Xbox could be moving away from Achievements, embracing “gaming history” instead

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Since Microsoft introduced Xbox Live Achievements with the Xbox 360 more than 10 years ago, the gamification system has pretty much become a game within the game for many players. For some, it has even become a real life competition: Ray “Stallion83” Cox, long time owner of the world’s highest Xbox Gamerscore recently reclaimed his crown after losing it to Stephen “smernov” Rowe during his honeymoon (you can check the global Gamerscore Leaderboards on this site).

But does your Gamerscore really represent your true achievements as a gamer, including your dedication to playing your favorite titles? You could argue that the current Gamerscore system doesn’t necessarily reward the most passionate and skilled gamers out there, and it seems that Microsoft now agrees with that.

Mike Ybarra, Corporate Vice President of Gaming at Microsoft recently explained that the Xbox team is thinking about revamping Xbox Achievements to better reflect your gaming accomplishments, independently from your own Gamerscore level. This is what he said during the Xbox Two Podcast yesterday:

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.

We 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.

It’s not exactly clear what the Xbox team has in mind, but we guess it could mean making better use of your personal gaming data to surface interesting facts that are not already rewarded with Xbox Achievements. This is something that the company already tried to do in the past, and you may remind the recent Gamercrest website that gave you a lot of insights on your overall activity on Xbox Live. Hopefully, the Xbox team is working on something much more ambitious and interactive for the future.