Don Mattrick has left Microsoft for a CEO position with the social games firm Zynga effective Monday July 8. Mattrick was with Microsoft for 6 years as president of its Interactive Entertainment Business and overseer of the Xbox. Before that, he served as president of worldwide studios at EA.
After taking a financial beating this year, Zynga looks to be renewing their efforts to break into the onlne gambling business. The world's leader in Facebook-based games has just partnered with the British film, Bwin.party, and aims to launch a slate of online casino games in 2013.
You all know Mafia Wars, right? It's one of those games on Facebook that sends you an update every five seconds from one of your friends asking for help in their fictional gang wars and mobster hits. It's mildly addictive and easy to play and has secured an audience of over 25 million active users. Hell, even I signed up at one point to see what all the fuss is about. But did any of those 25 million users ever think they would see Mafia Wars: The Movie?
Those of you who read reports that Zynga, the social gaming company behind the most annoying addictive and most played games on Facebook, Mafia Wars and FarmVille, was going to ditch Facebook and were excited worried, then you can rest easy. Facebook and Zynga have just released a press release that states the two have "entered into a five-year strategic relationship."