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Playstation 3 Trophies and Xbox 360 Achievements
When comparing the PlayStation 3 Trophies and Xbox 360 Achievement systems, each are only successful if they promote competitiveness between players. Unfortunately, the PlayStation 3 Trophies system fails to do this to the extent that the Xbox 360 Achievements does. In this article, we will explore why.
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Numerical Score Vs. Levels
The Xbox Gamerscore system is point-based. In other words, each Achievement is worth a certain amount of points. Your Gamerscore, therefore, is calculated by adding all of the Achievement points together. The PlayStation 3 Trophies, on the other hand, are calculated by percent. It is well known that numerical scoring systems are generally motivating to people because they are easy to compare. I think that having a figure attached to your profile, as opposed to a level, is much more satisfying. Most will probably disagree on this - but I personally prefer a numerical ranking system. I feel it encourages competitiveness more than the leveling systems which are so commonly found in the gaming world. Also, there is the obvious ego boost of seeing a four-digit figure that you have personally accumulated as opposed to a two- or three- digit level.
Since the dawn of the gaming age, scores have been calculated numerically - something all gamers relate to almost on a primitive level. High scores are good! A percentage-based system is somewhat satisfying, but it is just not the same.
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An Even Playing Field
Achievements have been a part of every single Xbox 360 game since its launch back in 2005 - unlike the PS3 Trophy System, which was introduced by Sony after the PlayStation 3 was released. This makes a huge difference for competitive gamers. The Xbox 360 playing field is even, with Achievements available on every game. So, comparing yourself to someone else is always a fair comparison. If you are comparing yourself to someone using the PlayStation 3 Trophies system, it will not be as fair. Either one of the players may have played games which do not have Trophies. If another player has more Trophies than you do, it could mean that they just simply own more Trophy-enabled games than you do. It does not necessarily mean they are a more dedicated gamer.
Then there is the even more annoying game patches. Basically, because Trophies weren't introduced from the beginning, there are sometimes patches for games to introduce Trophies to them. This means that if you've already completed a game, but then receive a Trophy patch for it, you must complete it again in order to unlock the Trophies.
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There certainly are many different features of the PlayStation 3 which I happen to prefer over those of the Xbox 360. The Trophy system, however, is just not one of them.