Social Games History

Found this jewel of an infographic while researching social games.  Interesting, but like the author mentions, some things missing, but paints a good enough picture. Spud likes.


~ by Red 5 Standing By on July 13, 2010.

4 Responses to “Social Games History”

  1. What about CONNECT FOUR? “Go for it!” lol, ahh memories…

    What I want to know is what really defines a social game today? More and more recently, “social game” suggests Internet-based games like Farmville and other browser based time-wasters. Let’s discount war, love/relationships, economics, or other institutions that philosophy and academia may try to emphasize as “games”.
    I think that a “social game”:

    • first and foremost is a game – it is not work.
    • like all games it has boundaries/rules
    • has an end with/absent a reward, contains elements of strategy and potential for mastery
    • requires a commitment of time and other intangibles, as well as tangibles
    • can be played with other entities.

    With regard to the latter remark of “entities” –invoking the inclusion of chess on the article’s poster, people play chess alone against AI opponents all the time. If everyone did this, would chess cease to be classified as a “social game”. Of course not, but what would be interesting to research is the evolution of social games from their ancient and contemporary meanings. Frankly, I think the author of the article is attempting to apply a term like ‘social games” to a generation of ancient games when such a concept was unthinkable, but today is appropriate thanks to the advent of the Internet.
    Not going into the logic behind the use of the term “social games” I think a very important “social game” missing from the poster, is lottery – one or a series of numbers drawn and the individual(s) with matching tickets get a prize, etc. (Should include raffles too.). Lottery mechanics and objectives are simple – the game’s mechanism is provided by someone, many people play simultaneously (and even hold large events for drawings), people invest something and get something (entertainment, prize, skill, etc.).

  2. Dude, it looks like social games and sports seem to go together pretty well and they we still play many variations of ancient sports, we also have digital recreations of sports and even work (e.g. Farmville). But if you want a good example of an ancient example of the “social gaming portal” you need look only to the Highland Games of Scotland, the Greek funeral and olympian games, and others that offer opportunities to participate in many different events (genres), with many players with whom to socialize, create guilds, clans and parties (factions, states, etc.), and were quite viral (news of games carried as far and fast as runners could run). Am I wrong? Would have been nice to see even a small mention of this in the poster (though it could fall under “Martial Games”

  3. Fun infographic. Humans seem to have all the fun with technology. What about the history of interspecies social games? Like, “Fido, fetch the stick” or “Fido chase the neighbor’s damn cat up the tree”? Animals need socializin’ too! Is there a way for pets to interface with another across the web? If they can make it for babies/kids (like the virtual animals shown at E3 2010), why not for lonely pets stuck out in the boonies?

  4. tremendous almanac you pick up

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