The Amazon announcement post states that the goal of GameCircle is to "give developers great tools to quickly and easily reach new customers and keep them engaged. That’s why we’re creating easy-to-integrate APIs for features like leaderboards, achievements and sync."
Additionally, Amazon introduced an In-App Purchasing API in April 2012 which provides developers the ability to offer items for purchase within applications such as in-game currency, expansion packs and upgrades.
There are three key features provided by GameCircle:
- Achievements - Allow players to track earned trophies, treasures, badges and more without leaving the game.
- Leaderboards - Allow players to compare game scores and view their percentile ranking among competitors.
- Sync - Automatically saves a player's game progress to the cloud. Players can then resume a game where they left off when restoring a deleted game or when switching devices.
In order for developers to gain access to GameCircle, they must first apply for an invitation.
Developers must also apply for an account at the Amazon Mobile App Distribution Portal if they want
to create applications for the Kindle Fire or Amazon mobile client. Registering for an account gives developers access to the Amazon Mobile App SDK which "provides APIs, tools, and resources to leverage the features and services offered by Amazon."
To view Kindle Fire games that are now using GameCircle services, visit GameCircle Games at Amazon.com.
With the release of GameCircle, Kindle Fire now offers a more engaging social gaming experience for its users.