There were four major points in the deal:
1. It looked to me like Facebook was going to let Zynga run real money gambling games on Facebook. -> THIS IS HUGE. <-
This is open to some interpretation though:
“If Facebook allows real money gambling games on the Facebook web site in countries where Zynga has real money gambling games, Zynga will subsequently launch such games on the Facebook web site, if certain conditions are met by Facebook.”
2. In general, this agreement was net positive for Zynga. It greatly increased their degrees of freedom in developing Zynga.com and mobile by eliminating covenants that prohibited them from doing certain things and requiring them to do others (like using FB ads and payments). Removing these restrictions is very important for Zynga as it becomes more independent from FB.
For example: “In addition, the Addendum No. 1 Amendment provides that Zynga’s right to cross-promote any games that are off of the Facebook web site from Zynga services that use Facebook data and to use e-mail addresses obtained from Facebook, will be limited by Facebook’s standard terms of service, subject to certain exceptions.”
This seems to allow Zynga to point all their Facebook users to their mobile games and Zynga.com – this is a HUGE marketing opportunity and could dramatically increase Zynga’s traffic on those platforms.
3. Facebook is unlikely to develop its own games. Zuckerberg is not a gamer and the culture probably would not work for developing games. Plus it makes no strategic sense.
4. Parity with other game companies is not going to be bad for Zynga. Most of the “special treatment” stuff didn’t seem to be doing much anyway.
ZNGA should have gone up not down based on this announcement.