The Game Developer Conference (GDC) is underway in San Francisco and Google is there in full force unveiling a new set of tools to enhance Google Play Games for Developers and in the long run, Gamers. New features have been announced, including a new indie corner to promote Indie Games, an easier way to connect with friends without a Google+ account and a new game recording API.
The Indie Corner is a way to promote games from independent developers, the showcase has already begun in Google Play with apps from a bunch of quality indie developers on display. Google is looking to grow the collection though, asking developers to submit their games for inclusion in the collection at g.co/indiecornersubmission.
The new Gamer Friends feature is another display of a move away from Google+ as their unifying platform, with a tie-in to Gamer IDs that GOogel introduced last month. Gamer friends, in Google’s words is ‘where your players can add and interact with their friends from within the Google Play Games app (without needing a Google+ account).
Google also announced a bunch of new analytics tools for tracking users habits in game when purchasing in-game content.
Lastly, there’s more on recording video or streaming live video of gaming to the web. With Australian Android gamers now able to access YouTube Gaming, there’s now a broad call for more ways to stream games easily and this will be coming with the new tools. Google will be adding a way for developers to add video recording to their app, letting users share videos on YouTube or live streaming their games in real time.
It’s an interesting new set of tools, and should hopefully broaden the appeal of Google Play Games, which is quite frankly one of the better services that Google runs, but more improvements are always welcome. Look out for these new features in the next few months.