|Release date(s)||Autumn 2008|
Social network game
Happy Farm is a social network game, or massively multiplayer online game, based on farm management simulation. It is played predominantly by users in Mainland China and Taiwan, and is the most popular MMOG in terms of players. At the height of its popularity, there were 23 million daily active users, logging on to the game at least every 24 hours.
Happy Farm was developed by Chinese social game developer 5 Minutes. Its development was complete in May 2008, testing was complete in July the same year, and the game was released in Autumn 2008. It allows players to grow crops, trade with others, sell produce, and steal from neighbors. The game was influenced by the Japanese RPG series, Harvest Moon.
The game peaked during the end of the 2000s, and in the following years, experienced a sharp decline in players. As of 2012, it had practically vanished.
At the height of its popularity, there were 23 million daily active users, logging on to the game at least every 24 hours. Approximately 15 million urban white-collar workers were estimated to have spent more than five hours a day on Happy Farm. Because of its popularity, the game's host, Tencent QQ, capped the number of new players per day at 2 million.
A number of later games have used similar game mechanics, such as Sunshine Farm, Happy Farmer, Happy Fishpond, and Happy Pig Farm. Happy Farm went on to inspire many more farming social network games, including FarmVille, Farm Town, Country Story, Barn Buddy, Sunshine Ranch, and Happy Harvest, as well as parodies such as Jungle Extreme and Farm Villain. Wired included Happy Farm in its list of "The 15 Most Influential Games of the Decade" at #14, for its major influence on social network gaming, particularly for having "inspired a dozen Facebook clones," the largest being Zynga's FarmVille. In 2009, Harvest Moon developers Marvellous Entertainment eventually released their own farming social network game, Bokujo Monogatari, for the Japanese site Mixi.
- Farm Town
- Harvest Moon (series)
- List of massively multiplayer online games
- Social network game
- "外媒關注開心農場：中國擁有最多「在線農民」 - 大洋新聞". Game.dayoo.com. Retrieved 2010-05-06.
- "China's Social Gaming Landscape: What's Coming Next". Readwriteweb.com. Retrieved 2010-05-06.
- "Chinaas growing addiction: online farming games |". Techgearx.com. 2009-10-29. Retrieved 2010-05-06.
- Elliott Ng (2009-10-29). "China’s growing addiction: online farming games". VentureBeat. Retrieved 2010-05-06.
- Nutt, Christian (October 11, 2009). "GDC China: Chinese Indie Game Trends and Opportunities". Gamasutra. Retrieved 10 September 2011.
- Kohler, Chris (May 19, 2010). "Farm Wars: How Facebook Games Harvest Big Bucks". Wired. Retrieved 12 September 2011.
- "The Happy Farm explosion | 八八吧". 88 Bar. 2009-11-16. Retrieved 2010-05-06.
- "China wants multiplayer, micropayments - Internet - News". Zdnetasia.com. 2010-03-16. Retrieved 2010-05-06.
- "Facebook》到開心農場歡呼收割". China Times. 2009-09-01. Retrieved 12 September 2011. (Translation)
- Kohler, Chris (December 24, 2009). "14. Happy Farm (2008)". The 15 Most Influential Games of the Decade. Wired. p. 2. Retrieved 10 September 2011.
- Spencer (May 6, 2010). "The Rise Of FarmVille And How Harvest Moon Can Grow From It". Siliconera. Retrieved 12 September 2011.
- Michiko Nagai (October 27, 2009). "Mixiアプリモバイルが開始、11月には課金APIの公開も". CNET. Retrieved 12 September 2011.