Thursday, November 18, 2010

What I Can't Let Go...

So we all have our faults, right?  Sure.  Right.

If there is a set of something in a game, I must complete it.  I'm kind of weird about symmetry and completion.  So if there's a seven-piece armor set and I stumble across two pieces, I must go find the other five.  Even if this armor set is not one I'm going to wear because it's not as good as my other one.

I'm not a player who must get every single trophy in the game, or every achievement, and I'm certainly not a min/max "best of anything" type of player.  But if there's a numbered, completed set to be had -- or worse, a map to be uncovered! -- then I'll be out there getting every part until it's complete.

The worst system out there for encouraging this problematic trait?  The Nintendo DS.

First there was Animal Crossing.  I didn't really see the point and I wouldn't have bought it for myself, but I was working for GameStop at the time and loads of customers came in for it.  And I was dating a guy who liked to buy two of every game, especially games with a multiplayer component, so that we could both do it.  So I ended up with a copy of the game.

And I made my little town, and I wandered my little red-haired bobblehead around it, and I caught some fish and bugs and dug up some shells.  And I discovered the museum.  A building in the middle of my town that was designed to hold exactly one of everything the town had to offer.

And that's how I was found in bed at my parents' house on Christmas Eve, with my DS on under the covers, at 2:45 a.m., gleefully becoming the owner of a coelacanth.  While in my mid-20s.

Eventually, I let Animal Crossing go.  I think there are still two or three bugs missing from my collection and perhaps a fish or two, but my house is full of pests and my town long since full of weeds growing as if in ruins.  But I still commute to work, and for a shocking percentage of 2008, I commuted with The World Ends With You.

How shocking a percentage?  212 hours and counting.

But, see, there are 304 pins to be had in the game.  And first I realized I'd blundered into 100 of them.  And then I realized I'd blundered into almost 150 of them.  And, well, right now I have 296...


  1. I'm really hoping that you never played Magic: The Gathering or any other collectible card game.

  2. I dated a guy in college who wanted to get me into it but I looked at his several-thousands-of-cards collection and knew myself well enough to avoid that entirely. Also despite the offer of a later boyfriend to buy them for me, I knew I was better off skipping the Pokemon games!