Former Playdom exec joins OpenFeint to help in Japanese Invasion

Ethan Fassett
Ethan Fassett

And another falls. Yet another executive from one of social gaming's biggest companies, Playdom, has left for a competitor. This time it's Ethan Fassett, an executive producer for Playdom who is now headed to OpenFeint, a mobile games network that enjoys 90 million players, as SVP of Product, VentureBeat reports.

The Burlingham, Calif.-based mobile games platform hired Fassett to help its clients create free-to-play games using the OpenFeint network--purchased by Japanese network Gree earlier this year--on both Android and iOS devices. He'll do this by leading development on new social networking features and distribution channels to support the freebie games, according to VentureBeat.

"We're very excited to bring on Ethan, whose expertise in free-to-play games and social communities will drive product strategy and shape the evolution of the network," OpenFeint CEO Jason Citron said. "Ethan truly understands social games, the social networks they need to be successful, and the tools game developers need to properly engage and monetize their players."

Executives from major gaming companies like Playdom and EA have been leaving for potentially more lucrative ventures in the social and mobile gaming arenas. And as these two companies appear to be in a lull (though, Playdom did just launch a new ESPN-branded game), publishers from the Far East encroach on the globe, throwing around millions. DeNA and its Mobage network are competing with both Zynga and Gree for dominance in the mobile games market, and the latter just got another shot in the arm.

[Image Credit: VentureBeat]

How do you think OpenFeint and Gree play in the growing war for the mobile games market? Will Playdom and EA be able to compete as Zynga and its opponents in Japan grow exponentially? Sound off in the comments. Add Comment.