Amazon Gets into Social Gaming, Debuts Amazon Game Studios

Amazon has made its first foray into the land of cash grabs – I’m sorry, social gaming – with Living Classics. By the way, that also means Amazon has its own in-house game studio, simply dubbed Amazon Game Studios.

Living Classics is a Facebook game, which means it has all the hallmarks of what is surely by now its own genre – the almost constant encouragement to pester your friends to play the game and the option to pay real money to get fake money to help you not have to play the game to unlock power-ups and new stages. You can get more energy by getting more friends on board, which will allow you to replay levels to get a higher score and more coins, thus avoiding having to pay real cash for coins.

The game itself is pretty minimal. The “Classics” refers to classic works of literature like Alice in Wonderland and King Arthur. In the game, you are presented with a picture based on one of those works. Some objects in the picture are moving. Click on them. Repeat. The objective of the game is to find a family of foxes that have become separated from one another, and reunite them, which looks to be the cutesy Skinnerian reward of the game. It’s sort of like those I Spy books, but you’re looking for movement rather than specific objects. As you complete pictures, you’ll receive coins that you can use to unlock new pictures, as well as quests you can complete, which will also earn those coins. I’ll bet you can guess another way you can get coins.

But, it’s worth bearing in mind that this is Amazon’s first crack at the whole game thing. In order to continue on their gaming quest, Amazon will need to pony up a little cash themselves – for labor costs. For all interested, Amazon is now hiring for its fledgling game studio. Who knows, maybe we’ll see some more meaty offerings from Amazon Game Studios in the future.