Developer News
Facebook @ GDC: Driving discovery and engagement for cross-platform games

More people than ever are discovering games they love on Facebook. This week at Game Developers Conference (GDC), we’re announcing that across mobile and web, an average of 375 million people play Facebook-connected games each month and that Facebook’s website and mobile apps send an average of 735 million referrals to games every day.

People want to play your game everywhere

Whether they’re playing games on their phone on the bus, on their desktop at work, or on their tablet at night, people want the flexibility to play games seamlessly across all platforms. We ran an internal study in September that looked at how people play games that connect with Facebook, and we found that cross-platform players tend to spend more time and money on games than single-platform players.

In the study, mobile engagement for cross-platform players was 2.4 times the engagement of mobile-only players. Facebook desktop engagement for cross-platform players was 1.5 times the engagement of desktop-only players. We also found that cross-platform players spent more, too: revenue on desktop for cross-platform players was 3.3 times the revenue of desktop-only players.

We want to make it easier for you to take your games cross-platform. We provide helpful tools such as: our SDK for Unity that makes it simple to integrate Facebook in your Unity game; tools from Parse that let you save player data to the cloud; and Facebook social features that let players find their friends on a game anywhere.

This growing list of resources is making it easier than ever for mobile developers to bring their games to Facebook desktop and vice versa. For example, mobile games built with Unity, like Glu Mobile's Deer Hunter 2014, Zynga's Castleville Legends, and Madfinger's Dead Trigger 2, have all grown their audience and allowed people to play on more devices by expanding to Facebook.com with our SDK.

Focusing on discovery and engagement

We’re focusing on improving the quality of discovery and engagement for Facebook-connected games. Already, we've given developers more compelling ways to showcase their games with App Center videos, created more places within Facebook to recommend great games, and found more ways to give people context about games before they try them.

At GDC, we'll also talk about how to use our paid channels for installs and re-engagement. Recently, Nordeus used desktop app ads to re-engage people playing Top Eleven – Be a Football Manager. By using Custom Audiences, one of their campaigns delivered a 589% return on investment. You can learn more in our case study.

Introducing improved requests

Today at GDC, we’re also excited to announce that we've improved game requests. Developers can now customize the language in a request to give people more information about what their friends are asking them to do in a game. For example, requests that used to say "Anita sent you a request" will now have specific information about the request, such as "Anita asked you for a life." With this change, players can better decide whether they want to take action on a request, and developers can gauge which requests perform the best.

It's simple for developers to take advantage of this improvement to requests. You only need to add two new pieces of information to your request: an action and an object. You can find out more by reading our documentation.

Meet the Facebook Games team

We'll be at GDC this week to talk about these topics and to meet with developers. If you're at GDC, come see our session at 11am today "Facebook Unlocked: Trends & Opportunities for Cross-Platform Games." You can also talk to people from the Facebook Games team and Parse any time Wednesday through Friday at our booth (1838).