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Google Play Games update brings quests, game saves and game profiles

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Google Play Games is getting a slew of new features today that will help game developers increase player engagement, the company announced at its annual developers conference, Google I/O.

One of the key features being introduced is Game Profiles. Similar to the Apple's Game Center, the feature is a cross between Game Center itself, Xbox Live Achievements and PlayStation Trophies. The feature allows players to earn points and titles and to compare levels and accomplishments with friends. A Google representative told Polygon that Game Profiles will automatically represent a player's accomplishments based on gameplay. So when players achieve something within a game, they will earn experience points, and those points will help them earn vanity titles in a meta game that spans across all the games they play.

Google is also offering a new game service called Quests that allows developers to create online, time-based objectives in their games without having to launch an update for their app. Quests is a turn-key service that allows developers to create "live operation" events in games. "For example, if players participate in a 'Collect 50 green treasures this weekend' quest, game services will notify your game of who's succeeded after it receives 'green treasures' events from their gameplay," a Google spokesperson said. "You can reward successful players for completing a quest, and encourage them to engage more in your game."

Google is also introducing a game save feature that allows developers to store a player's game progress. Google's game network is also now part of the Android TV developer preview, which means players can now play their Android games on a TV with a game controller.

Android is currently the most popular operating system for mobile devices. More than one billion mobile devices use Google's operating system.

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