A common discussion i have noticed in different forums and during conversations with friends is the subject of trophies and achievements and how they effect each persons gaming habits and choices. Some people are for them and some against. Both have valid arguments which i have looked into for this discussion topic.
Collecting trophies and achievements is a great way to see more of a game and do more in that game than you might otherwise do. I have played titles that i have completed and then looked back at my trophy list and seen that its only showing 50 -60% completed and the urge to get that number up to 100% and get that platinum trophy starts to come in to play. Some titles i will finish and just end it their, either because the game didnt keep my interest enough to merit a second play through. Sometimes the games are just plain too hard to do again or have sections i dont want to replay. Other games however keep me wanting to come back for more and the trophies make a great insentive to go again. Some trophies arnt too hard to get i admit but when you get one that is known to be a hard challenge or signifies some important achievement in the game or personally then the feeling can be great. Theres a great sence of pride in yourself when you go up a level or gain that first platinum trophy. Theres a sence of completion you get. I think there is also an aspect of collection there as well. Getting something that others might not have can be alluring. Getting that trophy or 100% first or in a particular game especially when competing with friends. The ability to check other friends trophy or achievement lists and see how they are doing compared to you can be quite fun. Seeing that you are a level or two above someone on your list helps to re affirm in your mind that you are the better gamer (even if in reality thats not quite true). I admit i like the fact that my trophy count is high compared to most on my friends list and i dont like that there are some significantly higher than me but that just adds an added element of competition outside the particular games. I think that having tropies and achievements adds another conversation point to your gaming and is something to embrace and enjoy.
Collecting trophies and achievements can be seen as glory hunting or just playing to gain as many as possible as quickly as possible and takes away from the actual game you are ment to be playing. I have heard the term ‘trophy whore’ a good few times and i know of a few people who have bought many games just for the amount of potential trophies and achievements they can get. I will even admit that i have bought a game based on its trophies (TERMINATOR SALVATION didnt have many trophies but did have only gold ones, shame it was a terrible game). One problem is that a lot of these trophies and achievements are for silly or mundane tasks, i have seen on more than one title that by simply turning it on you earn a trophy or by doing something as mundane as looking at artwork etc. If you have one of these trophies did you really deserve it for turning on a game? Did you really look at all the artwork or just race through them to get the award? The biggest argument against trophies and achievements is that we didnt have then before the PlayStation 3 and the Xbox. We didnt feel anything was missing when we were playing MARIOWORLD or STREET FIGHTER 2 etc. If we didnt have them then and we loved playing those games then why do we need them now. Showing off what trophies and achievements you have doesnt make you a better gamer.
For me i like trophies, im all for them, it adds something to the fun of gaming without taking anything away from my gaming experiences. I still pick games based of if i will enjoy it and if its a title i want to play (after TERMINATOR SALVATION i will not be buying games based on potential trophies again!). Each to their own, if you dont like them then you are not missing out on anything important but if you enjoy them and it gives you something more then go for it.
Jedi junkie (Graham Coe)
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