Achievements sell more games and get better reviews

xbox achievementsA new study by Electronic Entertainment Design and Research (EEDAR) on the Xbox 360 achievement system has concluded that games with a larger amount of achievement awards end up with higher overall review scores on Metacritic along with higher sales numbers in the United States.

The study, dubbed "Accomplishments Unlocked 2007", also revealed that quantity isn’t the only factor in a games critical and retail success; a more diverse set of accomplishments were also strongly connected with the title’s profitability, effectively leading to a higher replayability factor than just simple "Completion Accomplishments" can achieve.

Along with amount and diversity within achievements, games with online-based achievements generated a whopping 50% more revenue than those who did not along with games that offered viral marketing aspects within achievements (such as Community and Customization requirements).

Game buyers are also doing their homework; people are going online to review lists of available achievements prior to purchasing and games with secret or hidden achievements were shown to have less retail success than those that were upfront.

Those questioning the validity of the study, at least in scientific terms, can rest easy. EEDAR analyzed 4,615 achievements from 124 retail games and even included 63 downloadable games in the mix. Through their analysis and study, EEDAR also developed the first published classification system for accomplishments, breaking them up into 16 unique types.

Some of the things EEDAR referenced in their study was gross sales in the US, Metacritic scores, genre, online dependency, ESRB rating, genre, and multiplayer capabilities.

Personally I think the study simply proves something we all know: we love our achievements and it really does factor into our game buying mindset. There will occasionally be a game that stands out from the norm–Bioshock being one, considering it doesn’t offer any online content.

This could also be one of the reasons why The Orange Box is quickly becoming a hot seller with its 99 achievements spread out over 5 games (and 3 genres) blowing every other game out of the water when it comes to sheer amount and diversity in Achievements, and probably the reason why I’m playing Half-Life 2 all over again.


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Author: GamerNode Staff View all posts by

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