If you were to take a look at the Android gaming landscape, you’d see that thinks are looking pretty good right about now, there are some brilliant titles hitting the Play Store everyday and it’s pretty easy to argue that Android is becoming a great platform for gamers in general. There’s one thing though, that Android is lacking: a way to bring all of this together. Sure, there are some awesome games out there but, there’s no way to connect with your friends or generally play online with each other. Yes, there’s OpenFeint and others but, Apple’s Game Center has proved to be the most successful way to do things and we need something like that on Android.
TechCrunch recently discovered that veteran games developer, Noah Falstein, has listed a position at Google in his LinkedIn profile. Falstein has worked on some incredible titles over the years, ranging from Arcade games to console hits like Alan Wake. There aren’t many details on just what Falstein is going to be working on but, the listing was previously known as “Chief Game Designer at Android Play Studio” and The Verge has confirmed that he has indeed taken up a position there. It’s no secret that Google are pushing the Play Store to be a direct competitor with iTunes but, there’s been nothing on the gaming front.
Falstein has expressed a yearning to develop games that have more of a purpose than just pure entertainment, such as education. Google have been interested in education for a while now and they’ve been serving up Chromebooks to schools for what seems like forever. A lot of you will be thinking of Ingress here and you might be on the right lines, nobody can call Ingress “just another game” especially when you consider it’s one of the only titles that actually encourages you to leave the house.
On a personal note, I’m a big PC Gamer and I find it hard to get to grips with onscreen controls of mobile games, the idea of something that’s truly different like Ingress but on a more accessible level is pretty exciting, let’s hope we hear more of this at Google I/O.