The party is ON! Join us at TNW Conference 2021 in Amsterdam for face-to-face business!

The heart of tech

This article was published on December 1, 2010

Farmville coming to Japan, on Mixi not Facebook

Farmville coming to Japan, on Mixi not Facebook
Fraser Smith
Story by

Fraser Smith

Fraser Smith is an IT consultant based in Shanghai, China. He has over 15 years experience in the media industry working with many major ne Fraser Smith is an IT consultant based in Shanghai, China. He has over 15 years experience in the media industry working with many major news publishers. He is also co-owner and editor of edexpat.com the educational resource for international families, teachers and schools. You can contact Fraser via Twitter by following @FrasSmith.

Venturebeat is reporting that Zynga will bring its hit social game, Farmville to Japan later this month.

As part of Zynga’s ongoing moves to lessen its dependence on Facebook, the game, renamed Farm Village, will appear on popular Japanese social network, Mixi.

This is a smart move by Zynga.  As The Next Web reported recently, Mixi is by far the largest social network in Japan, with Facebook only entering the top one hundred this year at number thirty-eight.

By doing this, Zynga immediately inherit the largest social media audience in Japan, instead of having to help Facebook increase its small market share.

There is still no guarantee that Farm Village will succeed in Japan.  Social gaming is big business in Japan with several large companies already in strong positions.  Zynga has teamed up with Softbank to expand into the country but it will still have a difficult task ahead.

It is also a slightly ironic move.  A couple of months ago, Resonance China reported, in a story that challenges common perceptions about the Chinese software business, that Farmville actually copies an existing Chinese online game that, in turn, was loosely based on a Japanese game.  So, the genre comes full circle.