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Discord launches Rich Presence SDK to help devs foster communities

November 9, 2017 | By Chris Kerr

Discord has pulled back the curtain on "Rich Presence," a new SDK that lets developers integrate with the popular chat app to make it easier for players to jump directly into game clients and play with their friends.

In action, the SDK will show Discord users what level or mission their friends are currently playing, allowing them to jump into spectate mode, join them in-game, share a party invite, or launch the game themselves -- all from within Discord. 

For devs, that means a new way to boost player engagement and build communities around specific games. The ability to add art and detailed information (like match duration and character selection) to users 'game playing status' screens also presents a number of viral exposure opportunities.

"Rich Presence removes the friction PC gamers often feel when joining game sessions with their friends," explained Jason Citron, CEO of Discord. "It gives players a clear at-a-glance understanding of what their friends are playing, how they are playing it, where they are at in the game, and a one click way to jump in and join."

A number of popular titles including Call of Duty: WWII, Payday II, and Divinity: Original Sin 2 are already making use of Rich Presence, with 21 studios and devs in total having signed up at this point. Those involved have praised the SDK's focus on seamless interaction and its "simple" integration process.

"Our development teams have worked closely with Discord to fully leverage the platform, which will further bring our PC community closer together and allow our players to more seamlessly interact with one another when playing," said Daniel Suarez, Activision’s VP of Production for Call of Duty."

According to Discord, integration should only take "a few days of work" using the open source Rich Presence SDK, which is compatible with C, C++, Unity, and Unreal. 

You can learn more about Rich Presence, and find out how to get started, over on the offical Discord website.

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