NGS Partners with Family Village Facebook Game to Help Players Build Family Tree

Last year I reported on a new genealogy-based game created for Facebook users. The game, Family Village from Fanium, invites the player to build a thriving village populated with avatars representing the player’s family and ancestors. Now Fanium is teaming up with the National Genealogical Society to help players create a family tree. More details are available in the following BusinessWire article:

National Genealogical Society Partners with Family Village Facebook Game to Help Players Build Family Tree

Funium and the National Genealogical Society (NGS) today announced a partnership that will allow players of Family Village, Funium’s popular Facebook game, to further explore their family trees by accessing a number of NGS resources and research aids. The collaboration was announced at the Federation of Genealogical Societies 2012 Conference in Birmingham, Alabama.

In coordination with the announcement, NGS will launch a separate landing page on their website tailored entirely to Family Village players. Featuring a customized step-by-step guide complete with instructional videos, the page grants Family Village users free access to materials typically reserved for NGS members, including ancestor charts and family group sheets. Players will be guided on how to collect more information about their relatives and ancestors, complementing their progress in Family Village.

“We are thrilled to join forces with Funium,” said Jordan Jones, president-elect of NGS. “Introducing the Family Village audience to NGS’s resources aligns with our mission to help serve and grow the genealogical community. We are excited to be able to share our knowledge about family history with the Family Village players.”

Click here to read the full article.


“Family Village” to Officially Launch on Facebook Next Tuesday

Imagine working and living in the same cabin with your great-great-great-great grandparents.

With “Family Village,” a new Facebook game launching next week, that’s exactly what amateur genealogists will be able to do.

The new computer game, produced by Draper developer Funium, allows players to import their ancestors into a “Sims”-styled virtual world where they can build homes, go to work and share experiences just like in real life. The game has its official launch Tuesday.

This week, Funium announced that it received $1.2 million in new funding from both Utah entrepreneur Jim Sorenson and genealogy site FamilyLink, which was co-founded by investor Paul Allen.

“The vision of the game is to help people who play it to understand that we are all a part of one great world family,” said Funium chief executive Jeff Wells.

Wells came up with the idea for “Family Village” more than four years ago while working on his family genealogy one night.

“I stayed up all night and found it very engaging,” he said. “I thought it would be a very good game concept — finding historical documents about our ancestors and finding out about ancestors I didn’t know anything about.”

A team of about two dozen programmers began working on the game in May. About 8,000 players have been testing the game to hone its playability.

Read the full article in the April 12, 2011 edition of the Salt Lake Tribune. Releases New Personalized Family Memory Game

Over the years I’ve seen a number of games produced for genealogists. This new one from MyHeritage seems the most promising of any that I’ve seen, and it looks like lot of fun. The following press release was received from Daniel Horowitz at

Online family tree game makes family history engaging for the entire family
London, England & Tel Aviv, Israel – December 28,, the most popular family network on the web, today released a new online family memory game, as a fun and free way to create cross-generational interest in family history.

“The new game makes family history more fun and engaging for the whole family”, memorygame-0said Daniel Horowitz, Chief Genealogist at “It’s a prime example of the free, innovative and user friendly products available on, which demonstrate our leadership in bringing family history to the masses.”

The game, one of the first ever online family tree games, automatically generates beautiful personalized picture cards of close relatives and ancestors – based on each user’s family tree. Following the same rules as a typical memory card game, users can play online against other family members, or solo against the clock. With a webcam option, players can even include a live picture of themselves in one pair of the cards – providing added entertainment particularly for younger players.
The game is recommended for all users with a family tree that features photos of relatives.

memorygame-1 Played by the young and old alike, the game is ideal for educating the younger generation about their ancestors and introducing them to genealogy as a hobby. Families who enjoy the online version of the game can order the actual printed cards from for playing on-the-go – such as on holiday travels and at family reunions. This is made possible through’s new partnership with, with a deck of handmade personalized cards available from as little as $20 (plus shipping). The printed cards feature up to 30 relatives of a user’s choice (totalling 60 cards) and include additional information on birth dates and locations of relatives listed in the family tree.

About is the most popular family network on the web. Millions of families around the world enjoy having a private place for their families to keep in touch.’s Smart Matches™ technology empowers users with an exciting and innovative way to find relatives and explore their family history. With all family information stored in a secure site, is the ideal place to share family photos, and celebrate and preserve special family moments. With 650 million profiles, 16 million family trees, and available in 36 languages, is nurturing family relationships and uniting families worldwide. For more information please visit


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