Okay, so the title makes it sounds totally redundant, but it’s also the most accurate way to describe Raptr, a service that lets you track your gaming and earn rewards. The premise is pretty simple, create a profile, enter your gamer IDs for your various platforms, find friends and get to gaming. By linking your Xboxlive, PSN or Steam IDs the service is able to automatically track how long you play what games and what achievements you get. You can also track this info manually online. With the desktop app, hours logged in PC games not played on Steam are tracked automatically.
And it’s not just for “hardcore” gamers. Facebook and mobile game hours are tracked as well, meaning your Raptr profile represents the full image of you as a gamer. Not just what you play on Xbox or Playstation. It includes everything in one place, with its own ranking system and a chance to earn rewards by playing certain games on certain days or earning certain achievements in certain games. It also ranks you against your friends and the full Raptr community, positioning itself as the ultimate arbiter of gamer bragging rights.
So what’s the point behind all this, besides bragging rights and a chance at gamer SWAG? Sure, comparing with your friends will help encourage you to log hours gaming, but there’s an even juicier byproduct of all this tracking: data. Data that can be compiled into reports and sold back to the industry or to publications that cover the industry. Not that that’s necessarily a bad thing, most of the data they compile is fascinating (just take a look at this Ars Technica article on game length), but it’s still important to keep in mind.