The birth of Playfish!

by

we love fish

Since we’ve now launched Who Has The Biggest Brain? on Facebook, I thought it would be a good time to open our company blog and introduce you to “the fish”!

I’m Kristian Segerstråle, the CEO of Playfish (I’m also a musician and glider pilot, but more about those later!). Playfish is an international group of casual and mobile games industry veterans who believe that social games are the next big thing in the industry. We think World of Warcraft and Second Life are great for an evening at a time and hitting someone with a pizza using Food Fight on Facebook is a fun way to spend 30 seconds. But what we feel is missing is way for friends on any social network to play great games together whenever they feel like it. We want to combine the best elements from social networks, casual games, MMOGs and virtual worlds and create an entirely new way for people to experience games together.

So we founded Playfish in October 2007 and raised around $3M in seed funding to get going. There’s now ten of us or so and growing quickly. We’re working to create something unique that we hope will fundamentally change how people think about playing games online. We will announce more details as we get nearer to launch, but meanwhile we thought we’d release a first title on Facebook – Who Has The Biggest Brain?. Try it out by adding the application to your profile!

We believe in great game play, honesty, innovation and user feedback over marketing gimmicks. We also like keeping things nice and easy for the user without big downloads, obscure plug-ins, long registrations and fiddling around with credit card details. We are doing our very best to create the most inspirational, fun and interesting gaming experiences out there, and we’d love to hear what you think. So please drop us a comment if you love or hate the stuff we create.

We are working on some really exciting things, so make sure you sign up for our beta to be the first to try things out as we release them. Also, if you are creative, share our passion for games and would like to be part of creating the next big thing in the industry, please get in touch at jobs(at)playfish(dot)com. We are always looking for talented and energetic coders, artists, designers and business guys and girls to join our team.

For now, enjoy Who Has The Biggest Brain? and feel free to post your thoughts. We’ll announce more about the social games revolution soon!

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48 Responses to “The birth of Playfish!”

  1. dc Says:

    congratulations on the launch! this is the most interesting thing i’ve seen for a long time – i share your goals and look forward to having some fun playing these!!

  2. Mark Says:

    i liked playing, even if I clocked in as havin’ a “goat” brain! Keep up the good work….

  3. jamie Says:

    sounds like a sweeet spot to me! the game looks great too, perfect for slacking at work! Good luck!

  4. John Phillips Says:

    Kristian,

    Congratulations on the launch, “Who has the Biggest Brain” rocks :), keep up the good work.

  5. Mohamed Says:

    good worl ppl
    i like your styles of games
    i had reach rank 1 over all the world in who has the biggest brain but i have some problem i cann’t see the world rank ??
    i hope it resolved soon
    keep the good work and good luck

  6. Marwan Says:

    hi every body , iam marwan , i think there is some problem with the game , i think some ppl cheat , i dont mean to be bad thinking but its so clear that there is some fake or some thing

  7. laura Says:

    hi i also think people must cheat too I’ve played the game for days and have a score of 1850 this was hard to achieve as you can only respond as fast as your finger will move around the screen i wonder how people get scores of 4000+ its a shame people feel the need to cheat and spoil what is essentially just a game to have fun with your facebook friends, keep up the good work playfish, who has the biggest brain rocks even though i only have a nerd brain lol .

  8. Sebastien de Halleux Says:

    Everyone: thanks a lot for your encouraging comments. It seems that you have all been playing furiously and have the brain score to prove it. Well done and keep on sharing the game around!

    Laura and Marwan: Thanks a lot for playing and although you have already beaten my own score, I have seen people reaching well over 2,500 with my own eyes. I guess they are just that smart. We are monitoring any unorthodox scores and anyone caught will have their score erased. Be smart and don’t say you haven’t been warned ;-)

  9. Francois Dijoux Says:

    Hey, this game is very interesting and addictive. However I regret that there is not a world ranking (also displaying the nationality for example), that would be very nice. Because sometimes it’s hard to find friends also interested in those games, and if you are alone, the challenge is less … challenging!

  10. Caroline Says:

    A brilliant application!

    Is there a way we can access this game WITHOUT using Facebook? I’d love for my elementary school students to have a go!

    Keep up the good work – I’ll be sure to keep an eye on you!

  11. Mayra Says:

    Congrats to everyone at Playfish on the launch of your first title!!!

