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The Game Informer offices are reeling from the discovery that associate editor Dan Ryckert has fabricated some, if not all, of his Gamerscore. Ryckert’s insatiable hunger was well documented, though even his harshest critics say they didn’t think he would stoop to this level.The discovery was made when executive editor Andrew Reiner noticed odd activity on Ryckert’s gamer card. It seems April 18 was a busy day for Ryckert. The Kansas native acquired the maximum 1,550 achievement points for the PC version of Fallout 3 and its DLC in the span of approximately 90 seconds. Sensing a scandal, Reiner investigated the situation and learned that this feat was only possible through the use of performance-enhancing cheat codes.
“I really feel like this puts a black eye on achievements, like the Barry Bonds scandal in Major League Baseball,” said senior editor Matt Helgeson. “It calls into question the very concept of achievements.”Arcade legend AAA says this is yet another example of how achievements have diluted the gaming experience. “This entire generation of high scores should be marked with an asterix,” he said.
Commissioner of Vault Check-In, Jeff Cork, has instituted a 50-day suspension on Ryckert’s vault access. That means that Ryckert won’t be able to check out games from the Game Informer library, including desirable new releases Splinter Cell: Conviction and the upcoming Red Dead Redemption. A second violation will incur a 100-day suspension, with a third offense resulting in a permanent ban from the vault.“It wasn’t an easy decision, but it needed to be made,” said Cork from his immaculately clean office. “A person who is willing to resort to these flagrantly pathetic methods needs a cooling off period. We hope he will use this time to better himself and to examine his life priorities.”Even without cheating, Cork’s Gamerscore is 939 points higher than Ryckert’s.Dan has said that he is sorry, though an anonymous source tells us that he is more concerned about continuing to pad his score than actually making amends. When told that he could continue playing new releases by buying games at a store, Ryckert mumbled some nonsense about being broke. He also claimed that 86,000 points of his Gamerscore were legitimately earned—something that can be refuted through simple arithmetic.
[UPDATE]Gearbox Software co-founder, president and CEO Randy Pitchford reacted to the scandal with an appropriate level of disgust. "Playing a kiddie game or using an on-line walkthrough are all fair game for achievement hunters," said Pitchford. "But boosting through exploits in the PC versions of games? Wow... That's, like, shameful. I'm sickened, Dan, just sickened.
"I'm lighting a torch and joining the angry mob outside the Game Informer Office until this scandal is settled," he added. "I am changing my name from Pitchford to Pitchfork until justice is served."
Strong words, indeed.
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