If loosely defined, social games are those which you enjoy with other people. If you think about it, most games are meant to be enjoyed with other people so this is not a new term. But nowadays, social gaming refers to playing with other people over the internet, specifically in social sites like the very ubiquitous Facebook. Gaming consoles like the Xbox Live and PlayStation Network have this capability as well.
Back in the 70s and all the way to the 80s, the first role playing game (RPG) was enjoyed by millions of people around the world: Dungeons and Dragons. This involved storytelling as every player acted out a character in a make-believe world.
At the same time, the first batch of video games was being developed. Due to the popularity of D&D, game developers thought of integrating that idea to their creations. As computer technology progressed together with the introduction of the internet, social gaming rose to new heights.
Ultima Online, which was released in 1997, and Everquest which came out in 1999 were perhaps the forerunners of multi-player social gaming. Players connected their computers with two or more others through LAN and then started hacking and slashing their competitor’s avatars to win.
However, the most popular MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game) today, and since its conception, is the World of Warcraft. This is not just played as a LAN game but can be enjoyed online. Now, gamers are hacking and slashing avatars of players from other parts of the world.
Today, various gaming consoles such as Microsoft’s Xbox and Sony’s Playstation are using the internet to give their players a better gaming experience.
Gaming consoles are not the only ones who are capitalizing on this. Even social sites like Facebook are allowing their members to enjoy social gaming through online diversions such as Facebook Bingo, Texas Holdem Poker, Chefville, Bejeweled Blitz, Criminal Case and Farmville, just to name a few.
Social gaming on Facebook is such a great hit because it incorporates communication in gaming. It’s so much fun including your FB friends in running your city or your farm, or conquering kingdoms and castles. It also feels good (at least for some) to beat friends and family in games like Tetris and Candy Crush and then posting that fact on your Facebook wall.
Facebook is a site primarily for communication, although it has added these applications for gaming. Conversely, there are gaming sites which are now allowing social interactions to make the gaming experience more fun. One of those sites is NetBet, where you have a lot of games to pick out from.
There are some gaming experts who think that online social gaming is something that people will never really get bored with. But there are those who will say that internet game developers will not be profiting from these forever.
Nevertheless, social gaming will live on. It will just depend on game developers on how they will adapt to the technological changes of the time.