I make it no secret that I am a trophy/achievement lady of the night. The satisfying pop of a hard-fought piece of meaningless braggadocious reward is enough to give me a thrill and it has more or less defined the type of gamer I am. Like them or not, achievements are here to stay and they provide joy to many people despite their inherent uselessness. However, the achievement system, particularly on Xbox, has been pretty rigid since the start of the Xbox 360 days. You had upwards of fifty achievements per game with a total tally of 1000 GamerScore. DLC also adds to the score and some games have more achievements than others. It’s the system we are all familiar with, but it all might change.
Speaking on a podcast, Mike Ybarra, corporate vice president of Xbox, had the following to say when the party discussed the achievement system:
Those are all small things that we can do to the system, and the team looks at them. They’re in our backlog of things that we want to get done, but there’s actually bigger, more bolder changes that we have in mind. Nothing that I can talk about now, but something that fundamentally changes the concept … we are working towards a bigger, more meaningful change about somebody’s gaming accomplishments in history, as a gamer on Xbox.
[W]e can do a lot more to reflect and let people show their gaming history and their status. Whether it’s somebody who only plays multiplayer in Halo 5 at a professional level, maybe they only have 2,000 Gamerscore, you want to be able to celebrate that person. You want people to be in the know. This person doesn’t play a lot of games, but they’re world top ten at Halo 5. All the way to people [with over a million gamerscore]. It’s that range that we really need to look at and celebrate … we’re going to go big in the area of letting people show off and represent their gaming history and the type of gamer that they are, far more than we do with Gamerscore.
Obviously, Ybarra is keeping things on the down low here, but what he says is extremely interesting. He focused on how people play a single game for a very long time, but do not get any recognition for it based on the achievement and Gamerscore system. It does make sense since people who log hundreds of hours into games barely have anything to show for it from an achievement perspective.
It’s interesting to think what they can potentially do with the achievement system since it is so integrated and almost antiquated at this stage. There was actually an attempt at changing achievements up at one point when they implemented ultra hard “challenges” that gave achievements but with no Gamerscore. The simplest thing I can think of right now is to potentially have a separate score completely outside of achievements and Gamerscore. Think of it like this, you can have your Gamerscore just how it is, but also a medal cabinet that has more challenging goals to reach like playing 500 hours in Overwatch or reaching the top 1 division in a multiplayer game.
There are many different directions that Xbox can take with their achievement system and it will be interesting to see where they go.
Source: Windows Central