I was trusted to make significant contributions to the project. It didn't feel too much like an intern who was just given the easy tasks that had little impact on the company. I was able to take away a lot of significant experience that will come in very handy in my future as a video game programmer.
I wished there was a little more hand-holding at the beginning of the internship when I had literally no idea of how a company runs its day to day business. I wanted clear and simple instructions about what I should be doing and how to set up the technology I had to work with. Instead I spent a lot of time trying to figure things out when sometimes asking for help would not have been a bad idea.
Advice to Potential Interns
If you're looking to work in the game industry, Zynga is a great company to intern for. There are a very wide variety of genres that Zynga games cover. Many associate just the "Farmville" genre with Zynga but they are also responsible for a number of word games (Words With Friends), arcade style game (Bubble Safari) and unannounced projects in development. Chances are, if you tell your recruiter what kind of games you'd like to work on, they will be able to find something. Although Zynga's stock isn't doing well, stock prices do not always reflect how profitable a company is. Zynga is a profitable company that offers very competitive internship and full-time salaries.
Advice to Management
A little more organization for young interns' first days could help them enjoy their experiences more and contribute earlier on. Having more diversity in terms of age could be beneficial as well because in general it's easier for new college graduates to bond with other new college graduates and thus develop relationships with coworkers beyond a mentor/mentee relationship.