Bejeweled maker PopCap bets on Facebook casino-game gold rush

Ever since the Justice Department opened the door to the legalization of online gambling, the leading creators of social games are feeling increasingly lucky. PopCap Games just launched Lucky Gem Casino with a collection of seven slot machines themed after its brands such as Bejeweled and Zuma. It marks the entry of the Electronic Arts subsidiary into the increasingly active casino game market.

With $2M in funding, social game studio Seismic comes out of stealth

Hardcore game veterans who worked at the now-defunct Pandemic Studios have started a new social game studio called Seismic Games. Unveiled for the first time today, Seismic plans to create games that are social, but at the same time it will emphasize some of the traits of traditional games, which are more immersive, emotionally engaging, and anchored in a believable world.

How Zynga’s IPO went from a $20B valuation to $8.9B in five months

When credible reports about Zynga’s upcoming IPO filing started flying this July, expectations for the social gaming giant’s value were running $15 billion to $20 billion. Now, with Zynga detailing the offering ahead of trading set to start December 15th, the actual offering price could value the company from $5.9 billion to $6.99 billion, or $7.6 billion to $8.9 billion including employee stock options.