Twitter: Small Games for Simple Purposes
Ones like 140 Mafia and World of Blood have integrated themselves into the social network (though not directly, yet), not to mention simple typing games, online dating, quizzes, and even apps integrated into World of Warcraft.
Below is a compilation three such games, and one fairly unique one.
One of the older applications found on Facebook is a simple app by the name of Graffiti. Still with upwards of 3 million monthly active users, creator Mark Kantor and the Graffiti team actually created a rendition of this more classic title on Twitter, called Twitdraw.
As expected, the simple game works sort of like Microsoft Paint, allowing users to adjust the size, color, and opacity of a circular brush and paint… well… graffiti on a blank, white canvas. Once your master piece is completed, the artwork is posted to Twitter with a link to where your lovely creation can be viewed and even added too (not to mention it is added to a very impressive public gallery, filled with beautiful pieces of “Top Graffiti” as well as those most recently created). In fact, you can even begin a graffiti “chain” (like a chain-letter) in which you send the tweet to multiple people at once.
Perhaps drawing isn’t your thing. If not, here is another interesting and simple app for your Twitter palette. Anyone who has been playing games on Facebook or MySpace for a while might recognize this type of game. This title is TwiDrink and is most similar to games like Pass A Drink (socialreach)and Cheers!! (BitRhymes).
That alone should explain the premise of the game, but for those unfamiliar with said titles, TwiDrink is best described as a social, virtual drinking game. Players log on, buy some cocktails (everything from long islands to margaritas) and send them to your friends. Each drink received adds a little drunkenness to a “Drink-O-Meter” at the top of the screen and it becomes a simple contest to see who gets drunk first.
Unfortunately, there isn’t too much you can do besides tweet about drinks and blindly invite followers until someone you know actually joins. Nonetheless, it’s hardly a complex app, so anyone that does take an invite will figure it out rather quickly, and it is at least a minor something to play around with for those virtual socialites.
Yet another game reminiscent of others on Facebook is Tweep Tycoon. Similar in respect to games such as Friends for Sale, this interesting title, from the same guys who created the early Twitter games of Pop Answers and Whose Tweet, shows that everyone most certainly does have a price tag.
Players begin with a hefty $100,000 in virtual currency and can buy any user on Twitter as a “pet.” Pets, as it were, start off costing around $10,000 and will increase every time they are bought. Suffice to say, that price can increase quite a bit, thus both the “owner” and the person being purchased earn a percentage of their quoted purchase price, fulfilling the previously stated “price tag” pun in both the literal and metaphorical sense.
Shopping is also made very simple, allowing players to make purchases based on friends, followers, celebrities, a wish list, and, of course, an overall global category.
Not all games are a variation of Facebook predecessors, however. One such game is a fun little app by the name of Artwiculate. This title actually makes more direct use of Twitter’s core premise, chat.
The game uses a sort of “word of the day” calendar approach, tasking users to send a tweet using the current word of the day in the proper context. Yeah, that’s all: Simple, yet gratifying. The tweet will appear at the main Artwiculate page to be seen by all, with points earned for each user that says they “like it,” and additional points earned if they retweet it. A winner is then chosen at the end of the day, and anyone who follows @artwiculate will be tweeted with the new word daily and track your progress over time with a stored profile.
Certainly, these games show a growing quality of titles on the Twitter platform, even if most of them are merely emulations of previously successful apps. However, hasn’t that been the case with so many Facebook titles in the past? With each iteration, despite quips about creativity, the platform grew and evolved. Does this mean Twitter will do the same? We’ll be watching.