BB Video: Social Games, and The Quest for Virtual Poo.

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Today on Boing Boing Video, Playfish Games founder Sebastien de Halleaux joins us for a conversation about games developed for social networks. The Playfish game "Pet Society" is currently the most popular game on facebook, with millions of participants per day. Sebastien reveals an odd, unintended subculture that developed out of this game -- you feed these visrtual pets in the game, and eventually they poop, so fans began to "farm" poo, and compete to see who could cultivate the most. The game's developers in turn responded by creating high score poo variants, like the coveted rainbow poo, and the ultra-high-score golden poo. Playfish has other popular games on MySpace, Facebook, Bebo, and the like, including another one where you manage a restarurant with your friends. This episode is an excerpt from our marathon live streaming coverage of the Game Developer Conference.


* Doctor Popular's Awesome Yo-Yo Stylings
* Hideo Kojima on Metal Gear Solid Touch (games)
* Jane McGonigal on Emotion, Gaming, and Dance.
* Jane McGonigal - Games Can Change the World.
* Jane McGonigal's Game Developers' Conference talk on Making Your Own Reality
* BBV @ GDC live stream archives, at
* Boing Boing Video and Live at GDC09: archive
* Boing Boing Video and Live at GDC09: archive

[ Special thanks to Hugo van Tilborg. BBV Live @GDC09 credits and thanks: Production Team -- Jolon Bankey, Derek Bledsoe, Daniela Calderon, Eddie Codel, Xeni Jardin, Allison Kingsley, Matty Kirsch, Alice Taylor, Wesly Varghese. Special thanks to Wayneco Heavy Industries (accommodation and studio facilities), Virgin America Airlines (air travel), Celsius (thermogenic energy beverage), (streaming video host). Moral support, production assistance, additional talent, and good vibes provided by: Domini Anne, Scott Beale, T.Bias, Jeremy Bornstein, Brandon Boyer, Chris The Van Guy, Peter S. Conrad, Marque Cornblatt, Wayne, Bre, and the entire de Geere family, Marcy DeLuce, Cory Doctorow, Joel Johnson, Kourosh Karimkhany, Jim Louderback and the Revision 3 team, Karen Marcelo, Rocky Mullin, Alicia Pollak, Jackie Mogol, Taylor Peck, David Pescovitz, Micah Schaffer, and Teal. ]

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  1. I’m surprised no comments. All their games are so awesome. They are way fun, user friendly and very well designed. My roommate participates in the forum in pet society. It’s like a whole other world and a whole other game with subset of games. The users made their own system of trade. It’s its own strange little economy. I would love to see an academic approach to pet society and the forums. What I also admire is that the developers reach out to the users to make the game better. That’s all. Just wanted to say it’s pretty cool. I’m playing right now.

  2. Xeni, you really need some kind of monocle monitor so that you don’t look so disengaged during the interview :)

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