Achievements, Mediocrity and Renting

Over the last week or so I’ve seen a few achievement (trophy) related posts. None of the posts had any cohesive bond other than they were about achievements but it got me thinking about achievements and their place in my gaming. It’s no secret that I like achievements (and trophies) but contrary to the probable popular belief I am neither a whore nor a lunatic completionist when it comes to them. I don’t play games I don’t want to play (Fozzy’s dilemma) and I don’t care much what my completion percentage is (like Mattius_Carl might seem too based on his post).

Do I play bad games for points? I’m sure I have (Cars, Eragon and King Kong, to name a few) but the reasoning is not because I want the points but rather because I actually wanted to play the game. It’s the same reason I have never played Avatar, NBA 2K6 or Fusion Frenzy 2 despite those games having an easy 1000 points.

I play games for fun and once I stop having fun I quit playing what I am playing. Recently I played Far Cry 2, which was generally well regarded, and I put about five hours into the game and I ended up disliking a variety of aspects about the game, despite there being a decent amount of points for me to achieve by playing it I shut it down and will most likely never return to it again. My free time is more important to me than points and as such I don’t have any problem leaving a game with a gaping 960 points left to be earned on it.

Achievements for me are mini rewards I get for playing through a game. I like them and I enjoy collecting them, sometimes even going out of my way to get some of them, but I have no need to snag all 1000 points from a game. My completion percentage hovering around 50% doesn’t bother me any. I understand the people who feel the need to complete things 100% and I feel for you a slight bit when you go from having 1000 / 1000 to 1000 / 1350 because DLC has been added but honestly its an arbitrary number that means nothing more than what I make of it and OCDs are going to be OCD, it is just the way things go. Online achievements (trophies) are an entirely different matter and will require me to write a whole lot more than the space I am allotting myself for here, let’s just say I see both good and bad in them.

On a somewhat related note while reading Fozzy’s post about achievement whoring I came to the realization that mediocrity is dead and that there is only terrible and great games anymore. Last I checked games that received a middling rating (5s and 6s) were mediocre (passable) fare. That certainly doesn’t mean they are good games but mediocre does not instantly mean garbage, it still means mediocre. Granted most gamers don’t have the funds to spend their cash on mediocre games and save their money for games that are better received but we as readers should remember for every mediocre game like Terminator: Salvation, there is something worse like Damnation.

Speaking of Terminator: Salvation it is on my ever-growing list of games I want to play however it is also on my ever-growing list of games I want to play but not actually pay for, of course this only gives me two options, one being shoplifting and the other being renting. I figured renting made much more sense than attempting to shoplift which brings me to Gamefly.

I have Netflix and enjoy the service quite a bit, especially the streaming videos through my 360. Gamefly to me seems like Netflix for video games without the streaming videos. I could seriously save myself quite a bit of money by playing games like 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand, Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena, The Wheelman, Wolverine, Terminator, and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen through their service. I’ve heard both good and bad things about the company so has anyone used the service and if so how do you / did you like it?

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