Xbox is changing the rules around Achievements and Gamerscore. According to a new report, Xbox game certification rules have new requirements that prevent games from being published if all or most achievements can be unlocked without doing anything.
Sources talking to TrueAchievements have noted a flood of new games where players can unlock all achievements and earn 1,000 Gamerscore after running the game for a few minutes. The most terrifying example came from Aabs Animals, a game where you can only move the camera around a 3D model of a kitten. You don’t even have to turn the camera around to unlock the full 1,000 Gamerscore for this game. All you have to do is leave the camera on for 16 minutes.
Gamerscore usually means nothing in a material sense. It’s just a number displayed under your gamertag to give your friends bragging rights. However, in some cases, Gamerscores are linked to Xbox Game Pass quests that allow you to earn Microsoft Rewards, which can be exchanged for real-world items.
Sources say an update was made on May 1st to change the rules surrounding Achievements and Gamerscore in games Xbox publishes. Rule XR-055 has been updated to require “All achievements represent exhaustive exploration or engagement with game content.” We’ve also added three new criteria to ban publishing if a game satisfies any of these.
- All achievements can be unlocked within minutes of starting the game.
- Achievements do not represent exhaustive exploration or engagement with game content.
- Achievements can be unlocked without (or minimal) user input if not required as part of the core gameplay loop.
It is speculated that these rules were created as a result of Aabs Animals getting attention from ID@Xbox. Chris Chat back in February. The game is still available for download, but it looks like it will be disqualified under the first and third rules. TrueAchievements also noted that several similar games have been released recently, although they were able to get verified before the new rules went into effect on May 1st.
In other Xbox news, Starfield Direct will be hitting theaters near you. Bethesda’s upcoming sci-fi RPG is getting a dedicated presentation as part of next month’s Xbox Games Showcase, and it looks like Xbox wants to build theaters with die-hard gamers who don’t even have to pay an entrance fee or anything. A bag of popcorn. Xbox will reportedly cover ticket prices and even offer $10 for snacks. All you have to do is register for the Xbox Fanfest by May 31st and your tickets will be emailed to you on June 1st. It’s unlikely that this will be a global event, but North Americans should probably be informed. A free bag of popcorn.
Next: Lord of the Rings games are too focused on Mordor