Monday, February 21, 2011


Have you heard of achievements? Cheevos? An e-penis? The Xbox 360 game system has something called achievements (the Playstation 3 has trophies). Basically, you do something in the game and a little icon pops up and gives you points for doing it. The points don't mean anything really, other than you've played a game a bunch. Actually, that isn't true, some of the achievements are actual achievements, stuff that is difficult as Hell to do. Others are funny, like there is a 0 point achievement for falling down a sewer in a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles game (I think, could be wrong, can't remember). Some you just gain for completing a chapter or segment or whatever you call it, of a game. The points don't do anything, you can't use them for anything, unless you have a lot of 100% completion rates for games and a collection of hard to obtain achievements. Then you can brag a little. I guess.

I'll be honest, I am an achievement whore. The first thing I do when I put in a disc or fire up an arcade game, is look at the achievements. The logic is, if there is something jacked up that I need to do and can only do it at a certain time, I want to know beforehand. So I can get me some cheevos.

If you've ever played Mass Effect 1, you may have noticed that the achievements in the game not only add to your e-penis, some offer in-game bonuses. For instances, earing one million credits in the game gets you the Rich achievement and twenty-five achievement points. In addition to this, it unlocks special weapons that can be purchased at certain stores in the game. Others include killing lots of organic enemies to get an achievement that gives you extra health or killing lots of synthetic enemies to get an achievement that give you extra shield energy. It is a neat system that I really like. It would be super swell if all games tried to do stuff with their achievements like this.

The point of all this is that I've been trying to come up with something along these lines since before we fully started the Rebellion Arc campaign. I recently read some stuff on the At-Will blog about achievements and bounties and karma and wealth points, and that wasn't precisely what I was trying to do. More recently, I found the Pathfinder SRD website and a section called Achievement Feats. Basically, you do a lot of something, like take one thousand points of damage over time, then you qualify for a feat that gives you a bonus to natural armor.

The achievement feats are pretty much exactly what I was looking to make, so now I have a starting point and I can hopefully come up with something interesting and useful for my players. Weee.

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