Need bragging rights as a developer? Don’t have enough points and badges from Xbox Live? Well, Microsoft has the answer for you, Visual Studio Achievements!
In what seems to be an effort to rile developers up through ‘gamification’, Microsoft has announced a beta campaign called “Visual Studio Achievements”. By installing the Visual Studio Achievements Extension, you can unlock badges and earn points by simply writing code that you were already going to write! Analysis is done in the background each time you compile your project to test it. When you hit a certain objective, you unlock an achievement.
Next comes the leaderboard. All the points and badges you earn are tallied into a score and you’re stuck up onto an online leaderboard with all other registered developers who are taking part in the campaign. You can view challenging developer points, avatars and maybe eventually see what they are working on. It would be a great way to get developers to collaborate on ideas and projects.
If sharing your achievements with alike developers wasn’t enough, you can share badges through Twitter and Facebook. This can help you raise awareness for your application, and get recognition from your peers.
There are over 32 different badges you can unlock, from as easy as loading more extensions into Visual Studio, to as hard as having 50 different projects tied to a single solution.
There are fun badges, like the “Potty Mouth” achievements which rewards you for using 5 different curse words in a project, or the “Time for an Upgrade” badge that is unlocked if your project takes over 10 minutes to compile. It’s a simple way to add a level of fun to programming and give developers a way to show off their skills.