Getting Those Achievements *Just* Right

Forget HD graphics. The one really new thing the 360 (and now the PS3) have brought to this generation of gaming is achievements. But how do you design them? What makes 'em tick?

Gamasutra asked a number of prominent developers, from Infinity Ward (Call of Duty) to EA (Skate) through Naughty Dog (Uncharted), just that question. And while all recognised the importance of implementing them correctly in a game (as this can increase both sales and time spent playing), they each had a few different ideas on implementing them.

The Skate guys believe you need to earn them. Naughty Dog reckon that they're there to recognise skilful events, while Infinity Ward (and this is the way I like my achievements) think that they need to be spread gently, and evenly, throughout the experience, because "It's really nice to get a pop-up every hour or two saying that you've done something cool".

Unlocking Achievements: Rewarding Skill With Player Incentives [Gamasutra]