If you come to think of it (51)

Achievements are “the secrets for poor people”. Once upon a time, game developers put a lot of work and effort in creating game worlds (and thankfully many still do), where levels contained extra rooms and items, not everyone stumbled upon, who just ran through the game, without taking some time to cherish it as well. These items were often (or even always) beneficial to the gaming itself (e.g. weapons, ammo, health), it wasn’t just the satisfaction for finding them, they had their practical application too. That’s where secrets and achievements differ, because the latter usually offers no additional value to the gameplay experience itself. It’s quite clearly, once again, the cheaper, easier technique to seemingly add something to the game. Since it’s sometimes tied to actually meaningless gamerscores and whatnot, the real reason is much closer to binding customers to own platforms. Like services as Steam already do with their accounts anyway. Players are supposed to find it more appealing, to collect achievements on one and the same platform, over various. Achievements often only have a superficial value, like boasting about said scores. So it’s really just reinforcing/fueling something, that’s already a negative emotion.
Whenever I get an achievement for simply finishing a level, I’m asking myself if the developer thinks that I’m too stupid to realize that on my own. And if I would give you such an achievement for reading this entry, what could you realistically do with it?

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  1. 1 The Missing Link « adrift

    […] it pulled me in in exactly the same way the full campaign did. Twice. Missing Link also shows, that achievements don’t have to be dumb and lazy, when they are only rewarded for finding actual secrets, […]

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