How I Learned to Love Achievement Hunting – A Newb’s Perspective
Hey Dtoid! It’s Coil_Whine again. Everyone seems to be posting GOTY lists, but I think that’s boring as shit so I won’t do one of those lists just to spare all of you the monotony. I wanted to have this blog out yesterday… or Saturday, Friday… or Thursday, but I wanted to experience 100%ing Just Cause 3 and getting that fabled 47/47 achievement count. All of them! Well, until the DLC, but I succumbed to the Gaming Industry’s evils and preordered that. KAZ, I’M ALREADY A DEMON.
I well remember getting an Xbox 360 for Christmas in 2007. Well, the first one kept freezing and had a RROD (Red Ring of Death) out of the box. Luckily we replaced it with a Halo 3 Edition which has worked fine ever since.
Gee, I was only eight years old back then, but it made a huge impression on me in terms of my interests. It had a bunch of features unparalleled at its price point at the time – it could play in HD, it had online multiplayer with Xbox Live Gold, it had a spacious Hard Drive at the time (20GB). Other features like downloadable content and themes, DVD playback and wireless controller support, all in one robust console! Most of all, the innovation that still stuck with me today, had to be Achievements. I didn’t realize it at the time, but achievements would change my life.
Fast forward a few years to January 2010, and I finally created my own Xbox Live Account. One problem however, I had a bunch of games, but no will to unlock every achievement. I would play Alan Wake and only get 43% of achievements, or Assassin’s Creed 1 and only get 52% of achievements. It wasn’t a concern of mine that much, and actually going back through the game and trying different strategies was too time consuming.
No, I went all attention-deficit disorder and wanted to speed through games quickly. At the time, I believed that getting all achievements was a near-impossible task. It took too much time, and also at the time I didn’t have a computer or phone at the ready to hunt down every last collectible. I thought at the time, that completing a game’s campaign was rewarding enough. For years I thought that. But I was terribly wrong… :)
A while later, I created my Steam profile in September of 2011. Barely used it until 2012, however.
Fast forward (again) to October of 2011. The PS3 got hacked, so Sony decided to be generous and drop the price to $300. I bought the InFAMOUS 2 bundle (with my own money nonetheless) and at 12 I joined the Playstation Nation. Oddly enough, one of the first games I bought were the first 2 Uncharted games. Somehow Uncharted Drake’s Fortune didn’t want to unlock trophies, and it was the 2nd game I played on PS3 (the first being LBP2.). So yeah, getting 0%s and 2%s because Trophy patches didn’t want to Install was a great first impression.
Anyway, some time passed until 2012, (the same year I acquired a PS Vita, Wii U and played more Steam games) but also when I first got “.Detuned”. It was a $3 demo/rhythm game thingy that was pretty freaky yet typical of Playstation. It was also short, but it supported trophies. I pressed on ahead, spent a few hours playing it and got 100%! I felt accomplished but not moved enough to make me complete more games’ achievements at 100%.
Later in 2012, I got my first (and surprisingly only) Platnium trophy, in Sly 2 – Band of Thieves. I never owned a PS2, so I was enthralled by The Sly Collection as it introduced me to the Sly Cooper series of games. I amazingly unlocked the plat as I beat the final boss. As a rule of thumb – Sucker Punch Productions makes really easy games to 100%, though Sly 2 remains the only game I’ve platinum-ed. Looks nice on my profile.
As the years went by, I played more and more games. I typically play games until I complete their campaigns and maybe dabble in multiplayer, but still had no desire to chase achievements. In 2013, I built my gaming rig, and in 2014 I acquired both the PS4 and Xbox One on the opposite ends of the year. Games – Fantastic games, like The Witcher 3 came around, but with a ton of content and all kinds of systems to require a 100%. Too much time. I played upwards of 100 hours of MGSV on PC, but was intimidated by S ranks and bonus tasks and shelved it. Again, a fantastic game, but a supposed grueling climb to all 42 achievements. Fallout 4 came around – FINALLY, a game with more fulfilling achievements, but Benevolent Leader (FUCK BENEVOLENT LEADER) grabbed me by the balls and made me grind, so I shelved that too. As an aside, the later patch made it easier and supposedly Bars provide more happiness so I’ll be retrying for an 100% sometime in the near future.
However, in late 2015, I was playing Murasaki Baby on PS Vita. I noticed how quickly I got 100%. It felt good! On that same vacation I got around to playing Forza Horizon 2 Fast and Furious, which was a freebie and maybe also glorified ad for the movie but I don’t know. I played it most of that day, and found myself getting addicted to hunting down every last achievement. From playing a couple dozen hours of Forza Horizon 2 (which I still have installed, and is a ton of fun along with FH1 on 360) I knew the layout of Europe pretty well, which helped me chase down the last few and claim my rightful 100%. I had never seen such a beautiful sight. Xbox congratulated me for chasing down every achievement. I felt rewarded, I felt great.
I craved more, but still hadn’t found my perfect game, a game accessible enough to get that fabled 100%. A catalyst, per se. Then I got around to Telltale’s Walking Dead in December.
I had unlocked most achievements on the 360, but had never played the 400 days expansion. Luckily, as is the nature of Steam sales and backloggery, I had both the game and its DLC. The last 2 achievements were missable (damn Two out of Three achievement), so I took great care in unlocking them.
17 hours later I got my first Perfect game! Steam once again congratulated me. I wanted to do this with more games. You could say, I learned to love the feeling. Then I went from there and played The Walking Dead Season 2 and Tales from the Borderlands. Both had easy 100%s and were awesome (despite TWD S2 killing off Luke and having everyone rely on Clem, also character assassinating Clem by making her a ruthless murderer at 11 lol). I had THREE Perfect Steam games, 1 Platnium Trophy, and 1 1000G under my belt. I felt unstoppable, despite my backlog I felt rewarded and ready.
The next two games I 100%ed were The Swapper and SOMA. Both heavily atmospheric and gorgeous, I joyfully got these in the same month. The Swapper had all 10 achievements achievable by collecting hidden notes outside of the map. Being able to find all of them was a ton of fun, along with the challenging but fair puzzles. SOMA’s achievements were all story based - like Telltale’s - but were fun to collect too. Both had some great philosophical themes, heh, the picture from The Swapper below was one of the stones you pass by in the space station.
Also, right before New Years I perfected a F2P game , Emily is Away. I was surprised at all the memes Em knew in that game (even if she turned out to be a capital B bitch later in the game), and put in some random strings along with the usernames required for the achievements just for fun. And it was fun, It helped me get my perfected game count on Steam up to a whopping 6!
And, the focus of my month so far has been 100%ing Just Cause 3 (which I did today!) Wow, some of those Wingsuit challenges made me rage so much but I saw everything through to the end. I wrote a cBlog about it last weekend, the game’s a ton of fun. The hardest achievement on its own was probably “Caught ’em all!” as you had to haul back around 50 vehicles to Mario Frigo (your guido friend)’s garage. There was a particular pesky boat that kept blowing up before I could get it there (pictured below) and also the “All The Gears” was both challenging and time consuming. A lot of close calls where I was only 100 points off from getting 5 gears in a challenge and a few challenges took me hours.
“Where to next”, you ask? Well, I have plenty of starting points. I may try Pac-Man Championship Edition DX or Sonic Generations to 100% on Steam. It’ll be a ton of fun. And also, I still have plenty of console games to 100%. I could go back and Plat The Order 1886, or Infamous Second Son on PS4. The sky’s the limit now! Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m gonna go sleep. Or play vidya on my laptop. One or the other. Doesn’t matter. I’m off for MLK day so yeah. Peace, Dtoid! ^_^