This is my 40th post on this blog. When, a few months back, I wrote my first article, I would have never foreseen to get such a result. For this reason, I wanted to celebrate by writing a special report but, since I had very little time to play in the past weeks, I opted for a rant instead!?!
So here is today’s topic: the trophies/achievements system.
The trophy system was introduced in the (now) past generation of consoles for a number of different reasons, the most important of them being enhancing titles’ longevity (or so I think).
As a matter of fact, I must admit that this choice makes sense, especially in a fast-paced consumer market which pushes you to buy a new title while you are still playing the previous one. Even when you are not interested in a platinum (or the trophies themselves), you are so encouraged to spend a few additional hours (minutes?) in the game, just to hear that “ping” when you succeed in getting your reward.
I understand and I respect this vision, nonetheless …. some trophies really INSULT my intelligence (provided that I have one!). I can bear something like “get a trophy for installing the game on the hard disk” (A.C.E.-R) or Easter Egg’s like “Crab Cakes” (Tomb Raider reboot – awarded for killing FeeFee The Crab on Shipwreck Shore), but sometimes it is just too much.
How? Well, check the followings out:
– The Last of Us (sorry guys, I have to be honest even if I consider TLoUS the best game of the entire generation) has a trophy awarded for performing all optional conversations (“I want to talk about it”). Trouble is, if you are rushing through the level because someone is hunting you down (or so you feel), you may not even notice that there were this kind of option (a “mark” above Ellie’s head). Tomb Raider has a similar trophy, called “Chatterbox”. The stupid thing is that conversations won’t carry over from one playthrough to another. Therefore, if you played the first time just to enjoy the story and discovered this kind of trophy in your second run, it might be too late to get all of the conversations. You are so forced to play the entire game for the third time!!
Someone calls this: “enhancing longevity”; I call it “inducing stupidity“!!!!
But there are even worse situations:
– The Last of Us (sorry, again!) has a trophy called “That’s all I got” awarded for “surviving all of Ellie’s jokes”. You activate this trophy in Chapter 5, just after escaping the ambush. Before entering the quarantine zone you’ll have to elude/kill a group of three hunters. After that, you need to climb over a bus to proceed. Being possibly hunted, I did it right away. None of us, I believe, would have waited a couple of minutes till Ellie said something like “Oh, we need to climb on that bus!” nor, after having heard that, would have waited another couple of minutes just to see Ellie pulling out a book and start reading through it!
So my point is: WHY?
I thought the trophy system was developed to stimulate your hunger for exploration and experimentation… What is the point in developing a trophy that the player will not get unless he/she already knows IN ADVANCE that it is there and he/she already EXACTLY knows what to do to get it??? What is a point in adding a trophy that does not depend on your skills (or, sometimes, luck) but only on reading an OFFICIAL walkthrough?
Sorry guys, but I really don’t get it. If you do, please shed some light on me.
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