At GDC, Google announced a few new game-focused tools for developers that should make launching, promoting, and monetizing titles easier. There's now a full blog post on the changes, and they look like a big deal for developers, especially those who consider themselves "indie."

Google is launching a new collection in the Play Store that it will promote via banners and links called the Indie Corner. As the name suggests, it's a list of games created by indie devs. You can check it out right now on the Play Store; although there aren't very many games listed yet. Developers will also have access to a new video recording API that makes it easier for players to record gameplay and share it to YouTube in a few taps.


You might recall Google's early testing of streamed apps a few weeks back. Well, this feature will be made available to Game developers too as "search trial run ads." Developers will be able to let users play a little of the game streamed to their devices as a way to encourage downloads. In-game ads will also soon support portrait video, which will at least be less annoying than video ads that are playing the wrong way on your screen. Support for AdMob is improved as well.


Developers who have in-app currency will also find it's much easier to manage those parameters. This won't matter much to players, but developers will be able to change what things cost in the game without uploading new APKs. The dev console will simply list prices for virtual goods in coins, gems, chickens, or whatever else the game uses as fake money. A few clicks, and all players will get new prices. This might save you from a few unnecessary updates, but it's mostly about reducing headaches for developers.