What are persistent browser-based games?
The name ‘persistent’ refers to the fact that these games store the state of every object and character on the server – this means that if you log out and then log back in later, your game world will still be exactly how it was when you logged out. Examples include Pirate Clan and Viking Clan.
These sorts of games have been around for years but have started to gain more notice recently thanks to the success of Zynga’s Facebook games FarmVille and Mafia Wars, which are often referred to by players as PBBGs because they contain many of the standard features described above.
What are the advantages of persistent browser-based games?
PBBGs have many advantages over traditional downloadable games. They are usually cheaper to make and distribute as there is no initial download required; they can be played instantly without having to wait for a large file to transfer; they often support social networking sites such as Facebook, allowing you to play with your friends online; and because it takes less bandwidth, you don’t need as good an internet connection to play them compared with other types of game.
The main disadvantage is that some people may not like the idea of having their browser manage all their saved files – this means that unlike with downloaded PC or console games (where one copy can be shared between multiple users), each user has to create their own online account if they want to play.
What game themes are popular?
Currently, the most popular PBBG game type is that of mafia (or gangster) games, which usually involve fighting missions and tasks in order to rise up through the ranks of a criminal empire. For instance, Mob Wars: La Cosa Nostra was launched by Kano and has over 1 million players worldwide.
Several other popular genres currently exist, including pet games, farming titles, and social network-based fiction worlds. Some developers have started combining various different genres into their games in order to appeal to even more players.