    I love it (!!!) and really look forward to seeing what you all have coming up next ;-)

    And…I don’t mean to brag, but I’m quite a scientist, I must say…

    ciao ciao

  12. Honibaz Says:

    good job

  13. may Says:

    my score has been updated on my facebook profile but not my friend’s profile. Is this a bug??

  14. Françoise Says:

    Congratulation, it is really really really nice : smart, beautifull, addictive. A great pleasure after all the shitty applications you see on facebook.

  15. Sebastien de Halleux Says:

    Everyone: thank you for your encouraging comments! Keep up these good scores… With regards to your specific questions, here are some answers.

    Francois: You’ll be glad to know that there are world scores available. To access them, simply click the button labeled ‘World Scores’ at the bottom right of the game screen. You can get more info on each player by clicking on their picture to bring up their profile. There was a temporary issue with the world scores not displaying but this has now been resolved.

    May: Scores update on your profile when you play the game. Thus your friend’s profile will only update with your current score when they play a game.

    Caroline: We love your idea of sharing this game with your students. For now, we only have a facebook version, but this may change in the near future. ;)

  16. András Says:

    The game keeps telling me to upgrade Flash. I have Flash 9. I upgraded anyway. It still won’t work. I’m trying to run it on a Mac with Safari. You may want to look into that. Thanks.

  17. Sunn Sunn Says:

    What a good brain-teaser. I enjoyed the one on Facebook! Absolutely refreshing to use the brain again!! LOL.

  18. Sebastien de Halleux Says:

    András and everyone else having flash issues: Adobe has released several versions of Flash 9. You should ensure you are using the latest version. (currently 9.0.115.0.)
    To know which version you have, right-click anywhere on the game screen, then select “About Adobe Flash 9…” This will take you to an Adobe web page and you will see you which version of flash. Please upgrade if you don’t have the latest version by following the link below the game.
    Let us know if you are still experiencing problems. Also note that such issues are best reported in the Report a Bug thread on Facebook ;)

  19. Playfish addict Says:

    hey guys! this is absolutely addictive! i have been playing it for two days.
    i was wondering if you are thinking to make separate games for developing different abilities (i love the game with weighing things and swapping card!
    good luck

  20. alexandre Says:

    This game is really fantastic. I’m an addict.
    But what is the best score possible and the one ever made ?
    I think it’s 3000 but i’m not sure.
    Thanks

  21. Hansome P Says:

    András, I had the same problem with Windows / Internet Explorer. I was stumped as well, but finally resolved the problem by deleting temporary internet files and cookies, then uninstalling and reinstalling Adobe Flash version 9.0.115.0. I also took other steps which may not have been part of the solution such as closing/disabling all running programs (such as Norton), rebooting after uninstalling, rebooting again after installing, etc.

  22. Rik Says:

    Great fun, really annoyed a friend has got 2100 and I can only just beat 2000 (atm), its the math and counting blocks that lets me down. Would like a way to focus on those areas to improve the score!! Keep up the good work :)

  23. Ehsan Says:

    Hi. first thanks for your fascinating app.
    I just had a question over scores. does the speed is more important or correct answers?
    for example if I answer 6 correct and 2 wrong will I get a better score or if just score 5 correct and no wrong answer?

    thanks

  24. Kevin Says:

    Arghhhh my girlfriend has beaten my score please help meeeeee!!

  25. franciscabrel Says:

    I love sushi ^^
    Really nice software.
    I have a score of 2200 after 3 days and a friend has 2500 but play since the beginning, it’s so difficult to obtain this score, I can’t understand how the top world have +3500… What is the maximum score ?
    I have an other ask, some games are mode difficult than other (puzzle is more difficult than meteors), do the score change with difficulty of game ?
    Last ask : Mistakes seems loose score, but how many precisely ?
    Describe the algorithm of the game would be great ^^
    (sorry for my english, I am french)

  26. John Says:

    I love WHTBB on facebook but I have a problem with the invite friends side of things. I’ve invited the same 20 friends about 5 times and ignored the other 180 – how do I get past that?

  27. magdalena Says:

    I havea project to do! I can’t stop playing…help!

  28. magdalena Says:

    very user friendly! great idea…sorta like brain age on the ds, but with networking capabilities wonderful!!!

  29. peekaa Says:

    I find this game quite entertaining also…
    But just to get clear, this game is not about the fact how smart somebody is but how fast somebody can process informations he gets. How smart somebody can’t be measured with this…

  30. Euthy Says:

    Hi! It’s a funny game, I like it!
    Especially good to have a little break when stuck with work!

