Earlier this month, we introduced our newest community event. It's called TA Playlist and it's an entirely new way to jump in and be a part of TrueAchievements. Every month we'll play through a game, selected by a community vote, and together we'll share our thoughts and video highlights of us in action. Did you love it? Did you hate it? What story moments moved you? What of its gameplay did you find innovative? No matter your experience, the TA Playlist is all about sharing a game with the community. Each month will be capped off by a podcast hosted by an entirely new crew featuring Mark, Will and myself.
The first vote was held and the community cast over 3,500 votes to select the first addition to the Playlist, Alan Wake. With the game selected, that leaves only one little detail left open — how do you participate? That's where the TA Playlist Hub comes in.
The hub will be the home for all things TA Playlist related. You can find it under the community tab running atop the site, or right here. The home page will show the latest news so you can easily follow along. You can also choose to get notifications for Playlist-related news by clicking on the button for news updates. And, of course, it's where you'll access all the ways to participate. Plus, in the near future we'll have a countdown timer for the end of the month and you'll be able to vote for the next month's game when there's a poll live.
First there's the TA Playlist forums. We'll have threads for general discussion of the month's game and spoiler-free discussion if that's your cup of tea. For each game, we'll also be making threads asking specific questions we hope to get your thoughts on once you've played through the game. These questions will be centerpieces in the Podcast and we'll definitely be highlighting the posts that stir the discussion. Even if you only want to share your thoughts and move on, we're happy to have them but we hope you'll stay to defend them and see what everyone else has to say. The Playlist is first and foremost about sharing the experience, and the forums will be the best place to discuss the game with everyone.
You'll also share your experiences by submitting game clips. Right now, you can only view submitted game clips for the game (you submit by clicking the button under one of your clips) but in the coming weeks this section will evolve into a major part of the Playlist experience.
These clips can come from any time and should highlight your favorite moments in the month's game. You'll record the clips on your Xbox One and then submit the best of them through the Hub. From there you can browse all the submitted clips and give a thumbs up to your favorites. The monthly podcast will come in video form on YouTube and we'll be using as many clips from the community as we can in the video, so now's your chance to get your clips onto the front page!
Stats and Leaderboards
While the Playlist is about sharing the experience first and foremost, we know many of you are here for the stats and it wouldn't be TrueAchievements without raining them down upon you. Right now, the stats are pretty basic and the leaderboards aren't yet created, but in the coming weeks we've got some nice treats in store.
The stats will come in two flavors: the My Stats page and the Leaderboards. In My Stats, you'll see your personal stats for the current game as well as the stats from your friends. These stats range from game clips submitted to completion percentage to overall TA score. In a future update, we'll also add support for overall stats so if you're participating every month everyone will know it and you can chase those Playlist achievements.
The leaderboards will let you see where your stats stand among the community. There are leaderboards for nearly everything we track in the hub. There's overall TA score and Gamerscore, of course, as well as completion percentage. There's also a unique leaderboard that tracks your participation across every month. All you've got to do is score achievements, submit a game clip, or even just chat in the forums. If you're participating, we'll make sure you get tracked. The other leaderboards will allow you to catch up on missed months later, but this one will show off who's participating regularly.
We've got more updates in the future, including some in April to make sure the experience is the best it can be. If you have any suggestions for making Playlist better, let one of us from the podcast know. We'll read all feedback! Stay tuned for more information. We'll let you updated.
Frequently Asked Questions
I know you've got questions so I'll try to answer them all here. If I miss any, feel free to ask below and I'll get them answered and added to the FAQs. If you want to know how something works, this is how you'll find out.
When does the event start? When does it end?
The TA Playlist begins a new game on the first of every month as soon as the clock strikes midnight anywhere in the world. It ends once the month ends for everyone. You can see how much time is left on the countdown timer in the hub.
Do I need to register?
No. You need only participate to get tracked.
How do I participate?
You participate by playing the game, sharing your thoughts in the forums, and uploading game clips. We hope you'll do all of it — even replay the game if it's not fresh on your mind — but any way you choose to participate is encouraged.
What's the podcast?
The Playlist podcast features three new hosts and is entirely unrelated to the main TA Podcast. The main hosts will be Mark, Will and Kevin. We may of course have guest hosts in the future. We'll talk about the game, the achievements, and share the most insightful, interesting, or often humorous feedback from the community. We'll also release the same podcast as background to a YouTube video featuring our favorite clips from those submitted during the month.
How are games chosen?
The podcast hosts will curate a list of four games each month on which the community as a whole can vote. These games can be themed (such as all indie games or sequels) or they may simply be a list of games we think you'd all like to play. The only hard rule is that the game must be playable on Xbox One, which means if a 360 game is not backwards compatible it won't be chosen.
Can new releases be chosen?
New releases are not completely off the table. For instance, we might have a poll featuring the biggest titles from the holiday season in December. But generally, we want to make sure we select games everyone has had a chance to purchase and that are affordable just in case you haven't quite yet. New releases will be very rare.
Will you pick games with multiplayer?
Yes. However, any game we pick will almost always have a strong single-player component. Never say never, but we do not currently have any plans to select a multiplayer-centric game such as Overwatch.
If a game loses a vote, will it come back next month?
It may or may not be the following month, but popular games that didn't quite make the cut are definitely eligible to come back if we think it's appropriate for an upcoming vote. Hope is not lost!
When does voting begin and end? How do I vote?
The vote will go live on the 15th of every month and will last for one week. Each poll will have a news article and will be visible in the forums.
When do the podcast and video come out?
We plan to record as close to the end of every month that we can, with the show going up very soon thereafter. Expect it right before the calendar turns to the new month with the next Playlist game.
Can I still participate after the podcast comes out in a month?
Of course! The forums will always be there, and like the rest of TA, we expect they'll be quite active.
Can I get notifications for news items related to the Playlist?
Yes. You can do so by viewing articles with the TA Playlist news tag and clicking the subscribe button on the right side.
When will the hub be fully updated?
It's being worked on all the time and we'll update it as we go with fresh ideas, valuable feedback from the community, and new features when applicable.
What if I've already played this month's game?
You can still participate by discussing in the forums or submitting game clips. Leaderboards for TA score and the like will automatically track your previous progress.
Can I play games from previous Playlist months and get credit on the leaderboards?
Only the Playlist participation leaderboard is locked in each month. For any other leaderboard, you can play at a later point and still catch up on the leaderboards. So if you don't quite have enough time to get a game completed or plan to buy the DLC later, you'll be able to get credit for that.
Is DLC included?
That depends on your site settings. For discussion's sake, we will usually leave it up to the participating community as a whole to include DLC or not. For example, Alan Wake's two DLC episodes are now free and closely linked to the main story, so it's a good discussion to have.
What version of a game is tracked?
This is done on an individual basis. For games with multiple versions (be it region, platform, remaster/definitive edition, or anything else), the version of the game tracked will be the one for which you have the highest TA score.
If I play both versions will the TA score count twice?
Not at this time. Sorry!
Does a game clip need to be recorded during the month to be submitted?
Nope, if you have an older clip you think is worth sharing, send it to the hub!
If you have any more questions, post them below and we'll do our best to get them answered. Don't forget that the TA Playlist begins tomorrow with Alan Wake. You can get info on where to get the game cheapest in the poll winner story (don't forget to check the comments for more deals) and make sure you download all the DLC, which is currently free on the Xbox marketplace for all.
We hope tyou'll join us for our first ever TA Playlist!