I am an achievement addict.
Yes you heard me correctly. I am an addict, not to drugs or alcohol, but to achievements.
I suppose this story begins almost three years ago. My cousin and I had been doing some landscaping work around my uncle's new house, for the sweet price of $10/hour. We had worked a lot, and I had made enough money to buy myself a not-so-shiny brand new Xbox 360.
When I purchased the beast and brought it home, I was completely unaware of the experience I was about to have. With Saint's Row and Def Jam under my arm, I hooked up my new muse and turned it on. I was greeted with the friendly rev of an airplane engine, and a dashboard. In the top left corner, sat my new username, games, and "gamerscore".
At the time I neglected the word. I was too excited and brash to look into the guts of the system, I just wanted to play some games. In went Saint's Row. But just ten minutes in, my session was interrupted by a little sound, and a notification. I had just unlocked my first achievement. I have been a full-fledged addict ever since.
I have created new Xbox Live accounts as to have a "perfect" achievement list, devoid of any "gay" games or games in the dreaded "double-digit category" (below 100 gamerscore). This venture has cost me time and money, but still, the satisfaction gained was worth it. I crave these little notifications like nothing else in my video gaming sessions. I am an addict.
Now don't get me wrong, I am addicted to the rush of getting achievements, but at the same time, I am not crazy. You will never find me playing Hannah Montana or Avatar for the easy completion. I only play games I know I am going to enjoy, and all that nonsense. But all the same, I love getting achievements.
Three years, two systems and a lot of gaming time later, I am still collecting achievements. My gamerscore is far from impressive, (all those accounts together would probably put it over 20,000 though), and nobody truly cares, but still, I am an addict, and addicts need their fix.
Why am I addicted though? What makes me want these virtual points?
Truth be told, I couldn't tell you.
People always ask me why I care about collecting achievements, and the best answer I can give them is this: You care about leveling up in Call of Duty, I care about boosting a virtual points bank. Same difference. Nobody cares about your rank, nobody cares about my gamerscore, but us. That's all that matters.
Truth be told, my answer sucks. It isn't a legitimate answer, it really doesn't answer the question of why I'm obsessed with having a great gamerscore, but it's truly the best I have. Do I think some achievements are badly executed? Sure do. (Looking at you Elsa). But all the same, I really am tired of being ragged on for my choice of entertainment (i.e. achievement hunting), while the pastimes of others are left alone.
Another common question I'm asked is "What are the merits of achievements? What do you get out of them?"
This question is slightly shocking to me, looking back on how this hobby of ours was started. Arcades would sap of us of our money as we tried to beat the high score on Donkey Kong, remember? Wait, just a bunch of pointless numbers!
Yes, gamerscore is a virtual number, which makes it unimportant in the real world, BUT, gaming was BUILT on stupid, useless virtual numbers that meant nothing in the real world. In fact, gaming is my escape from the real world, which makes achievements a very accessible, fun to use feature for me.
So to recap, is my hobby stupid? Sure thing. Am I an addict? Why yes I am. But I don't need any achievement hunters anonymous meetings, or therapy.
I am an achievement addict, and I like it that way.
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NOTE: I have no ill will against Elsa. Don't start that shit.
NOTE 2: I know I should be putting more time and effort into these C-Blogs, especially if I want to become a popular writer around here, but frankly, I'm too busy collecting virtual testosterone to give a shit. Score 1 for the education system.
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