Source: The Sixth AxisQuote:
Originally Posted by The Sixth AxisEarlier this week Nintendo announced that they weren’t thinking of adding a system similar to the Xbox 360′s Gamerscore, which counts your Achievements, or the PS3′s Trophy set-up. “Nintendo’s designers don’t tell you how to play their game in order to achieve some kind of mythical reward,” said the company’s Bill Trinen.
“Basically, the way the games are designed is they’re designed for you to explore the game yourself and have this sense of discovery.”
Trinen also suggested that the sense of mystery is far preferable than the two points systems, which he pointed out were little more than numbers. “In my mind, that really encourages the sense of exploration rather than the sense of ‘If I do that, I’m going to get some sort of artificial point or score that’s going to make me feel better that I got this,’” he said, “And that, to me, is I think more compelling.”
There’s legions of gamers that would venomously disagree, of course. To some, Trophies and Achievements are serious business – indeed, our very own PS3 Trophy List was not only the first of its kind but it still attracts lots of readers, and we’ve got our very own Skibadee doing a thankless job maintaining it. Gamers like the two systems.
Achievements, the first out of the door, give you a nice round number and a very easy reckoner as to who plays games the most, although it’s unclear at a glance as to that player’s particular skill beyond the total score. Trophies, on the other hand, show the four different levels of silverware, with Platinum badges obviously the hardest to get.
But what do they do in the long term, beyond providing a discussion point and a method of comparing with friends?
The concept of ’100%ing’ a game has changed over the last few years – previously games that required a fair amount of your time would come with a total percentage somewhere, which showed you how close you were to completing everything the game had to offer. Now it’s just a Platinum or a 1000 points Gamerscore, depending on your choice of platform.
Gamers don’t need to explore so much for themselves, a simple look at the Trophy list (or, of course, a list of Achievements) would show them everything they need to ‘do’ to get that final ping, and even though developers can opt to keep some Trophies hidden, it normally doesn’t take long for a spoiler-heavy list to hit the internet, and usually before the game is launched.
Are the rewards ‘mythical’ as Trinen says? In some respects, yes – neither Sony nor Microsoft has really found a use for these systems beyond what we’ve talked about above – they’re there to show you how many points you’ve got from playing the games in specific, pre-meditated conditions. Is the company right to completely ignore them for the 3DS? No.
Regardless of what an individual might think, or indeed a group of game designers, Trophies and Achievements go a long way to keeping gamers hooked to your system; before Trophies appeared multi-format gamers might have opted to buy games purely for the Xbox 360, for example, and Apple’s Game Center shows that it’s possible to get this absolutely right on a mobile platform.
Nintendo have always been a little internet-wary, preferring to dip their toes in the online water rather than jumping in stark-bollock naked, and that’s their call. Will the 3DS suffer from not having it’s own system of comparing your gaming prowess with mates? Probably not, but would it be better with one?
I wondered if they would adopt this or not!!!