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Microsoft recruits CrowdStar in Bing social games push

Messenger and MSN games will follow as MS seeks to rival Facebook

Social game studio CrowdStar has confirmed a collaboration with Microsoft, as part of an effort to promote Bing as a social games platform.

Microsoft now offers a number of gaming portals, including Windows Live Messenger and MSN Games, but is currently looking towards its relaunched search engine Bing as a driver for games.

CrowdStar, which with 50 million monthly active users is billed as "the second most popular social game maker in the world," will offer a number of its titles initially on Bing, and later on Microsoft's other services.

The games will offer both Facebook and Windows Live integration.

"We're excited about the potential of Microsoft's and Bing's new gaming platforms and believe they are a great fit for CrowdStar to expand its portfolio of hit games in ways that are sure to delight customers," said Niren Hiro, CEO of CrowdStar.

Added Microsoft's senior global director of PC and Mobile Gaming, Kevin Unangst, "CrowdStar's impressive lineup of popular titles have made them a leader in the social games space. We're taking a bold new approach to bridging the worlds of social and casual games, and are thrilled to work with CrowdStar to bring that vision to life."

CrowdStar will use the Sibblingz cross-platform engine to bring its games to Microsoft's sites.

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Alec Meer: A 10-year veteran of scribbling about video games, Alec primarily writes for Rock, Paper, Shotgun, but given any opportunity he will escape his keyboard and mouse ghetto to write about any and all formats.
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