Android 12 introduces a Game Dashboard that is currently exclusive to Pixel 6 and 6 Pro. In addition to providing useful tools, Google encourages developers to take advantage of the Game Mode API. Google Play now shows games that are “optimized for Pixel 6.”
Update 29/1/22: In the intervening months, Google has added three games (listed at the end of the table below). This Play Store list still appears only on Pixel 6, though Game Dashboard is currently available for all Google phones running Android 12.
Original 14/11/21: At the top of the Play Store’s Games tab, users see an “Optimized for Pixel 6” carousel with the “Increase performance or save power” section. This is with reference to the Game Mode API, which developers can support to let users set whether they want a title to prioritize gameplay for longer battery life or maximum frame rates.
As people in our comments have observed, Game Mode support is the only optimization needed to be listed on the Play Store. In our test, we looked at the conditions Scrabble Go (casual game) and FIFA Soccer (more intense title).
End users can enable “Game Dashboard” from System Preferences> Apps> (under General) Game Preferences. When you open a compatible title, you get a liquid bubble that opens the overlay. In compatible games, the “Optimization” tile – which is under the line of screen capture, recording, FPS counter and DND shortcuts and next to YouTube Live streaming – presents three modes:
- Performance: Maximizes frame rate
- Standard: Uses the game’s default settings
- Battery saver: Extends battery life
Currently, Game Dashboard is only live on Pixel 6 and 6 Pro. It does not appear on other Pixel phones running Android 12. Back in July, Google said the Game Mode API would be available on “select” Android 12 devices later this year, and that Samsung is already a partner in the effort, ” with more OEMs on the way. “
The full Google Play list of Game Mode-optimized titles for Pixel 6 is below:
More about Pixel 6:
Updated with clarified heading
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