|Headquarters||Palo Alto, California, U.S.|
|Key people||John Pleasants, CEO
David Sobeski, CTO
Brad Serwin, COO
Dan Yue, Founder
Chris Wang, Founder
Ling Xiao, Founder
|Industry||video games, social network service|
(The Walt Disney Company)
Playdom is an online social network game developer popular on Facebook, Google+ and MySpace; it is currently the largest social game developer on MySpace and number 15 by MAU on Facebook. The company was founded in the San Francisco Bay Area2 by University of California, Berkeley graduates Ling Xiao and Chris Wang and Swarthmore College graduate Dan Yue. In 2009, the market for games played on social networking sites was valued at $300 million, consisting mostly of online sales of virtual goods.3
On November 12, 2009, Playdom acquired Green Patch and Trippert Labs.4 In September 2009, competitor Zynga initiated a trade secrets lawsuits against Playdom and 22 other rivals,5 including Green Patch. These lawsuits were finally settled in November 2010, less than 4 months after Disney's acquisition of Playdom in July 2010.6
On March 31, 2010, Playdom announced the acquisition of Argentina-based online game developer Three Melons for an undisclosed amount.7In April 2010, Playdom closed all but one of the games from the Green Patch studio six months post-acquisition.8 On April 26, 2010, Playdom announced the acquisition of Merscom, a North Carolina-based social game developer.9 On May 19, 2010, they acquired Acclaim Games.10 On June 7, 2010, Playdom announced the acquisition of gaming developer Hive7 after a $33 million funding round. This marked Playdom's sixth acquisition over the prior year.11 On July 8, 2010, Playdom announced it acquired Metaplace, Inc.. The pricing of the deal was not disclosed.12
On July 27, 2010, The Walt Disney Company acquired Playdom in a $763 million deal. Disney initially paid $563 million for Playdom, which was the No. 3 social game company with about 42 million monthly players at the time of the acquisition. The deal also included a further $200 million in additional payments if Playdom achieves certain growth thresholds.13
In May 2011, Playdom has been ordered by the Federal Trade Commission to pay $3 million in fines for collecting and disclosing children's information without parental approval.14
In April 2014, Playdom announced the closure of all online games on the Playdom site, including Gardens of Time, Marvel: Avengers Alliance, Kitchen Scramble, Pirates of the Caribbean: Isles of War, Ghosts of Mistwood, Disney City Girl, and Disney Words of Wonder. The games closed on April 25, 2014. RockYou acquired the Facebook games Gardens of Time, Words of Wonder, and Disney City Girl (renamed to City Girl Life).15
- Disney Hidden Worlds
- Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon (GotG)
- Kitchen Scramble
- Marvel: Avengers Alliance
The following games were sold to RockYou in April 2014 to keep Playdom running.
- Disney City Girl (now renamed "City Girl Life")
- Disney Words of Wonder (now renamed "Words of Wonder")
- Gardens of Time
- Social City – A casual strategy game in which the player develops a city. Social City won the 2010 Game Developers Choice Online Award for Best Social Network Game.18 Inside Social Games rated Social City as the #2 Best Facebook Game of the first half of 2010.19 Social City also received an honorable mention on Gamasutra's list of the Top 5 Facebook Social Games in 2010.20 Gamezebo rated Social City at 3.5 out of 5, highlighting balanced gameplay and "adorable" graphics. However, it was criticized for its lack of complexity: "Once you’ve mastered the game’s ecosystem of manufacturing/residential/leisure, all you’ll be doing is visiting your town to keep this balance in check and grow your city. Growing your city remains exciting throughout, but by the time you hit level 15 or so you just start wishing there was something more."21 Social City was closed on December 20, 2011.22
- Big City Life
- Blackwood & Bell Mysteries
- Botkin's Hidden Cove
- City of Wonder
- Deep Realms
- Disney Animal Kingdom Explorers
- Disney Ghosts of Mistwood
- Disney Gnome Town
- ESPNU College Town
- ESPN Return Man
- ESPN Sports Bar & Grill
- Fish Friends
- (Lil) Farm Life
- (Lil) Green Patch
- Market Street
- Marvel Tactics
- Mobsters - Facebook
- Mobsters - MySpace
- Mobsters: Overdrive
- My Vineyard
- NBA Dynasty
- Pet Resort
- Pirates of the Caribbean: Isles of War
- Sorority Life - MySpace
- Threads of Mystery
- Tiki Farm
- Tiki Resort
- Poker Palace
- Wild Ones 23
- Full Bloom
- Sorority Life - Facebook24
- Armies of Magic
- Mobsters 2: Vendetta
- Mobsters: Criminal Empire
- "Playdom". LinkedIn. 2011-08-25. Retrieved 2011-09-09.
- Stone, Brad (16 December 2009). "Russian Facebook investor adds stake in Zynga". New York Times. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- Wawro, Alex (16 December 2009). "Online sale of digital content breaks $1bn in 2009". PC World.
- "Playdom Announces Acquisitions Green Patch Trippert Labs". Retrieved December 2, 2011.
- "Zynga Goes To The Mattresses 22 Lawsuits Filed This Year And Counting". Retrieved December 2, 2011.
- "Zynga is Extremely Pleased With Playdom Disney Litigation Settlement". Retrieved December 2, 2011.
- "Playdom Acquires Argentine Game Developer Three Melons". 31 March 2010. Retrieved 1 April 2010.
- "Six Months After Acquiring It Playdom is Killing Off Lil Green Patch". Retrieved December 2, 2011.
- "Playdom Announces Acquisition of Merscom". Playdom. 2010-04-26. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
- Tom Ivan (2010-05-19). "Playdom Acquires Acclaim - Edge Magazine". Next-gen.biz. Retrieved 2011-09-09.
- "Playdom Announces Acquisition of Hive7". Playdom. 2010-06-24. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
- Dean Takahashi, VentureBeat. "Playdom buys Metaplace, which forsook virtual worlds for social games." July 8, 2010.
- Don Reisinger, CNET. "FTC: Disney's Playdom violated child protection act." May 13, 2011. Retrieved May 13, 2011.
- VentureBeat. RockYou buys three Playdom games from Disney to keep them running
- "Playdom Online Games - Free Games". Playdom.com. Retrieved 2011-09-09.
- "Playdom Games Popularity Trends - 4/7–4 July 2011 - Playdom Gaming". Wildonesgaming.ucoz.com. 2011-07-04. Retrieved 2011-09-09.
- "Game Developers Choice Online Awards 2010 Recipients". Retrieved 2011-11-22.
- Mack, Christopher (2010-06-30). "The Best Facebook Games of 2010". Inside Social Games. Inside Network. Retrieved 2011-11-22.
- Caoili, Eric (2010-12-28). "Gamasutra's Best Of 2010: Top 5 Facebook Social Games". Gamasutra. UBM TechWeb. Retrieved 2011-05-10.
- Squires, Jim (2010-04-04). "Social City Review". GameZebo. Retrieved 2011-05-10.
- Playdom email sent to players 22 November 2011
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