Ahh Zynga, the social gaming giant that seems to be unstoppable. With about 250 million monthly users worldwide, it is without a doubt taking the casual gamers’ world by storm. But monopoly of an industry is not healthy, for one, alternative sources are thrown out of the picture and the variety of available games may get limited.
With the help from our friends at InsideSocialGames, I bring to you the Top 5 Non-Zynga Facebook games. (Statistics are as of June 2011)
5. Diamond Dash (Wooga) – 9,009,641 Monthly Active Users
From Wooga (World of Gaming) comes Diamond Dash. Click on matching gems and watch your score go up. Yeah, a Bejeweled wannabe but with a twist. You gain experience after each game depending on your score. Once you unlock the skill Magic Fire, better hone your skills on recognizing matching gems faster, because once you get a combo running, Magic Fire gets activated and you get exploding gems on each match.
Tip: Make sure your speakers are on because the combo indicator is the music.
4. Pet Society (EA Playfish) – 9,035,256 Monthly Active Users
Here’s an old but still popular game from Playfish, a subsidiary of Electronic Arts. If you haven’t heard of Pet Society yet (new FB user?), here’s what it’s all about. Basically, you create a pet and take care of it by doing activities. You can play ball, give it a bath, feed it, you can even interact with other users’ pet. The game offers a variety of customization not only for your pet, but also your house which you can decorate to your heart’s content.
3. Bejeweled Blitz (PopCap Games) – 10,530,823 Monthly Active Users
No need further introduction, this one’s another classic game that’s a staple for most Facebook gamers. PopCap Games has this other title that will glue you to your computer chair. Basically you line up gems to make sets of 3, then certain patterns can unlock special moves. You can use coins to unlock boosts which, as the name implies, gives you boosts in the game. The brilliance of the game comes from its simple and yet challenging platform that rewards the user with a sense of satisfaction.
2. Monster Galaxy (Gaia Online) – 12,472,746 Monthly Active Users
If you’ve played one of the PokÃ©mon series on the Gameboy or any other Nintendo console, you’re in for a treat. Gaia Online brings you Monster Galaxy, a fighting game in which you use creatures called “œMoga(s)”. You can train and capture different mogas along your journey, just like PokÃ©mon. Don’t forget to let your mogas rest after a tiring day of battling different mogas.
1. Gardens of Time (Playdom) 12,688,001 Monthly Active Users
Hidden object games have been the favorite amongst casual gamers but not so much for the online gamers. Gardens of Time by Playdom takes the genre to a whole new level, not just a new platform. You use a time machine to travel through time in order to unravel the secrets of the secret society, and protect the world. Just like the Mystery Case Files franchise, you are presented with a scene and you need to find the hidden objects listed.
So if you’re sick of toiling on your farm, collecting from your city shops or icing people for your mafia, try out these new games or revisit old favorites to while away some time in Facebook.
Editor’s note: This post is contributed by Andrei Lim with some slight revisions by the editor. Andrei was born with a game controller in his hand, started gaming at the age of 6 when he first got his NES and SNES. He has beaten a lot of games and continues this legacy with his gaming rig.