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Q&A: Make your game a social platform and retain players with Agora (spons.)

Gamasutra speaks with Sid Sharma, sr. director of developer relations and partner engineering at Agora, about how Agora's real-time engagement platform can turn your multiplayer online game into a social platform.

Online games have evolved into virtual spaces where socializing with one another is inextricably linked to the core gameplay.

But for many game developers who want to turn their online games into social platforms, whether on mobile, PC, console or elsewhere, developing the social aspects of a game requires expertise they may not have.

That's where Agora can help. Agora is the leading platform providing real-time engagement APIs to game developers so they can embed voice, video, livestreaming, text chat, and more into their games.

Revolutionize how gamers interact using voice, video, and live-streaming with Agora

"We basically allow developers to bridge the gap between the virtual and physical world through our platform," said Sid Sharma, sr. director of developer relations and partner engineering at Agora, in a recent interview (full Q&A embedded above).

Agora sets itself apart from other communications providers in the games space by putting social interaction at the center of all its offerings.

"We like to look at ourselves as real-time engagement providers," Sharma said. "What I mean by that is that everything we do at its core has a social interaction component to it, whether it's voice chat with your friends or watch parties or even just simple text chat, we try to make every part of the offering, and every part of our platform, as social as possible."

That means Agora's platform can provide extra layers to voice and video such as face filters or voice changers--features that provide developers with engagement and even monetization opportunities, all available for integration directly into a game.

"We really like to position our product strategy on how can we make developers' lives as simple and easy as possible, yet make the end user experience as enriching as it can be," said Sharma. "Game developers [are] finally realizing and adopting the fact that voice and video chat is more than a feature to enrich your application, but also to retain your users."

To learn more about how Agora can help, visit their website here.

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