April 29th is a pretty ginormous and fantasmical day for gamers, what with the release of the much anticipated Grand Theft Auto IV (you may have heard of it). But now those waiting can add another metaphorical flower to their bonnet with today's declaration of developer Rockstar's new online project, Rockstar Social Club, which launches on the same day as GTA IV.
What is the Social Club? Well, it works like Bungie.net does for the Halo series. It's a website that offers GTA IV players around the world the chance to check stats from their games and how they compare to others around the world and it's open to anyone with either an Xbox Live Gamertag or a PlayStation Network ID.
Some of the specialties offered are the LCPD Police Blotter, which keeps track of the most commonly used items, the most crime-filled areas in town and so on. For personal achievements, they offer the Story Gang, which keeps an eye on players as they travel through the game's main story, tracks how long they take to complete it and rank who has finished it first (thus letting friends know who has the most free time).
On top of that story-centric list, the Social Club will also feature the 100% Club, which will let the world know who's dedicated enough to finish the game completely. The first 10 people (let's call them "fanatics") to do so will be given a real, commemorative "key to the city" to let the others be aware of their triumph. There will also be a Hall of Fame to illustrate who have gotten more specific feats and who won special Social Club competitions.
A more specific inventory is the Liberty City Marathon, which will track all the player's physical accomplishments, such as bullets fired, miles walked/swam/driven and similar deeds.
Rockstar promises that this is just the beginning, as they plan to use the Social Club to introduce many new competitions and challenges for players for months to come. They also want you to know that the Social Club isn't just for GTA IV, but for more Rockstar games to come.
Players can start registering at this currently empty site on April 15th.
Article supplied by Games Radar.