Google has the best search. That lead to its awesome email service. Which lead to assembling some fairly nice cloud based applications such as Calendar and Documents. And acquiring YouTube, of course, which seemed a stretch to their services, but I’m glad they did it, so YT would have enough backend to keep going. Maps, Earth, and SketchUp are a nice trio that make sense. Most of their other “Beta” products seem to fit the strategy pretty well. I always look forward to new Google products, and have loved their strategy and honesty, but Lively feels wrong to me.
The last thing the world needs is another virtual world. Jeez, with the number of Virtual World/ 3D chat programs released just this year, you would think Second Life was the most successful product the game world has ever seen. Check this chart on TechCrunch that shows the number of virtual world products released just this year. There are 14 titles with an aggregate VC funding of $345MM.
To me, this move by Google seems a little reminiscent of Microsoft chasing every software opportunity that shows up. Maybe I’ll be proven wrong. I have to admit, I have not even tried it since my household is filled with Macs, and it is not available on Macs yet. I will try it out of obligation, but I don’t want to. I’ll take my chat in text, thank you, so I can get it on my phone and on any browser that I happen to be using.
-Jeff Tunnell, Game Maker
Make It Big In Games