    But how can those guy got 3000+? :O

    Cheers,
    E

  31. somanath Says:

    Hey.. Congrats on your launch! I just scored 2264 pts and proud to be one of the biggest brain of my country…lol.. Thanks for the brillinat game.. And any more this sorta games to come in the near future??

    Merry!

  32. Mohit Says:

    hey..
    i really like the game..its amazing..:)
    u must introduce a new series of games within the test..apart from the 8 u have currently..(although i am good only at 3-4 out of the 8 yet)
    somehow i feel, the way the game is played affects the score – for eg. i could score better when i could enter number from the keyboard as compared with the mouse..
    and also the rankings – i feel that ranking is not just about highest score but also dependent on number of games played to achieve that score..
    or may be its just one parameter u might want to add..
    graphics and music are cool…
    and i thought u were goint to tell us more about ur music and gliding careers too…lol!!
    im a musician myself so got interested..:p

  33. mohit Says:

    btw i scored 2564 in 20 games…:)

  34. Mohamed Says:

    I totally agree with what peekaa said .. you can’t judge someone smartness this way .. :)

    but it’s really a wonderfull game to play .. i’ve got 25++ till now and the surprise is that i started with a cat brain at the begening :)

    but it’s really frustrating that some pple are cheating ,, especially some of those world ranked guyes .. )x

    i hope that no body be able to cheat any more ..

  35. Omar Says:

    Hey, I really like the game it’s so wonderfull i scored 2506, is it a good score? I have a question, why can’t we play the game on playfish website?
    hope hearing from you soon.

    Omar!

  36. Ryan Says:

    I think da game is addictive lol i got a score of 2896 and me m8 got 2844 me and her keep beating each other lol great game

  37. Olivier Says:

    I discover the game just now and it look fantastic.
    Im well suprised by this blog and I wish you a lot of sucess!

  38. Philippe Says:

    Is it faster with a keyboard than a mouse? I just have a mouse, since I’m playing on a laptop… I’m at 2461 now, and it’s getting harder and harder…

    Thanks for this brilliant game!

    Philippe

  39. DirdenT Says:

    Great game! Been having fun with my bragging rights :). Just got 2900 today. I can see how it is possible to get 3000+ even 3500. I’ll probably get my 3000 soon seeing how my best of all games totals 3032. So it IS possible. Just gotta get the right combo of games and perform at my best.

  40. burningf Says:

    great game, but it still has a problem
    i got 1260 in calculation ( missing sign )
    but i wasn’t sent because this game doesnt accept a score more than 1200 in missing signs
    can this be fixed ?
    thnx

  41. gamer Says:

    i wish someone can publish the ranks like, for the biggest brain game: cyborgs. so on and also for the word challenge, am very curious to find out!

  42. Felipe Says:

    Hey I have a problem that i have tried to find the answer throught many forums, discution boards and i havent found an answer yet.
    When i play other flash games in Facebook i can open normally but there is something with the PLAYFISH games and is that when it shows the letter loading it loads fast but if stop after in the INITIALIZING… title in Who has the biggest brain and WORD CHALLENGE, in the case of BOWLING BUDDIES is in the PREPARING YOUR BOWLING SHOES… GET READY! title.

    i have tried deleting my cache in firefox but it doesnt chage nothing, also i have tried uninstalling and installing again flash player but it doesnt make nothing either.
    I dont know what i can do
    please help.

  43. BigBrain Says:

    I love this game, I’ve scored 2707 without cheating. It’s a matter of playing it until your four best games come up in one round. My average though is only about 2200

  44. shel reynolds Says:

    Great game.

    For those who posted about about the “cheaters” because they had scores over 4000 etc.. it has nothing to do with Cheating.. it has to do with typing speed. If you only type 2 wpm you can bet you wont be getting too high of a score. If you type over 80wpm like myself, then your score will definitely be much higher.

  45. William Says:

    Whoa! Now theres some great FB applications to add! Facebook is more fun now with Playfish around! Ive installed all four games now, and expecting more!

  46. agostina Says:

    jaja me encanta estoss juegos sigan prosesandoo ejje besos les deja peque!!

  47. khthelegend Says:

    nice : )

  48. Роман Says:

    Любопытно написано, но мне кажется, что автор что-то не договаривает :)

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