. That said, some serious marketing dollars and audience rewiring will be needed to make the genre a success on Facebook.

However, mobile is also an exciting concept for social game creators. According to Inside Social Games, Shumaker presented a scenario in which someone walks into Starbucks with his smartphone, wins a level and earns a free latte from that shop. When you think of it, the whole game layer movement could turn the lot of casual mobile gamers into hardcore social gamers, which would make folks like Shumaker very happy.

RockYou recently appointed a new CEO from within and signed with Loot Drop, an extremely promising developer. It should be apparent by now that the company means business. More importantly, Facebook game creators like RockYou are out to turn us into hardcore, dedicated social gamers on every platform. But are we ready to offer that dedication?

Do you think social games need more hardcore engagement or deeper, more social gameplay? Do you see a future where you're more dedicated to social games than, say, "hardcore" games? Share with us in the comments. Add Comment.
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