I’m done with wasting my time. Aren’t you?

The first video game I ever played was Tetris on Nintendo Gameboy. In fact that was the first “console” that I ever owned. Sure, I had computers and played a ton of games on them. Don’t even get me started on my MMORPG saga and lack of life in WoW raiding on Cenarius since Vanilla… (that’s another article for another time).

Somewhere along the way of playing games like Final Fantasy, Super Mario Bros, Mortal Kombat, NBA Jam in the Arcades and many other Arcade games (when Arcades were still around),  solidified my enjoyment of time spent with friends talking games and trying to beat each others score.

When did it all change? Or, more importantly when did I change? Or, was it the games that changed my outlook on them?

At what point did I stop caring about the game for the game and the characters and start caring about completing the game to get 100% achievement of said game?

It would have to be when I switched from being burnt out PC Gamer and need another outlet to work from. That was the new Xbox 360 console. The first game I ever played on it was Ninety-Nine Nights.  Don’t judge me. It was suggested by a guy at EB Games. (He has long since seen the error of his ways and suggested BioShock. I still rib him about his first choice. He’s a good friend now.)

It was this game which is pretty much thousands of enemies on a screen coming at you from all directions and you are just increasing your chance of early onset carpel tunnel syndrome (CTS) on every button combination mash. Basically, Dynasty Warriors but at a slightly reduced price point.

There was one achievement I was trying for, gathering all swords for all characters. But, the problem with that was the camera in the game was horrible. No, let me be clear. It sucked balls. Between the limited range and the invisible walls that was a stupid achievement for a first time console player to attempt.  I never got it. Even all the YouTube videos and all the guides couldn’t get me that achievement.  I moved to other games. Six years I’ve been a part of Xbox and it’s consoles from 360 to now the Xbox One. I’ve also ventured into the realm of Sony with the PS4 now too.

I have a gamer score reaching 90,000 of a possible 500,000. In six years, how many games do you think that I’ve 100% completed? 40? 70?

Try 27 out of 162.  Which ones?

Enchanted Arms
Avatar: TLA: TBE
 L.A. Noire
LEGO® Batman™ 2
LEGO® Indiana Jones™
LEGO Batman
LEGO® Harry Potter™
LEGO® Harry Potter™: Years 5-7
Dragon Age™ 2
WANTED:Weapons of Fate
Testament of Sherlock Holmes
The Walking Dead
LEGO Star Wars: TCS
Phantasy Star Universe
Sleeping Dogs
Might & Magic Clash of Heroes™
LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean: The Video Game
Saints Row®: The Third™
Forza Motorsport 4
Dragon Age: Origins
Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning
Lost Odyssey
Mass Effect 2
Mass Effect
Borderlands 2

These are in no way easy games to simply get 100% … Ok, sure Avatar: TLAB is but at least I can say I played through the entire game and not just at that one part where you could get all five achievements. A majority of these games are RPG’s that I have spent on average 300 – 500 hours in total. You can thank Skyrim for that over 550+ hours on all DLCs and main game content.

In all this time, I wasn’t really playing the game for the game itself. Some, definitely. All of those RPGs that I completed. Were for the love of the game and the story/characters.  But, games like Forza or the many Arcade games that are no longer available to play and thus increases your gamer score. Or games like Phantasy Star Online where you can NEVER get the last 250 Achievements because the servers are closed and they no longer support the expansion.

So, what game was it that has made me stop caring about getting 100% completion anymore? Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag.  I loved this game. No, really I did. It’s the best one in the series and Unity has some big shoes to fill in my opinion.  Before I traded it in, I have 100% completed everything: Side Missions, Searchable content, Animus fragments, Notes, Killed all 4 Legendary ships. Did the expansion packs as well. Two things just made me stop caring about this unattainable goal.

First, the side/objective missions. Kill X number of people that should really be on the Rooftops but they aren’t because they are lazy… All the while you STILL have to keep within range and that stupid Listening cirle while rushing through a mission so that you don’t de-synchronize.  Or, do not get into combat before you air assassinate person X. I was using SLEEP DARTS! I wasn’t in combat at all and STILL it didn’t pop.

Secondly, Multiplayer achievements.

Can we just STOP with this? Here’s why it is pointless to have them.

1) If the game is popular like a COD or HALO other shooter type games, then by all means, this is meant to have these achievements. But, if you have a game where you are an assassin, chances are there are not many people that will dedicate their time to actually getting these and you’ve just wasted time on content that could have been used to lengthen the game even more.

Assassin’s Creed isn’t the only game with a multiplayer component of achievement whoring either. Anyone remember The Club? How about Saints Row 1? Or a slew of other games that have these components only to be forgotten or your life doesn’t allow you the time to indulge in this goodness.

2) If the game’s popularity dwindles to nothing or the servers close RE: Phantasy Star Online… Then you have half a game that is not playable and the person that paid $70-100 for the game (obviously less if used) and if they are achievement hunters then they won’t pick up the game for it’s single-player component. Life then will eventually get in the way and even if you set aside time specifically to do some game playing, chances are your friends aren’t online and who really wants to group with a bunch of strangers.

Overall, I will never stop playing games. There’s still a sense of wonder and magic about playing a character that you love in a world that is new, fresh and not explored. I will be getting games that are single player, and maybe the rare game that has multiplayer.  Destiny is one where it will be my last game (next to Halo) that I’ll bite the bullet and pick up only because I know I have friends that will be playing it… For how long will they play them? How long before they too see that a game shouldn’t be about achievements, but about the enjoyment of a game played with friends… That is the real question.