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Achievements in Games Boost Scores and Sales

by Rainier on Oct. 16, 2007 @ 3:43 p.m. PDT

A new study from Electronic Entertainment Design and Research (EEDAR), based on the Xbox 360 Achievement System, reveals that, in general, game titles that have a higher volume of Accomplishments correlate with both higher industry ratings and gross sales in North America.

The data also indicated that not all developers are utilizing these design options. In fact, 29% of all Accomplishments are Completion Accomplishments; one of the easiest to develop and integrate – leaving way for additional opportunities within the Accomplishment categories.

The new study, Accomplishments Unlocked 2007, conducted by EEDAR, the first company to provide a published classification system for Accomplishments, focused on the Xbox 360 Accomplishment system and the impact it has on Metacritic scores, sales and profitability. The results showed a strong connection between a game title’s diversity of Accomplishment types with that game’s profitability – pointing to the idea that the more diverse the Accomplishments available to the user, the more enjoyable the game, higher review scores, more units sold.

“Consumers want their games to include both variety and abundance of Accomplishments,” said Geoffrey Zatkin, COO, EEDAR. “Our research shows that incentives such as Accomplishments impact sales choices such as which game title to buy and which platform to buy it on; they also extend the replayability of a title.”

EEDAR's study showed game titles that incorporate online elements into their Accomplishments generate 50% more money than those that do not. It also found evidence that consumers are taking the time to review the available Accomplishments for a game before making purchasing decisions; game titles which keep their Accomplishments secret generate less revenue than those who expose them to players upfront.

Also, research indicated that game titles can generate up to 50% more revenue by including Accomplishments with Viral Marketing aspects (User Generated Content, Community or Customization Accomplishments).

Electronic Entertainment Design and Research (EEDAR) analyzed the 4,615 achievements incorporated in 124 retail and 63 downloadable game titles available for the Microsoft® Xbox 360™ during the period November 1, 2005 through June 1, 2007.

As part of the report, EEDAR also released the first published classification system for Accomplishments, identifying 16 unique types of accomplishments and examples of how to best implement them. In addition to the Accomplishment classification system, the report referenced many additional factors including genre, ESRB rating, gross sales in the United States, Metacritic Metascore, online dependency and multiplayer capability. The report identified highly informative success and revenue correlations between Accomplishment types and the analyzed factors.

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