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Mytopia Networks Casual Gamers Through Web 2.0 Widgets

A new social gaming community called Mytopia has launched, blending casual games with existing social networking tools like Facebook, MySpace, and Bebo with the aim of offering MMO-style social features to players of casual games.
A new social gaming community called Mytopia has launched, blending casual games with existing social networking tools like Facebook, MySpace, and Bebo. It aims to offer MMO-style social features such as a virtual economy, teams and matches and connectivity features to players of casual games. Players log in to Mytopia directly from the social networks they use – in addition to Facebook, MySpace, and Bebo, the games are available via Apple Dashboard Widgets, iGoogle Gadgets, Microsoft Vista Toolbar Widgets, and Yahoo! Widgets, or from Mytopia's own home portal. Mytopia currently hosts eight classic games:Chess, Backgammon, Sudoku, Dominoes and Bingo in the club room, Spades, and Hearts in the card room, and Video Poker in the casino room, and the company promises new games added monthly. In addition to the games themselves, a "Town Hall" social feature lets users see others online and where they're logged in, read and post to message boards, and sort the leaderboards by their preferences. Users also have customizable "My Home" profiles, which host their friends list and personalized profile and avatar, along with their in-game items, messages, chat history and privacy settings. Existing social networking profiles and friends lists can be transferred into Mytopia. Finally, the in-game shop lets users trade points they've earned for virtual in-game goods as well as real-world prizes, including gift certificates to online stores like Amazon and iTunes. Mytopia CEO Guy Ben-Artzi commented, "Social networks are introducing online games to people who typically don’t consider themselves ‘gamers.’ These users want titles they can play with classmates, colleagues, and children alike. The traditional gaming market has largely overlooked these new users, but Mytopia is targeting new gamers with timeless, socially engaging titles that everybody knows and loves. There is no substitute for human competition, and nothing beats playing with people you like."

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