Walking poodle skirts.


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Hey bro, I heard you like achievements?

We live in a world where children need to be coddled. Even when they don't do anything special, they need to feel like they are above the norm just for their ability to breathe. No more are the days of being called a dumbass for the stupid things you do. Now you are just "less understanding" in the things you fail at, and you are patted on the back just for getting off your lazy ass and giving it half an attempt. And now the gaming world has jumped on that bandwagon, and done so with both arms flailing as they belly flop into the pool of rewarding the mundane in our species.

Back in the day you got kudos for beating a game. I spent months getting to the end of Legend of Zelda, Mario Bros and every other game Nintendo put out. I failed, got laughed at by my friends who spent more time on the game than I did, and eventually gamed so hard I earned my bragging rights. But not the next gen consoles make you feel like you are awesome, even when you are barely grasping at mediocre. How do they do this? with achievements and trophies. Achievements are Xbox, while trophies are PS3, but for this article I will just focus on Xbox.

When I was a kid, you were bad ass if you got your initials on one of the top five spots in the big machines at the game arcade. And if you got your initials there, you played every day and improved your game to make sure no one got lucky and took your spot away from you. But the days of having exclusive ranks are over. Now you get kudos for just turning on your game and playing it.

It doesn't matter now how much skill you have. You can earn achievement points just for passing a level in the game. It's the equivalent of getting high fives for jumping on all the mushroom bad guys on the first level of Mario. YAY! You did what you were suppose to! congratulations on having hands! did you jump that one block off in the corner that most people overlook? Awesome! Here is another achievement! Did you pass the game on easy mode because you were too afraid to play it on normal mode? You are a god! Here is half the achievements in the game for just wizzing through it!

And just being rewarded for doing what you are suppose to do isn't the end of it. Xbox Live now has a site where you can earn achievements for getting more achievements. It's like getting rewarded for pouring yourself a glass of water, and then getting another reward because you were capable enough to be able to lift it to your lips and drink it. you can get achievements for getting a certain number of achievements in a day, week, month or year. you can get achievements for getting achievements in a multitude of games. You can even get achievements for getting achievements on the achievements that you got achievements for. And there is probably an achievement for achieving an achievable level of achevementation that is easy to achieve.

Being picked on helped you improve your flaws so you could be a better person. Getting bullied helped you to stand up for yourself and gain conviction and strength. Being laughed at helped you to choose wisely and make better decisions. And parents across the country did their best to see that their children gained none of these benefits. And now, when children escape the real world and slip into the gaming universe, they get patted on the back for running away from reality, even if they suck at it. Where do we draw the line between letting a kid know they are something special and spoiling them so completely that a fart pooed out in the wrong direction won't devastate them and put them in counselling for years to come?

If we, as parents, are too ignorant to see that diversity, failure and the need to fix our personal problems to be better and more productive people are not things to be swept away in lieu of overbearing praise and sympathy, then we run the risk of having a future of adults that feel they should be rewarded for just waking up in the morning and taking a piss without hitting the rim. What kind of world are we wanting to make when there are no demons to face, situations to conquer and enemies to stand up to? We already have kids killing themselves because they got mocked for their looks, beliefs and sexual orientation. Things that in my day we would just flip the finger to. Do we really need this to swarm over into our game world? Do we really need our kids to off themselves because most of the neighborhood kids could snipe the alien on level three and your kid couldn't?

NASA spent years getting a man to the moon. Actors spend years training to have believable characters. Writers spend years working to improve their literacy so people can not just follow their story, but feel they are a part of it. So why are children now being given the false belief that they should be rewarded just for breathing? And why is the gaming industry doing everything they can to perpetuate the issue?

I have a special achievement for all the kids out there. If you get off your ass and work at getting really good at one thing, and saving the games and their idiotic achievements for your spare time, I will give you the achievement called "success at life." And maybe if this achievement catches on, we might just have a gaming community that can be proud of working hard at their games like they do at life, rather than barely working at being alive in both the real world and the fantasy one.

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LightofDarkness2055d ago (Edited 2055d ago )

While I somewhat agree on many points, I can't agree about spending inordinate amounts of time getting good at videogames. Unless you are top notch elite and are going for that prize money, being good at videogames is not an applicable skill that will help you succeed in life. There's no point in spending 100s of hours getting good at Battlefield 3 for the sake of it. That's time you should be spending learning new, useful skills or honing ones you already possess, e.g. playing a musical instrument, drawing, singing, dancing, martial arts or even just exercising for you personal well-being. Games have a time and place in my life and I can't reasonably devote large chunks of time to any of that because I have other responsibilities and aspirations that demand more attention, because they're simply more important, objectively speaking.

