Google Play Games is breaking up with Google+. The next time you sign up to play a game on your Android phone or tablet, you'll be asked to create a Gamer ID. This universal ID will give you a unique persona that's tied to every game you play: you'll choose an avatar image, and be automatically signed in whenever you start up a new game.
If you've played a video game on just about every other platform, including iOS, video game consoles, or on the PC care of Steam, you're likely familiar with the concept of a Gamer ID -- it's great to see Google getting on board here. But more importantly, this is yet another nail in the coffin of for Google+ integration.
Signing into games that are integrated into Google Play has been something of hassle for me, given how many games I wade through every month while picking out a few favorites to share. Right now, you need to sign in to Google+ and give or deny permissions with every new Google Play game you download. With a unique Gamer ID that's automatically active with every game I play, I no longer need to worry about annoying all of the folks in my Google+ circles with all of my gaming activity. Better still, you can decide whether or not to tie your Gamer ID to your real name or keep things private -- a nice touch for people who just want to play without hassle.
The new sign-in process will be rolling out over the next few weeks. If you're playing a game that uses Google's Play Games network for the first time, you'll be prompted to create your ID, so keep an eye out on your favorites so you can snag your personal persona.