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Zynga pulls Mafia Wars from Myspace

Mafia Wars legal issues not to blame as Myspace exodus continues

Casual developer Zynga has discontinued its game Mafia Wars on social network site Myspace, but the decision does not appear to have anything to do with legal disputes over the game.

Trying to access the game on Myspace now brings up a short message indicating that, "Zynga is discontinuing Mafia Wars on Myspace beginning April 18th, 2011". No reason is give for the decision and players are directed instead to the official website.

It is unlikely the move has anything to do with long-running disputes over the game's copyright, with Zynga settling out of court with mobile developer Digital Chocolate, who released a game by the same name previously. Zynga in turn has sued Playdom over similarities with its game Mobsters, but this has also been settled out of court.

Instead the game simply appears to be the latest in a series of exits from Myspace by games companies, with RockYou removing all of its top titles from the service in recent months. Playdom has also closed two of its seven most popular apps.

Zynga still has a number of games on the service, but more minor titles such as Rollercoaster Kingdom - rather than the most popular Ville series. Rumours suggested that Zynga had been close to acquiring Myspace, but backed out when owner News Corp. asked for shares rather than cash.

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