Zynga loses Words with Friends co-creators

Zynga is still leaking higher-ups (and stock value) like a cheesecloth canteen, the most recent departure of Words with Friends co-creators Paul and David Bettner confirms. VentureBeat reports that the pair, whose gaming start-up Newtoy was acquired by Zynga in November 2010, have left the beleaguered social gaming giant.

The brothers declined to comment to VentureBeat on their future plans or their time spent at Zynga. “We are still very excited about the future and feel like we are at the beginning,” Paul Bettner said.

The brothers founded Newtoy after their former employer and Age of Empires developer Ensemble Studios was shuttered by Microsoft in 2009. Their departure from Zynga comes right on the heels of darkened fiscal prospects in the company’s immediate future.

Zynga co-founder and CEO Mark Pincus explained his company’s lowered financial guidance to employees on its blog yesterday, predicting lower-than-expected earnings. The company’s stock has dropped by about 16 percent from the close of the markets yesterday to today.

The upper levels of Zynga are starting to look pretty drafty, as the Bettner brothers’ departure follows 8 executive exits since disappointing earnings posted in July, according to GamesIndustry International. The company is also gearing up for a suit-and-countersuit legal battle over copyright infringement claims from Electronic Arts.

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