How Achievements Killed the Cheat Code

Assassin’s Creed III launched yesterday on the PS3 and Xbox 360. Just as the game launched, Ubisoft began selling DLC for the game that added up to $60, the same price of the actual game. Half of that DLC grants players early access to abilities, costumes, bonuses, etc. It’s essentially allowing players to pay their way to get ahead in the single player portion of the game. It’s also the sort of thing that used to be offered for free.

DLC abuse is nothing new to write about. There’s a ton of articles out there examining the practices of companies like Ubisoft. But there hasn’t been much discussion over one of the most obvious reasons developers are able to get away with it: Achievements.

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Cam9772238d ago

Funny you should do this, I've just uploaded my blog to this website detailing my thoughts on how I believe achievements are ruining games. Anyway, enough of that, good article. This is exactly the reason why cheat codes have disappeared.

violents2238d ago

I don't see how acheivements are killing cheat codes. He says your paying 30 dollars for something you used to get for free. So now you have to pay to cheat at something and your mad because you used to cheat for free? You could just play the game and earn all that stuff legitimantly. It's not like your not getting something you were entilted to or something. You bought a game and a good one too. If the only way its fun to you is cheat, I say too bad, get some skills and earn your ranks or pay the money to cheat.

IMO its just more insentive to want to play the game it was intended. The real problem with this is when they use it for multiplayer sections of games because if I want to earn all those unlockables like its intended I have to now compete with all the losers that walk in with everything the game has to throw at you because they bought their way to the top. That's not a fair game IMO.

The worst part is they know people will do it so they sell it to you. If the general public had the integrity to not cheat at everything(even things that your only doing for fun) than they wouldn't be able to make money on things like this and this wouldnt happen.

isntchrisl2238d ago

Cheat codes go way beyond actually "cheating." They were used to unlock all sorts of things you couldn't get by completing the main game. Goldeneye and Rogue Squadron immediately spring to mind among countless others.

I agree with you on multiplayer. That's one of the worst parts to come out the DLC era.

GarandShooter2238d ago

I have never bought an unlock DLC pack and never will, yet I disagree completely. Perhaps some with less time purchase unlocks to allow them to be competitive with the people playing several hours a day?

And you say get some skills? How about this: Every MP game allows you to start with everything unlocked and you lose something every time you level up? This way, people that have honed their skills from hours upon hours of playing don't also have an unfair weapon advantage as well. Now that levels the playing field. Makes sense, don't it?

I LMAO when somebody thumps their chest and talks about 'pwning noobs' with all the best guns and attachments unlocked while the people they're beating have the worst weapons, least map memorization and fewer hours in the game.

I agree achievements have nothing to do with killing cheat codes and the author asks you to take the leap of faith, instead of clearly defining the mechanism whereby achievements killed cheats. Does he think for one moment if achievements disappeared tomorrow unlock DLC would disappear? Devs/pubs have found something people are willing to buy and will continue to provide it as long as there is a market for it.

isntchrisl2238d ago (Edited 2238d ago )

Your games were gutted and DLC was provided. That's the scheme. Achievements became the distraction. And it totally worked. Extra Achievements are now marketed right along with new DLC packs.

People love them, unlocks be damned. And I don't consider that a good thing. I like Achievements just fine, but I wouldn't miss them if they all disappeared.

Hicken2238d ago

Yeah... no. That would be DLC.

isntchrisl2238d ago

Read the article. It talks a lot about DLC and it's part in the loss of cheat codes and unlocks.

jmc88882238d ago

Cult of personality. People can't do anything important anymore, that's what derivative based monetarism (fraud) and worldwide imperialism has meant. American (and the world) doesn't do anything anymore. So instead of making yourself feel better by accomplishing something that matters, now you can buy your way to higher levels and achievement show that.....what exactly? Nothing that matters really.

Achievements are okay, but the fact that so many people go overboard on them is just another example that when people don't have anything real to achieve in real life, they try pseudo-achievement, which is all what this is.

Cheat codes are great. It's not wise to do them from the beginning. But sometimes you just can't get past a certain level, or sometimes it aids in the experience. Really, who hasn't used the cheat code for GTA where you get all those weapons and can just blast away and have fun, when out, do it again. It's good quick fun. You still have fun playing through the game, but being able to go on a rampage outside of the game story is great.

It's a little less necessary then in the past. Who hell could get through Ikari Warriors or Contra on 3 lives? Pretty much no one. But nowadays games are easier by default, and then they still have an even easier option or two.

Nowadays what happens is, if a game has a cheat code, it turns off know to protect the sanctity of something entirely worthless. But okay, I get it. The flip side is you get two things. Paid boosts, and reduction of outright cheat codes.

So it's just a lot more complicated. Gamers do lose out on some fun side things, they are pitted against people who's single and multiplayer status has been bought, and overall less cheat codes because they screw with achievements. All in a backdrop of easier games (for the most part..there's always exceptions like Dark Souls).

Not every gamer is the same. Some just suck. Others don't have time. Some cheats even can neuter some idiotic decision by a dev. I can't remember anything specifically, but I remember some games the dev made some stupid decision to screw something up and almost make the game unplayable, but with it turned off, the game was great.

But of course people are going to pay to get ahead, in this world, it's the only way they can. They have no opportunity or future otherwise. So I don't see it going away. Especially not when they're making money with it. Paying to get ahead helps destroy games, but what does the dev care, when a game starts to die, they'll have next year's version ready to roll out.

ShaunCameron2235d ago (Edited 2235d ago )

Achievements didn't kill anything. Thanks to easier modes implemented in most games, cheat codes are no longer necessary. Why cheat when I can just beat the game on "Easy" or in some games like Bayonetta, "Very Easy"?

The only game so far I ever used cheat codes to get by was GTAIV. Mainly the final 3 missions. The other games I wanted to use them? I couldn't find any useful ones. So either I eventually got through the hard parts on my own or I just quit.