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Will there soon be video games on LinkedIn?

A break from the pyramid schemes of your high school friends

Will there soon be video games on LinkedIn? A break from the pyramid schemes of your high school friends

Everyone is on LinkedIn, even though it's the most boring social network in the world. And perhaps that's why yesterday Microsoft, which owns the social network, announced the imminent introduction of gaming on the platform to increase user interaction beyond the usual congratulatory posts (or more often self-congratulatory ones) and messages from your high school friends who are now investment experts and want to involve you in some pyramid scheme. According to the news, initially reported by TechCrunch, LinkedIn is developing gaming features that are expected to be puzzle-based in the style of the popular game Wordle to attract users, with tentative titles such as Queens, Inference, and Crossclimb. But it's not yet clear what the official name will be. TechCrunch also pointed to various developers/researchers as sources of the news, especially Nima Owji, who posted screenshots on X of what appears to be a demo showcasing features such as player scores organized by workplaces, likely with the perspective of a team-building format or some sort of competition among colleagues. Although LinkedIn has confirmed that it is indeed working on developing gaming experiences, there is still no official launch date.

According to a LinkedIn spokesperson, the introduction of puzzle-based games aims to make the platform more enjoyable, also deepening the relationships between users, which are currently almost non-existent. However, the spokesperson emphasized that the images shared by researchers like Owji are not the latest versions, hinting at further developments in the pipeline. It's still unclear, by the way, whether the parent company Microsoft (a gaming titan with properties like Xbox, Activision Blizzard, and ZeniMax) is involved in this project or if it's letting the project be developed internally. The decision to introduce gaming into a platform like LinkedIn reflects tech companies' desire to enter the lucrative gaming market, which is among the most popular in terms of revenue and engagement and is thus perfect for boosting traffic and user retention. Similar experiments had already been famously attempted by Facebook – which, however, was not very successful. But perhaps, precisely LinkedIn, with its professional atmosphere, will be a more enjoyable platform to use during office downtime compared to Facebook.