Zynga's FarmVille game will be mobile-only after Adobe ends Flash Player support from Jan 1

The desktop version of 'Farmville 2: Tropic Escape' will no longer run on browsers.

Agencies
Zynga is expected to launch Farmville 3 in 2021.
The original version of FarmVille, which was once the most popular game on Facebook, is officially shutting down. Mark Pincus, chairman of co-founder of California-based game developer Zynga, broke the news on Twitter. “Tomorrow, Zynga shuts down FarmVille on Facebook after 11 years. I wanted to share the story of how we created it and why it has played such an important role in the evolution of gaming,” Pincus said.


Zynga’s FarmVille was one of the pioneers in tapping into Facebook’s burgeoning user base when they showcased the video game 11 years ago. Despite the lack of flashy graphics, the game became immensely popular, and Pincus reckons “real innovation” went into making games “accessible to busy adults.”


“It was the first game at scale that leveraged big data, and almost everything inside the game was tested and optimized. FarmVille became a training ground for a generation of entrepreneurs and product managers,” he said.


Zynga was early to realize the potential of farm games, which were slowly gaining popularity in the United States in the last decade decade. In 2009, it acquired MyMiniLife, and directed four engineers to build a farm game.

“The team sat in an alcove by my office. I met w/ them daily and focused on building the next evolution of social farm simulation. We kept it simple: better crop art, math, and remove the stranger-danger marketplace. We also found subtle ways to make it easier to play,” Pincus said.
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Facebook, which was then opening its feed to app developers, saw the potential in FarmVille, and Mark Zuckerberg asked Pincus to publish the game on the popular social network “Facebook had just opened the feed to app developers, and Zuck asked me to send him all the content we had, saying FB would filter out what it didn’t want to show. FarmVille became the first major game to leverage the news feed as an extension of the core game,” Pincus added.

FarmVille was launched, shortly thereafter, on June 19, 2009. It became an “immediate viral hit” and managed to garner 1 million daily active users (DAUs) by the end of its first week, Pincus said. FarmVille’s popularity did not wane in the intervening decade. The decision to pull the plug on the game comes on the back of Adobe’s announcement that it will no longer distribute and update its Flash Player for web browsers after December 31, 2020.

“Following an incredible 11 years since its initial launch back in 2009, we are officially announcing the closure of the original FarmVille game on Facebook. As previously stated, Adobe will stop distributing and updating Flash Player for all web browsers, and Facebook will stop supporting Flash games on the platform completely after December 31. FarmVille will, therefore, be directly affected as a result of this,” Zynga said in an announcement.

The Adobe Flash Player might have come to the end of its life cycle, but this does not mean curtains for FarmVille. While the desktop version of the game will no longer run on browsers, those who wish to play Farmville 2: Tropic Escape can still do so on mobile. Zynga is expected to launch Farmville 3 in 2021.
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