Raptr, Social Network For Gamers

8 09 2008

Raptr (currently in Beta stage) is a new social networking website dedicated to gamers, and gamers only.

It aims to connect gamers together through the games they own and play. The interface is similar to Facebook. With a profile, friends, and inbox pages. And of course the almighty Games page, where you show off your own games to your friends.

Facebook already provides similar features to everyone through the use of applications. So, what’s new about Raptr? What makes it so unique?

Actually, Raptr has a few interesting and unique features up its sleeves:

First off, it is custom designed for gamers only. With that in mind, it has many features that are unique to gamers, and to gamers’ social habits. Like game recommendations, reviews, and user videos.

Raptr offers a client software that resides on your PC. This client searches automatically for games installed on your PC and adds them to your profile. It also logs your gaming habits for each and every game you own and play.

The client also provides instant updates about you to many other social network websites. For example, when you run a game on your PC, the Raptr client can automatically send an update to your Facebook and Twitter feeds. So your friends will be able to join you while you’re still playing for a multiplayer session. Or they may leave their comments on you, or the game you’re playing.

The most important feature offered by Raptr’s client IMHO is the ability to collect statistics from gamers all around the world about so many games, so that when you check a game’s Raptr page, it will show you how many players had played this game, when they played it, and for how long they did play. So, by comparing different stats with your friends on the network, Raptr is able to provide recommendations to players based on their friend’s stats and on your own gaming preferences. Which is an awesome feature!

And with a larger user base, Raptr will be able to even recommend some potential friends, based on similarities between you and them. Which would help to connect gamers together, thereby fulfilling the social networking purpose of the site.

Currently, Raptr is in Beta stage, so it’s still under development. And it still has some few quirks that needs to be sorted out. But nonetheless I think it has a great chance of becoming a major player in the social networking (or Web 2.0) world.

I tried it and installed the client, and I’m liking it so far. You can visit my Raptr profile page here: http://raptr.com/GFX

Pros.:

– Great concept.

– Streamlined website design (navigation, performance).

– The game’s statistics page.

Cons.:

– Game thumbnails are too large (more than 120 KBs). I assume it will be fixed in the Beta stage.

– The software client eats a large chunk of system memory (+30 MBs).

– A relatively small user base. Public Beta stage started only a week ago.

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