One of the biggest changes of this current generations gaming is achievements (or trophy’s for PS3 users). Adding this element seemed like a great idea, it took your in game activity both online and offline, and gave you achievement points to show off to your friends. You could get them getting X amount of kills in an online death match of Call of Duty or by closing the Gates of Oblivion in Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and hell, I thought this was pretty awesome. I felt like I had achieved something. Ahhhh 2007 was fun for me.
Fast forward to now. I have increasingly begun to despise the achievement system.
I have always switched between systems when I play. From N64 and Dreamcast to Playstation 2 and Xbox 360 I enjoy playing all types of games from racing to RPGs and the occasional sports game. I recently found myself enthralled with Dark Cloud again (If you haven’t played this PS2 title, go get it, one of the best games ever made in my opinion) and I felt free from caring that I had beat this game front to back previously, which at times makes me avoid replaying certain games with the achievement system.
I went for hours playing Dark Cloud and loved the story, characters and freedom I felt. It is a classic to me. Looking at games in my 360 line up: Bayonetta, DmC, Fallout 3, Fallout: New Vegas, Too Human and NieR just to name a few, makes me just kind of look at them and wonder if I feel like playing them again. When I pop one of those in I immediately feel downtrodden seeing the achievements list that I have completed. I feel like what the hell is the point? I have done everything possible in this game and I don’t feel like doing anymore. It may seem stupid, but that is how it has made my gaming experience out to be.
Achievements also made online game play more annoying. Half the achievements for games like Halo or Call of Duty based with online parameters. I understand it, but it gives into the worst part of online FPS games, the assholes that are obsessed with them. I enjoy a round of Halo or CoD, but some people are just way too into it.
Achievements are fun, but it has limited my interest in great games. I have no problem showing off what I did in Dragon Age, but I also miss when the achievements were mine to enjoy. When beating Ninja Gaiden on Xbox was essentially an achievement before achievements were even made. Seriously that game is difficult.
Between all the bitching and whining I am doing here I know that achievements will never go away. They can’t, too many gamers are obsessed with them. Now with new systems coming out we can expect that you will be able to port your profile into the new generation and continue on with your achievements and the such. I will not go against it, but I will say that before it was a golden time when you would actually hang out with friends to play games, when you impressed people with your in game characters weapons and the such. I miss that, but luckily I can still do that.