Zynga are continuing to take over the world, one Facebook app at a time, but their most recent release may actually be sucking some of the lifeblood from their former blockbuster.
And we’re not talking tiny numbers here – while the daily active user count is neck-and-neck (CityVille at 15 million, FarmVille at 14 million), CityVille is currently boasting more than 33% more monthly active users than FarmVille. That’s a whopping 86 million people per month logging in to manage a city and clutter up their friend’s Walls. (FarmVille‘s record was 83.7 million, back in March 2010.)
In CityVille (which I admit, I have played, but only briefly!), you are given a semi-rural plot of land and instructions to “grow your community into a model city”. There’s all sorts of fun things to build, from houses and farms to toy stores, coffee shops and a Town Hall. Depending on how you’d like to swing it, your city can become a nifty little self-sustaining community that grows its own food, or you can create a sprawling metropolis bursting with skyscrapers and buzzing with people.
It’s not been revealed how much gamers are spending on Zynga‘s new baby, but with the game’s microtransaction model, I’d be expecting the developers to be quite pleased with themselves – and their wallets.
There is still one interesting trend, however. CityVille is pulling in huge numbers, but it’s falling behidn in the daily active user retention stakes. At its peak, FarmVille was seeing roughly 30% of its average monthly userbase checking in each day. Today, CityVille is plodding along at just 20%. Does the city slicker have the same long-term appeal as the country cousins?