Windows 8 Games Get Xbox Achievements

Dennis Faas's picture

There has been quite a lot of discussion in recent months about the integration of Microsoft's upcoming Windows 8 operating system (OS) with the company's current video game console (the Xbox 360), its next-gen gaming system (code-named "Durango") and its online gaming platform, Xbox Live.

There are even rumors that the next version of the Xbox (which is expected to get its first unveiling at the Electronic Entertainment Expo, or E3, next year) will use an operating system very similar to Windows 8.

Xbox Achievements Makes Games More Fun, Addictive

So it's no big surprise that Microsoft has announced some classic Windows-based games -- including Solitaire, Minesweeper, and Mahjong -- will get Xbox achievements when Windows 8 ships in October of this year. (Source:

Achievements have been a big part of the Xbox gaming experience since the Xbox 360 first shipped in late 2005.

Game developers give players an incentive to push on and complete difficult in-game challenges by offering them points for each level passed (though achievements have been offered for completing all kinds of objectives, from taking pictures of cars in Forza Motorsport to beating online opponents in NHL12).

It might sound like a simple idea, but Xbox Achievements -- which are essentially new-age high scores -- really do ratchet up the addictive nature of video games.

Classic Windows Games Add to Xbox Gamerscore

Now, fans of classic Windows games can participate in this incentive system.

According to reports, the Windows 8 version of Solitaire has three available achievements with 40 Gamerscore points; Minesweeper has four achievements worth 50 Gamerscore points; and Mahjong has three achievements worth 25 Gamerscore points. (Source:

Given that many popular Xbox 360 titles -- like Halo 3 and Gears of War 3 -- offer gamers the possibility of acquiring 1,000 or more Gamerscore points, the classic game totals seem a bit disappointing to many observers.

However, these newly offered achievements should make playing classic Windows games -- titles that seem a little weak compared to newer games with cutting-edge graphics and audio -- somewhat more entertaining than before.

It's also an indication that we can expect to hear more in the near future about integration between Windows 8 and the Xbox platform.

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