Local Tech Wire

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. – Playdom, the red-hot developer of social games that runs a studio in Chapel Hill, recently raised $33 million in venture capital. And just days ago, the Walt Disney Co. acquired casual game developer Tapulous.

So why are social – or casual – games so hot? After all, Playdom itself is on an acquisition binge, having bought Chapel Hill-based Merscom in April.

Jeff Clavier, an angel investor whose firm was the launch pad for Tapulous, shared his thoughts with Timothy Hay at the Wall Street Journal’s Venture Capital Dispatch,

“We’re seeing an explosion of social games on Facebook and on Apple distribution platforms. Suddenly, games are the premium place for people to interact. What’s really fascinating with this new wave of social games is the wide footprint they’ve built, in terms of gamers. I was on a plane from Paris recently. Everyone on the plane was playing with iPads and iPhones. … It’s taken off in a way no one thought of, because games are so integrated with all other platforms.”

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