Seeing the success of Farmville and other social games, Break Media is getting into gaming across its roster of men-oriented video sites. The first game, MMA FightPicker, is launching today on Break’s martial-arts video site, CagePotato. It is a pretty basic fantasy sports game where you pick a line-up of fighters and get points, in the form of potato chips, every time your fighters win. The potato chips also act as a virtual currency, which can be used to advance within the game. Every time you play, you get some potato chips, but you can also buy them.
MMA FightPicker is Break’s first game, unless you count the Tiger Woods game where he is chased by his wife. It is just the first of many games the company plans to roll out across its eight sites, including its flagship Break.com. The games are being developed by a new game studio in Shanghai, China that already employs more than three dozen developers who are ready to churn out a variety of games. “We started this studio so we could knock out social games across our properties,” says CEO Keith Richman.
Break will also be selling ads next to the games on its sites, and bundling those sals in with its existing video and banner ads. With 30 million unique visitors a month across its properties, Break has enough built-in distribution to sell ads on its own. And then there is the virtual currency. “I think other publishers will realize that gaming can add legitimate revenue,” says Richman. Beyond Break’s own sites, the games will live on Facebook as well, where they will live as standalone Facebook apps.