When I was asked this question it did make me think. I don’t have a definite answer to this, as with me it all depends on the game. Before trophies and achievements were unleashed to the world, which gave games more longevity, I was quite content with just playing a game and enjoying it. Games like Jak and Daxter, Ratchet and Clank on the PS2 were just a couple of games where I could just sit and enjoy them for what they were.
Whereas games like Final Fantasy are at times a hard slog and required you to put in around 30 hours minimum to complete. You’ve got side quests, extra weapons and spells to find etc and some people really enjoy doing this. But I prefer to get to the end of the story, and then move onto the next game.
But things have changed since the PS2 days and thanks to the digital age, we can now get extra DLC content for most of our favourite games which adds more time to our gaming experience. With the DLC comes more trophies and achievements, so just when is a game classed as being complete?
If I’m enjoying a game, I do tend to be a bit of a trophy whore and go for that platinum trophy and I find myself doing this more on the PlayStation 3 than on the Xbox 360. Why? Probably because I’ve got more games on the PS3 than the 360 and I play on it a lot more. Some games require you to give not just hours, but days of your life just grinding away to collect one more trophy which, to me, can be a tad irritating. Some people use it to show off to their mates of how long they’ve spent with the game and show off their rewards. So it’s games like these where I’ll complete the main story, grab a few trophies along the way, and then I’m done. Next.
But there are some other games where I’ll complete them and then go back to grab the last few remaining trophies I need to bag myself a platinum trophy because I’m only a handful away.
None of this is in any way a bad thing, as you can save a hell of a lot more for your money these days with games than you did say 10 years ago. Online has become more and more important for games, and if it’s not included in the game, then people will turn their noses up at some of them and walk away. Imagine Call of Duty without online! Would that be as popular? I doubt it.
Games like Call of Duty give players hours of endless, yet at times infuriating enjoyment. World of Warcraft is still massively popular with millions of people playing the game online with no actual end to the game in site. So can games like these ever be completed? If not, then it’s definitely money well spent. I love playing games like these, but I also like a game where I can pick up, complete and then put down so I can maybe come back to it again in a few years time.
So back to the original questions of, when do you know that you’ve completed a game? Well, it’s all down to personal opinion and the period of which the game is from. Some people may only see games as being complete after they’ve unlocked every last trophy or achievement. Others see a game being completed as soon as the main storyline has been completed. I personally think that a game is complete once I’ve become bored or there’s nothing else left to do with it, and I move on.
Will we ever see a game release that can and will never be completed? It wasn’t that long ago that somebody played WoW that much that they couldn’t get any further…until the next expansion.
What are your views on this subject? Are you a trophy/achievement whore and need every last one? Or do you play as long as see fit before putting it on the shelf to collect dust? Let us know in the comments below.
Danny ‘Ender’ Martin has been part of the Zath team from pretty much the very beginning since he met Zath himself at Leeds Met University whilst studying Business IT. He’s an avid gamer and a big film buff. Danny graduated from the University of Bradford with a degree in Computer Animation and SFX and now currently works at one of the biggest UK games developers, which will hopefully see some of his ideas hit the gaming world.