OpenFeint, the once popular social gaming platform, has just announced that the service will go offline in the near future. OpenFeint was acquired by Gree in 2011 for roughly $104 million. The service allowed users to create profiles and play iOS games with their friends long before Game Center was even on Apple’s radar. At OpenFeint’s peak, the service had 180 million users and was integrated with over 900 games including Tiny Wings and Fruit Ninja.
Developers who use OpenFeint in their games have less than a month to transition their games to either Game Center or another alternative. To make matters even worse for developers, they will have to rush to get their games approved before the holiday freeze on the App Store. OpenFeint will officially go offline on December 14th.
In the end, Apple’s Game Center was likely the main reason for OpenFeint’s failure, but let’s keep in mind that the writing was likely on the wall the moment that Gree acquired the service. The future of OpenFeint has been on the minds of many since the Gree acquisition, and it’s likely that a lot of developers started looking towards Game Center a long time ago.
Game Center is Apple’s in-house social gaming platform that easily integrates with iOS apps. Anyone with an Apple ID already has a Game Center account and can access it via the Game Center app, which comes preinstalled with every iOS device and Mac running OS X 10.8. We’ll miss you OpenFeint. Hopefully Game Center can live up to your legacy.