Like It or Not, Google Has Added Games to Google+
Rovio’s Angry Birds, PopCap’s Bejeweled, Kabam’s Edgeworld, Zynga Poker and other games have been added to the Google+ social network, according to a blog post by Google this afternoon.
The rollout gradually starts today, with 16 games being added to the network.
The news came out minutes after AllThingsD got a heads-up from both Google and Facebook that they were having dueling announcements this evening. Exactly what Facebook is announcing is unknown, but clearly it is trying to steal some of Google’s thunder.
Google said that within Google+ there is a Games page you can navigate to by clicking a button at the top of your stream.
You will see the latest game updates from your circles, browse the invites you’ve received and check out games that people you know have played recently. Google says the Games page is also where your game accomplishments will appear.
After we wrote initially about Google bringing games to the Google+ network, it faced backlash from people who did not want to see game activity in their friend feed.
Google claims that you will only see the game updates if you’re interested in playing games. “If you’re not interested in games, it’s easy to ignore them. Your stream will remain focused on conversations with the people you care about.”
We are still looking for the terms between Google and the developer, which are supposed to be more favorable than Facebook’s 30 percent cut. We’ll update when we know more.
Update 1: Google says it is not sharing the terms yet, “because initially we want to learn from developers and users in this beginning stage. We eventually plan to share these though.”
Update 2: Google said in the beginning that developers will get 95 percent of revenues and Google will keep 5 percent from any virtual goods sold inside the games. That is Google’s standard for other Web-based micropayments, however, it could change in the future.
Developers will be looking to see if the Google+ game network can be as powerful as Facebook. One thing for certain is that they all can start off with a fresh slate. Not one is massively bigger than the others, like Zynga, which is larger than the next 15 developers combined.
The full list of games now on Google+ includes Angry Birds, Bejeweled Blitz, Bubble Island, City of Wonder, Collapse! Blast, Crime City, Diamond Dash, Dragon Age Legends, Dragons of Atlantis, Edgeworld, Flood-It!, Monster World, Sudoku, Wild Ones, Zombie Lane and Zynga Poker.