That's not to say there's no good reason to play BF 3 for 100s of hours. If you're genuinely enjoying your time in-game and it's something you do to relax/have fun, go for it. However, if you're just playing the game to get good at it (i.e. grinding), then you may be "wasting" time. IMO, the only reason to play games should be to enjoy them (for the average gamer).

I personally don't care about achievements, I don't wilfully try to unlock them or care much when they're unlocked. Their main purpose isn't to reward simpletons, they're implemented for completionists to have something to strive toward once the main game is finished, and to encourage average players to keep playing. I don't really care about much of that, my only real goal is to enjoy the game. Anything you achieve in a videogame is going to be relatively small scale and barely above pointless unless it manages to somehow have a wide societal or personal impact (like real life achievements tend to).

Wintersun6162054d ago

I am one of those completionists and I'm glad to see a person who doesn't care about trophies but has the intelligence to not bitch about them and can understand why someone else likes them and respect that.

Even though I am somewhat of a completionist, I value enjoying the game more. I always play the game as long as I feel like (minimum 1 playthrough) without giving a single thought to trophies. If I enjoy a game enough, I don't care how many hours I have to sink into getting those trophies as long as I take my time with the game first. But if I need to spend countless of hours grinding something, feeling nothing but boredom and numbness, I'll leave it at that.

Also I was the same long before trophies or achievements. There are a lot of games I have beaten well over 10 times and done absolutely everything possible in them during the PS1 and PS2 era. Trophies are just a small but in reality meaningless incentive to keep doing what I in many cases have always enjoyed to do. Also they are an inaccurate but sometimes nice way to track my progress.

Bladesfist2054d ago

I hate achievements, bloddy pop ups in my games. In one of my previous comments i asked a guy why he was going to re buy a game for "Teh trophies" and if the annoying pop ups made him enjoy the game more and he said yes. Im quite confused tbh, but to each his own. Some like to game, Some like to collect digital points.

mushroomwig2054d ago

'Some like to game, Some like to collect digital points.'

God forbid someone to like both, right? Trophies and achievements are a nice little reward as long as the game itself is fun to play.

Bladesfist2054d ago

I never said that, this guy bought a game for the trophies.

SilentNegotiator2054d ago

"I hate achievements, bloddy pop ups in my games"

Change the settings, then.

Bladesfist2054d ago

I already have, and the comment was about people who buy games just for trophys, I dont get why people are getting upset.

mushroomwig2054d ago

'I never said that'

You did though, I quoted you! You're basically saying that there are two types of gamers, one that likes to game and the other likes to collect digital points. All I'm saying is there are gamers who like both, like me.

MrBeatdown2054d ago (Edited 2054d ago )


I'm a little confused by this, because in going after achievements, I've completed far more difficult tasks in games than I ever have. You got to the end of Zelda or Mario? Good for you. To get some of my achievements, I beat Call of Duty 2 on Veteran. I passed every time trial and speed run in Mirror's Edge. I reached the top rank in MotorStorm: Pacific Rift (they rank you down if you suck BTW). I beat Shao Kahn on the hardest difficulty in Mortal Kombat. I beat Metal Gear Solid 2 on Extreme. All of those were a major bitch to accomplish. You make it sound like achievements and trophies are just handed to you, but there are just as many that require a ton of effort and skill.

Yeah, there are easy ones, but that's nothing new. I got points for picking up my first ring in Sonic. I got points for clearing a single line in Tetris. I don't know why you think it's such a problem that you get points for beating a level today when it's nothing new.

I don't see the problem with achievements. It's a high score, which is nothing new. The only difference is that it's across all games instead of just one. And there are always the achievements that you don't have. There is always a way for you, and others to see what you can't do.

I don't know why you bring parenting into this either. I don't think kids are going to be screwed up if they get a trophy for beating a level in Ratchet and Clank. I think they'd be a little more screwed up if they were bullied, picked on, and laughed at, which for some reason, you think is beneficial. I feel bad for your kid if you think he's better off being bullied at school than getting some points in a video game.

TooTall192054d ago (Edited 2054d ago )

I like achievements, but I rarely try to get them. I watched a Resistance:BS video preview on IGN and the editor was glad about the game having easy trophies.

This doesn't make sense to me at all. Should people get more enjoyment out of completing an easier task? I feel this is sending the wrong message.

A general rule for life:
The harder the accomplishment, the better you feel completing it.

Wintersun6162054d ago

Completely agree. Beating MGS2 and GoW3 on Extreme and Titan had a lot of very frustrating boss battles, some of them I had to try well over 50 times before getting them right. Also 500 VR Missions, some of the missions were just sadistic but I completed them all. DX:HR, I completed the game on Deus Ex difficulty, no kills and no alerts. A few examples of time confusing and hard trophies, and the harder they are, the better I feel after getting them.

2054d ago
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