How Achievements Are Changing For Xbox One

Achievements are one of the defining elements of the Xbox experience. Naturally, Microsoft will include them in the Xbox One. But they're not going to work like you remembered them, not exactly. There's more to them now.

The way it worked before was, a developer set up some sort of challenge. If you met it, you heard the iconic achievement unlocked! sound, and your Gamerscore would increase. That's still going to happen with the Xbox One, although you can expect more things to go along with that basic experience.

From a Microsoft press release that mentions achievements on the Xbox One:

Expanded achievements. A new and expanded achievements system captures video of your epic moments, continues to grow a game's achievements over time, and rewards you in new ways, and your Gamerscore carries over from your Xbox 360.

A fact sheet for the One says something similar, albeit in more nebulous terms:

Allows for new achievements powered by the cloud and offers more ways to earn, more frequent updates and the ability to share wins with friends. An expanded achievements system captures videos of gameplay and continues to grow achievements over time, and Gamerscores carry over from Xbox 360.

Finally, from the official website:

Neat. The fact that you can record the events leading up to unlocking achievements using the console's new DVR feature will be incredibly handy for those of us who like uploading walkthroughs on YouTube, I imagine.

I'm still left with some questions though -- how will it know when to start capturing an achievement-in-progress? How does being powered by the cloud give me "more ways to earn" achievements? What does growing an achievement over time look like in practice? How will the achievement-loving community change when the way you earned an achievement is tracked?

Nonetheless, overall, these changes sound exciting. I'd like to see them in practice, although already I look forward to being able to share awesome achievement moments with friends (especially if that means sharing video). That feature makes the whole achievements thing feel like more than just a number, you know?


Comments

    Dynamically adding new achievements is going to mega-piss off folks who cherish their 1000G games :P

    Thankfully, with the exception of Dark Souls, I ain't one of those people.

      They already broke that with DLC - once something new is added the game is no longer marked as "complete". As a completionist, I prefer the PS3's platinum approach because that recognition never goes away. But as a completionist and a mainly Xbox gamer, they've done me a favour. They've made it so I've gone from caring about 1000G, to not caring at all (OK, not caring as much as I used to).

        That was "fixed" a while ago. If DLC comes out and you don't buy it, it still counts as complete for you

          Really? I didn't want to hear that. My obsession!

    how will it know when to start capturing an achievement-in-progress?
    Record the last X minutes of video, then associate them with the achievement after it unlocks?

      Maybe it's always recording? But then it deletes footage that's, say, 5 minutes or so old if you haven't gotten an achievement or started recording on your own.

      Seems the only logical way to do it. But constant recording? I wonder what kind of resource drain that'll be.

        The PS4 is doing this too for their share functionality. Can't imagine it's a major drama.

        Last edited 22/05/13 1:11 pm

          They have a dedicated processor to do this though. MS didn't mention whether it was a software or hardware implementation. It'll be a real resource drain if its a software implementation.

        It would be pretty easy to program in a trigger when say a user does something and then if they don't get the achievement, Xbox will just delete the video that was recorded when it was triggered.

          Easy to program? You obviously haven't dealt with the buggy garbage that comes with achievements. =P

          I'm really hoping that developers don't have to do anything extra to make the expanded achievements work. I think it'd lead to an increase in those really lazy achievement lists.

          Last edited 22/05/13 6:33 pm

    So I transfer my gamerscore over from my 360 to the One...but wait, I keep my 360 because I love my old games....what of my gamerscore now? Does it remain? Can I still log in? how will this impact accounts?? We need answers!!

      I'd assume you'd be logging in with the same account, so the new Gamerscore will display on your old Xbox too

      I imagine there will be the one Live account and achievement records from both consoles will be stored on it.
      Hopefully the lack of backwards compatibility doesn't extend to achievements, otherwise there'll be a lot of people having to choose between an e-peen circumcision or castration.

    I just want them to get rid of online achievements. Ones like "Win 100 Races/Matches Over XBox Live". After the servers are shut down these achievements become unobtainable, and you can't 100% complete the achievements.

    The Steam Box is looking better and better all the time.

      I have always thought that online and offline trophies/achievements should be separate, not that I care that much, just my $0.02.

    More bullshit developers will be forced deal with.

    Achievement Unlocked:
    Caught walking through the lounge room naked by the always on Kinect Camera

      Which now sends everything you do to THE CLOUD.

      I bet theirs some shady dev just itching to stitch together footage of people playing the new kinect games naked. A montage if you will.

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