Juicy article in SF Weekly about Facebook game king Zynga, and their avaricious CEO, Marc Pincus. Lum, upon whose site I saw the link, already made the “worse than Bobby Kotick” joke, so I’ll pass on that one. My thought, while reading the article, was about all of the “Diablo III isn’t innovative enough” comments we see. (There are almost as many of them as the “Diablo III is too different than past Diablo games.” comments. Cage match!)
If you think Blizzard, and specifically the Diablo III Team aren’t innovating enough, compare their efforts to Zynga, as portrayed through a few quotes from the article, mostly from ex-Zynga employees:
In light of Zynga’s phenomenal rise, one former senior employee recalls arriving at the company eager to discover what new business practices were driving its success in a market where other popular Web 2.0 ventures struggled to make money. What was Zynga’s secret? Not long after starting work, he got an answer. It came directly from Zynga founder and CEO Mark Pincus at a meeting. And it wasn’t what he expected.
“I don’t f***ing want innovation,” the ex-employee recalls Pincus saying. “You’re not smarter than your competitor. Just copy what they do and do it until you get their numbers.”
…“Zynga’s motto is ‘Do Evil,’” he says. “I would venture to say it is one of the most evil places I’ve run into, from a culture perspective and in its business approach. I’ve tried my best to make sure that friends don’t let friends work at Zynga.”
… The resemblance between Mob Wars and Mafia Wars is striking. Many of the games’ elements, characters, and place names