Zynga to establish new standalone platform

Social gaming powerhouse Zynga has unveiled plans to take its games beyond Facebook to a dedicated online portal.

Currently titled Zynga Direct, the new platform will be a standalone community separate from Facebook that will act as a hub for all of the company’s titles, according to Gamasutra.

It claims the service will be "the most connected social gaming site in the world".

Zynga also announced five new games. For Facebook, the firm is working on the fantasy-themed CastleVille, hidden object game Hidden Chronicles and new franchise Zynga Casino Featuring Zynga Bingo.

The social games studio is also growing its mobile portfolio with Zynga Poker Mobile Web, Words With Friends and FarmVille Express, which will be released on Facebook’s mobile apps platform.

Finally, Zynga revealed that Mafia Wars 2 is now available on Google+. It launched on Facebook on Monday, and is one of three titles available on Google’s platform, along with CityVille and Zynga Poker.

"We challenge ourselves every day with the question ‘how do we get you guys to play?’" said Zynga CEO Marcus Pincus at a press event. "You don’t have time to sit and play games, yet we really think that play is the macro theme activity that we all need to fit back into our lives."

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