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Social City

Social City

Social City was a social game released on Facebook in 2010. It was a collaboration between Pushbutton Labs and Playdom, and I worked on the design of it. The goal of the game was to produce goods in factories to earn money for your city. Earning money allowed the construction of leisure buildings which made your citizens happy. Happier citizens allowed for more population, which allowed for the construction of more factories.

At the time of release, the bar for quality on Facebook was not very high. Our main goal with Social City was to create a game that raised that quality bar and allowed players to make something they were proud of. We wanted players to make cities that felt fun and alive. To achieve this, we focused on the little people living in the city (which we unofficially dubbed “civs”). Originally, we wanted them to get in car wrecks, put out fires, etc. We didn’t quite achieve that level of “fishbowlness,” but the game did turn out beautiful, and people loved the life that spilled out of the game. At it’s peak, Social City had around 3 million daily active users, and it pioneered an art style that was copied by many games afterward.