German social game developer Wooga will be bringing its most popular social games to iOS, taking the leap into mobile. The studio claims that its venture into mobile games development makes it the second largest social game developer in the world, and is considered the third-largest social game maker on Facebook, with over 35 million monthly active users.
“We feel the timing is right. For us, it’s not about sprinting. We’re not in here to sell the company in a year,” said Jens Begemann, Wooga CEO. “We think that our audience and our target group is coming onto mobile now. However, this version of the game is being create by a different team entirely from the folks who crafted the Facebook game. We know that if we copy the Facebook game, we won’t be successful.”
Wooga’s first mobile title will be iPhone and iPad versions of Diamond Dash, currently the 10th most popular game on Facebook, played by more than 10 million people. The iOS version will be released this summer, and will feature Facebook integration.
The gem-bashing Facebook game has already racked up 10 million users, and will be Wooga’s first game available on iPads and iPhones. But the CEO said that it is planning an HTML5 app for Android and other platforms, which will be released shortly thereafter. Wooga also has plans to develop a new title solely in HTML5, which users can expect to drop around the same time. Wooga may have been slow to go mobile, but its plans for HTML5 indicate its hopes for the future of industry standards.
Wooga has more than 35 million monthly active users on Facebook, behind only Zynga with 266 million users, and Electronic Arts-PopCap Games with 48 million users. That’s a pretty big achievement for a company that didn’t exist until a couple of years ago. The move into mobile games makes sense because there’s a mad rush into this space, which is one of the wide-open battlegrounds in the game market. By moving into mobile, Wooga is following a model that many successful social game companies have tried, though few have succeeded on a large scale.
Online game monetization has become big business, for PCs, social networks and mobile platforms alike. In many ways it’s the third party platform owners that are making the most progress in this area, pushing the limits on how developers can benefit developing trends around gaming technology. For Live Gamer, it’s been quite an evolution, watching the gaming industry and surviving some of the changes and technological advances that have taken place in recent years.