Remembering Farmville

Do you remember Farmville? Me, too! Okay good article everyone, let’s go home.

A common thumbnail of the original Farmville. It shows two farmers (that have been altered to resemble Amandoll and Junior Sneerist, Zach), along with some chickens, a duck, a pig, a sheep, a bunny, and some crops all surrounding the Farmville logo.

By the way the caption to this is an emoticon that symbolizes the dissatisfied face with the slanted mouth.

LOL SYKE. Today while talking to Junior Sneerist, Zach, the reminiscing part of my brain was activated. We strolled through memories of Oregon Trail, I was taught about the other Trails which I will inevitably play and review, and for some reason, we landed on the Wikipedia page for Zynga, the breakout social video game company of the 2000s.

Did you know that Take-Two Interactive bought Zynga just last year, in the year 2022? Did you know Zynga was still a functioning company and that it didn’t fizzle away in 2012 as I had assumed for some reason? I guess I learned that they also did Words With Friends later, but still. Did you know that that other company, in the year 2022, bought Zynga for an incredible 12.7 Billion with a big ol’ capital B dollars?? Words With Friends can’t be worth that much! Are people just throwing around numbers and pretending that’s what money is? Is that what money is?? How can money be worth anything if Zynga, a dying has-been of a company, was somehow worth $12.7 billion to a group of anyones?

Dazzled by this outrageous nonsense, I made my way to the Farmville page on Wikipedia. I make it my business to never read an entire article on Wikipedia unless it is necessary — and this was not necessary. I read just enough. I read to exactly what I needed to know to inspire this writing on this day. From the introduction:

“On September 27, 2020, Zynga announced that it would discontinue the first FarmVille on Facebook on December 31, 2020, as Facebook was to stop supporting games running on Flash Player — required by FarmVille — on that day.”

Professor Wikipedia

The first Farmville existed all the way until 2020! 2020! That cursed year that caused so much destruction to everyone’s lives made a last stab into the hearts of Man by also killing off the original Farmville! Maybe it would have made more of an impression if we had known it was still around and hadn’t turned to ash in 2011, like Farmville was one of those old movie stars who live to age 100 without anyone being aware until news breaks that they have passed on.

A screen capture from Facebook of a comment by Flippy White on Amandoll's wall on August 14, 2009. She asks: "Which is more entertaining: Pet Society, Farmville (or whatever the hell it's called), or Restaurant City?" Amandoll replied to this 13 years ago by saying: "I haven't played Restaurant City but I really like Farmville. I like the little animals that you harvest from."
Pet Society! omg. Anyway look at how shameless I seem to be, but I assure you that I was hurting as I typed those words.

If you are in my demographic of Human Adults aged 25 to 65, I expect that you were lured into playing Farmville 1. It was the first viral social game — “the Syphilis of Games” — and it took many of us skeptics from “sneering hard at the concept of an extremely popular stupid game filled with pointless stupidity” to “plowing imaginary fields and harvesting imaginary crops around the clock” in an embarrassingly short amount of time.

It wasn’t just because everyone else was locked into this confusing addiction — it was also because the livestock animals were cute. I think. Honestly it’s been so long since I’ve played it that I only remember that it was a whole thing and I was part of it. I also can’t remember when I stopped playing it. I don’t think it was a conscious decision. I think I just forgot about it one day the same as the rest of you.

An image from the Farmville Wiki that shows a collection of the Farmville livestock. There are the usual animals like donkeys, goats, cows, and chickens, but also animals like tortoises, pink cows, and alien cows.
As far as awful games go, I still stand by the fact that these are pretty cute animal designs. Look at them moo cows!

Anyway, I know that some people dedicated serious time to their pretend farm. They spent real money. They probably played long after everyone else was distracted by new pointless games and soon, games on the phones — the apps which siphon away our ability to be productive still to this very day. You know there were people who were committed to their Farmville experience since the very first year, 2009. So when I saw this:

“On September 27, 2020, Zynga announced that it would discontinue the first FarmVille on Facebook on December 31, 2020, as Facebook was to stop supporting games running on Flash Player—required by FarmVille—on that day.”

I could only think of those people.

How many meltdowns happened on September 27, 2020? And again on December 31, 2020? You know there were some but how many?? There are a lot of people in this world now — too many to really comprehend. So were there like twelve meltdowns or twelve thousand? Were there a million meltdowns on those days! More?? What are numbers! What are percentages of the population! What is a fair guess!

I’m about to have a meltdown on this day!

Sneer Back

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