According to Google, every 3 out of 4 Android users access Google Play, previously known as the Android Market, on a daily basis. Google Play is a popular online distribution platform for Android OS based applications and an online digital media store owned by the search engine giant. Over a billion Android-based devices are used for playing games. It is for this reason that Google Play Games and SDK for Android, iOS, etc. have gained tremendous popularity and user-base worldwide.
Just like every year, this year as well the Game Developers Conference (GDC) was held on March 17-21 at the Moscone Center, San Francisco, CA. GDC was a huge hit in 2014 having around 24,000 professional video game developers participating to learn, inspire, and network for business benefits.
At the GDC 2014, Google announced a bunch of new game developer tools and in-game gifting codes. This may come as a big surprise to many including you, as you might have thought the search engine giant is going to launch some new features to upgrade the way paid content is handled in Google Play. For example, Google is going to add or modify features of gift codes and free-to-paid application alteration accessed by the starters.
As a matter of fact, Google did not make any such announcements; instead at GDC it introduced a series of new facilities for Google Play Games and such other well-known Google products. As the Google team has said, the new features are released to take the entire gaming experience to new heights.
Google Play Game Development application is going to add a number of fresh features to attract more developers in incorporating Google Play Games in the Android and iOS-based mobile devices. While Android got multiplayer last year, iOS users did not have that feature until this year’s announcement.
Innovative "Game Gifts" Feature
The new "game gifts" feature is regarded as the most user-friendly feature introduced this year. It will enable a gamer to send different items to their peers within a single game network. Suppose, you are playing an adventure game then you can choose to send another player a virtual object that can be used on a quest. Google Game Development apps also support gifts sending via regular player search. Google will also allow the players to send multi-player invitations to friends who are in their Google+ circles. Google also claimed of introducing 18 new game categories in the Google Play Store to make it easier for the gamers to select the type of games they are looking for.
Tweak of Multiplayer
Multiplayer games are getting improved to support cross-platform playing via iOS-based device using the Play Games Unity Plug-in and Play Games C++ SDK apps. Of course, the mobile game developers will need to add support for this kind of games.
Were we hoping for these new features?
To the enthusiasts of Google Play Games, let me say one thing, the game gifts are not tied in with an in-app billing, as billing for extra content as a per-app basis isn't very popular among the users. The game gifts are also not tied with regular store purchases. Now, it is not the kind of feature we were hoping for. However, maybe the new features are introduced to indicate more gifting-type stuffs are on the way. There will also be a new way to integrate digital advertisements for in-app purchases into the games.