Kapalka isn't suggesting that social games as a whole are going to die. Instead, he says it's the end of a "golden era," where the possibilities of the genre seemed limitless. Now that social gaming has taken root, the realities are becoming more evident: the extraordinary amount of competition, harsher restrictions from Facebook, slowing growth and dwindling margins will make it increasingly difficult for new social games to catch on. "Facebook can't go that much faster," Kapalka added. (Of course, Facebook would disagree.)
While Facebook and social games factor into PopCap's success so far, Kapalka doesn't seem too concerned about any sluggishness in the sector. The reason? PopCap has its hands in enough places to feel secure. "I feel PopCap's really diversified over the last ten years, we've never been necessarily the biggest company doing Xbox games or mobile games, but we've always been able to keep our hands in all these different areas, and sort of shift as necessary to whichever platforms are doing well." Plants vs. Zombies, for example, will continue its expansion to Xbox this week, and Nintendo DS next year.