updated 07:20 pm EST, Fri November 16, 2012
New owner Gree warns of 'poor player experience' and 'disruptions'
Third party social network scoring system for iOS and Android OpenFeint will soon be closing its doors. On December 14, "all OpenFeint network calls will be nonfunctional, which may result in service disruptions to your game and a poor player experience," new owner Gree claims.
Gree has said in an email to application developers that the migration from OpenFeint to Gree "can take less than a week" in some cases. Migration to Gree is likely to cause incompatibilities with old versions of the iOS, making revised versions of the apps incompatible with older hardware. Additionally, older applications may have been orphaned, abandoned, or outright ignored by developers and may not be updated, causing issues with the lack of OpenFeint servers to communicate with the application.
Migration from OpenFeint to Gree before server closure will allow developers to retain high scores and other user data. Additionally, updated with the removal of the OpenFeint SDK will require a re-approval of the app by the relevant store review personnel, possibly causing an extended unavailability.
MacNN spoke with a developer who said that the migration wasn't worth the trouble. "We're just going to Gamecenter," he said. "The users will make new high scores. I don't know why Gree needs to outright close the OpenFeint servers, it's going to be difficult to support older devices without them."
The email to the developers closes by saying "we're focused on helping you solve your biggest challenges and providing you with the most robust social toolset, that's why we're directing all our efforts toward improving and developing [the] GREE Platform."
OpenFeint launched in 2009, predating Apple's Gamecenter by more than a year. A version of OpenFeint was released for Android in late 2010. OpenFeint was acquired by Gree last year for $104 million, a staggering 368 times its annual revenue. Earlier this year, Gree announced its intention to migrate all OpenFeint services to its own platform.