Playfish to axe game despite '40k daily users'

Playfish to axe game despite '40k daily users'

By Rob Crossley

April 11th 2011 at 2:45PM

No refunds as the EA-owned firm suggests people spend credits elsewhere

Leading social games studio Playfish says it will soon shut down servers of three Facebook games.

Pirates Ahoy, Poker Rivals and Gangster City will each go offline on June 7th, Playfish said.

Playfish said it would not refund in-game currency that people had already purchased. Instead it urged customers to spend the currency – known as ‘Playfish Cash’ – on the studio’s other titles.

The firm, owned by Electronic Arts, said the trio of games “are no longer performing at a level in which they can continue to be supported”.

Yet data published by InsideSocialGames suggests that there was still consumer interest in these games. Pirates Ahoy, in particular, still has some 40,000 daily active users and attracts 267,000 customers per month.

The closure of the trio sheds light on an unexamined element of the social games space – determining the shelf life of a project.

In the past five years, social gaming has burst into a multi-billion dollar business. The phenomenon has been dominated by stories of rocketing valuations of studios driving the sector.

For now, little is understood of how social games are considered for closure.

More user data on the three games can be found at InsideSocialGames