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Soon You’ll Be Able to Play Games in Facebook Messenger App

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Amit Srivatsa
Amit Srivatsa Dec 7, 2016

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’d know that Facebook has rolled out a new feature for the messenger. Named Instant Games, it allows users to  play games like Pac-Man and Galaga from within the chat window. Just tap on the game controller option, and you’ll be directed to the game. This feature will be made available on both iOS and Android and on the website as well.

Once you finish playing the game to your heart’s content, you can post your high score, which will be sent to the person you’re chatting with. They will also be prompted to play the game and beat your high score. 

Facebook says, “We’ve made it very simple to start playing: In the latest version of the app, open a conversation with a friend (or friends!), tap on the game controller icon just below where you type your message, and choose a game to start playing right away. After you finish a round, people in the conversation will see your score and will have the opportunity to challenge you back. People can also discover games within the Messenger search field, or on Facebook News Feed where they can play solo or challenge friends back in Messenger. Games on Messenger are the first to be rolled out on Facebook’s new Instant Games cross-platform gaming experience.”

If you’re worried about how fast the games will load, worry not. Since they are delivered by HTML5, there will be no bothersome lags or heavy downloads. Presently, players can only compete via high score rankings. Real-time multiplayer option is not available, but we’re hoping Facebook will add that soon.

For the time being, the selection includes Galaga, Pac-Man, Space Invaders, and Words With Friends Frenzy. All these games are free of ads and contain in-game purchases.

Players also have the option to sketch over screenshots of their high scores and share the games on their Facebook News Feed. This will allow other players to jump in instantly and start a game loop, which could be great fun.

Developers can only access a closed beta version of Instant Games, and that too by applying for it. For the common man, though, the games are accessible in 30 regions, including Canada, Russia, the U.S., Germany, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. 

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