, a new game statistic tracking and social site, has just launched into a (semi-)public status. Players can use the free service to keep track of a range of quantifiable game performance details. We're not quite sure what to make of the service, since an Xbox Live Gamertag does nearly the same thing on a platform basis, albeit Xbox only. (We see overlap with Steam
too, for another heavy competitor.)
We'll give the site some hope, however, since it's signed a wide roster of EA, Activision, Capcom, and Sega for launch titles. Those games are Battlefield 2
(PC), Guitar Hero III
(Wii, 360, PS3), Lost Planet
(360), and Universe at War
(PC, 360). The site combines stats from all of those games into a single user profile. It'll also strip Gamertag data into its service.
GameStrata aims to bathe geeks in delicious data to keep them away from in-game -- and community-based -- competitors. Co-founder Barry Dorf takes exception to our classification, saying via email, "We do not see the space as having competitors, only partners.There are publishers that track stats and some that do not. We do not believe the publishers that are tracking stats are at the granular level we want them to be, or they want to be. Where do I rank in the first chorus during Sabotage in GH3
on Medium, or how many headshots did I make last week in Battlefield 2
, and where did it rank amongst those stats?"
Those details run deep, letting gamers graph performance over time -- say, kills with a certain weapon -- and compare it to friends. Players can also broadcast a syndicated news feed to update competitors with their latest achievements.
The site is free to gamers and will support itself through advertising, sponsorships, and publisher fees. As of this posting, limited numbers of players can register via the site, and those who get in can invite friends. At some point, a for-pay, high-end service may be offered to users, but that's not anticipated soon.
Also through email, CEO Lance Smith thinks that gamers will find the service, but GameStrata can also help game companies offer more than the typical achievements-only data plan. "Microsoft has built a great community around Xbox Live. We just want to take it to the next level and assist the publisher and/or platform guys in doing this."
GameStrata sounds interesting, but we're gamers first and lazy second. (Sometimes it's the other way around.) We wonder if the social site can draw an audience outside of the games. Overloading us with mounds of organizable data seems to be its best shot.