For better or worse, Xbox Achievements changed the way we think about gaming when it was introduced with the Xbox 360. These seemingly minor tasks matter a lot to many gamers and allow you to showcase your skills to the world.
What are Xbox Achievements, how do you earn them, and what are they for? We will answer all your questions and more as we explore them.
Xbox Achievement Basics
Xbox Achievements are a variety of goals included with almost every Xbox game, including Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and Xbox 360 games. They identify specific tasks you must complete to unlock them.
After you complete an achievement, you get Gamerscore points. You’ll get as little as 5 Gamerscore for easy achievements, or a few hundred for harder challenges. Most games include 1000 player points in the base game.
Your Gamerscore appears next to your gamertag on the Xbox Live platform and gives other players an idea of how many achievements you’ve earned. However, achievements are completely optional. You don’t have to worry about them to complete the game as they count towards the Xbox level and have no in-game effect.
Once you unlock them all, you won’t get anything special other than the satisfaction of earning 1000 player points for this game. So getting achievements is really just for your own enjoyment and bragging rights.
As you may know, achievements are not exclusive to Xbox. The PlayStation has an almost identical feature, trophies, and Steam has its own achievement system. For cross-platform games, the achievements are identical.
Xbox Achievement Examples
It is up to the game developer to decide how many achievements will be included in the game. Some games have as few as 10 or 12, while others can have up to 50 or more. Sometimes an important DLC allows you to add additional achievements to the title.
Also, the types of achievements offered may vary from game to game. In some games, you only need to complete the main story in order to get achievements, and nothing else needs to be done. Others have achievements that require you to fully explore the game, beat it multiple times, or complete difficult challenges.
Here are some examples of recent gaming successes to give you an idea of what they look like in general:
- Deadshot (Battlefield 2042): Perform 20 headshots in a single turn.
- Rookies (FIFA 22): Play a season with a new club.
- Put on a Show (Forza Horizon 5): Win all showcase events.
Obviously, in order to succeed, you must play in a variety of ways. Sometimes achievements are related to unlocking secrets in the game, while other times they require you to perform the same action multiple times throughout the game. Some games award an achievement for clearing each stage, while others limit success more complex tasks.
If you enjoy a particular game, it can be fun to try and earn all of its achievements. But if you just want to increase your Gamerscore quickly, there are plenty of games that make it easy to earn Gamerscore.
Viewing Your Achievements on Xbox
Your Xbox console will show a quick popup when you get an achievement. If you have achieved a rare achievement that few other players have achieved, you will also hear a special sound and see a diamond icon. When this prompt appears, press the Xbox button to go directly to the information page for this achievement. (If this notification bothers you, our Xbox tips guide shows you how to adjust the location and duration of the notification.)
At any other time, you can easily view the achievements you’ve earned on Xbox. It also lets you see how many other players have achieved certain achievements, giving you an idea of their difficulty level.
To view your achievements, press the Xbox button to open the Guide, then use LB and RB to navigate to Game Activity (with a controller icon). Select “All Achievements” to see a list of your games and the progress of the achievements in each game.
Select a game to see a list of achievements you’ve already earned, as well as information about your ranking compared to friends in that game. Each achievement shows when you unlocked it, how much it’s worth to Gamerscore, and what percentage of players got it.
If you see a diamond icon next to an achievement, it means that it is rare because only a small percentage of players have earned it. And for achievements you haven’t unlocked yet, some games have a progress bar. This allows you to track your progress towards achievements such as Get 1000 Cumulative Kills.
If you wish, you can view your achievements on your computer or mobile device. On Windows, download the Xbox app for PC, then click your profile icon in the top bar and select View Profile. From there, scroll down to Achievements to see what you’ve earned.
You can also view your achievements in the Profile tab of the Xbox app for Android or iPhone.
Using the Xbox Achievement Tracker
If you want to get serious about hunting for achievements, you should use the Xbox Achievement Tracker. This allows you to track the progress of your achievements as you play. To use it, start by launching the game.
Then press the Xbox button to open the Guide and scroll down again to the Game Activity tab. Select achievements to view them for the current game, then turn the achievement counter to.
Next, you need to configure the available options. Select the “Speed” option to change settings, including the location of the tracker on the screen. You can track from one to five hits at a time and adjust the transparency so that the bar doesn’t interfere with your gameplay. Hit Done and you’ll now have a handy on-screen tracker.
By default, the tracker will display the achievements you are closest to. If you’d rather prioritize different achievements, select Progress and select other criteria. You can also toggle the lock button to switch between unearned achievements and earned achievements.
To make it easier to keep track of specific achievements, you can set some of them as favorites. To do this, highlight an achievement in the list and press X to add it to your favorites, which will move it to the top of the list.
Using Achievement Guides
When you decide to earn all the achievements in the game, you will be able to work more efficiently by checking out the achievement guide. The Xbox Achievements site is a great resource for this. Find the game and you can view the achievement guide. Achievements This list allows you to view the title’s achievements and their meaning.
Most titles also have an achievement guide on their page, which is very handy. In these guides, other achievement hunters describe what you need to do to get all the achievements in the game.
The overview provides some important information at a glance:
- Estimated difficulty rates the difficulty of completing all achievements on a scale of 1 to 10. Other players vote to decide.
- Online achievements require playing in multiplayer mode, so if the game’s multiplayer mode is dead, they will be difficult to earn.
- Check the Estimated Time and Minimum Plays to see how much investment is needed to get all the achievements.
- Missable Achievements alert you to anything you might miss forever.
- Does difficulty affect achievements? lets you know if you need to play on a certain difficulty in order to get certain achievements.
Below we can see an example preview of Cuphead:
After the review, most of the authors give general tips for mastering the game, then you will see a roadmap that serves as a basic set of steps needed to achieve everything. For example, the guide might recommend beating the game on Hard difficulty to get achievements related to the difficulty level, and then playing again on Easy difficulty to get collectibles.
Finally, you will see information about each achievement. Depending on the game, this could include information such as best times to get, traps to avoid, etc. Some achievements will be marked as story-related because you’ll get them by playing normally while how others can be obtained by working on another achievement.
Xbox Achievements and Microsoft Awards
The last important piece of information about achievements is that you can sometimes use them to earn rewards. The Microsoft Rewards program allows you to earn points by purchasing digital games, completing surveys, and completing time-limited tasks. Sometimes these tasks involve earning a certain number of Gamerscore points.
You won’t earn a lot of money just by accumulating Xbox Achievements, but you can also follow the challenges if you plan on earning achievements anyway.
Ready to earn achievements on Xbox?
You’re no longer new to Xbox Achievements! Now you know how to earn achievements, where to find guides for maximum performance, and even how to track and compare achievements with friends. It’s time to start climbing to increase your Gamerscore.
However, it is important to remember that achievements are not everything in the game. If you don’t want to worry about a particular achievement, skip it. After all, they are only fake hotspots on the Internet. Your enjoyment of the game is much more important than completing a to-do list just for fun.