Social game developer Zynga has launched its first title designed explicitly for mobile Web browsers, Mafia Wars: Atlantic City. The game was developed in HTML5 and is designed specifically for mobile devices like the iPad, iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, and WebOS handsets. Mafia Wars is available for download at GetJar or at the URL http://m.mafiawars.com. It’s worth noting that one of Zynga’s recent acquisitions was a company called Dextrose AG, which created an HTML5-based game development engine.
The game is likely part of Zynga’s attempt to diversify away from Facebook and into mobile gaming. Mafia Wars: Atlantic City is still somewhat reliant on Facebook, in that it uses Facebook Connect to create a user’s social graph and connect to a user’s Facebook Mafia Wars account if he or she plays that version. Users playing Atlantic City can collect funds from their Mafia Wars properties, for example. The Facebook version of Mafia Wars currently serves around 19 million monthly active users and 3 million daily active users.
Mafia Wars is available for iPhone with a dedicated app and Zynga plans to release a dedicated Android app soon. Zynga’s most recent acquisition, Words with Friends creator Newtoy, seems to indicate that the company is very serious about expanding its mobile publishing. Zynga has released iPhone and iPad versions of its current flagship game, FarmVille, and has issued an app for Zynga Poker on Android. The iPhone version of FarmVille has been downloaded around 7 million times according to Zynga.
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