As GIO members already know, Saint recently unveiled the first batch of achievements he's been working on for quite some time, along with snazzy images supplied by Born4this. Since I've been a member for a very long time here at GIO, I thought I'd assess the requirements for each achievement. As those who've been following this already know, these general achievements are something Saint and his buddies have been working on in their free time gratis, and the project itself is in no way officially related to or associated with Game Informer or those employed with them.

In this blog, I intend to review the general achievements Saint presented thus far in this blog, and consider whether they are reasonable by assessing their level of difficulty and any possible merits or faults players may experience by pursuing them. Before I delve into this, however, I'd like to point out that I am in favor of and support the GIA gamification project Saint and his buddies are working on, since it's completely optional and can be avoided by those not interested in this project.

So, in the order they were presented, and as they currently have been established thus far (this is still a work in progress), let's take a gander:


Blog Count Totals:

This series of achievements are incremental, and apply to the number of *quality* (as in posts that can be considered blogs) blogs a person has posted, capped at 999+. You'll get the first level of this achievement once you've posted your 100th blog. Once you've completed this, there's a small chance that you're also married to your computer. Hey, but different strokes for different folks.

This milestone challenge can certainly be an excellent way for amateur bloggers seeking to make it into the biz of gaming journalism or other nonfiction fields to hone their skills. Either way, if taken seriously, this achievement will definitely be an impressive talking point on your resume.

Yet, there's always the issue of what "constitutes" an actual blog, in the same way we short fiction writers have an endless debate over what constitutes an actual story. Thankfully, if you think a blog you've written that's been rejected was good enough to constitute one, you can challenge a verdict for a second opinion. Also, some bloggers have lost their blogs due to strange glitches, which is also worthy of note. Spammers will be an annoyance though.

 My final concern is about length. Suppose that, by some odd miracle, a blogger could post - and only one or two, if I remember correctly, has managed this feat- blogs everyday for an entire month. Since February doesn't have 30 days, let's assume 28 blogs every month. It would take about three years to complete this achievement at a steady pace. If a person posted every other day, it would take approx. six years, and nine years for every three days.

Difficulty: Hard. This will be a tough achievement to acquire, but one that, depending on your personal and professional goals, could definitely be worth it. It is something to shoot for however, and does give those who probably qualify for multiple achievements another challenge.


Blog Comment Totals:

Get an achievement once your blogs receive a certain number of comments, up to 100. Once you've reached 25 comments, you'll have completed the first tier of this achievement, up to the final tier, 100. This hopefully will encourage bloggers to choose more creative and thought-provoking topics, encouraging more dialogue. If you're spamming comments however, they won't be counted, thankfully. Based on what I've estimated, I already have completed this achievement - 156 comments total (eighty or so without my comments).

Those those who are active bloggers will eventually get this achievement. However, those seeking to gain this achievement might resort to "edgy" topics and inadvertently cause more harm and controversy with relatively offensive material. But, I'm sure this is a matter those who will be assessing those participating can mull over.

Difficulty: Moderate. With time, and better topics, bloggers will nab this achievement.

Blog View Totals (single):

Get one thousand or more views on a single blog to initiate this achievement. Once you've reached one thousand views, you've reached the first tier. The second tier is reached when a blog receives 5,000 views, you'll reach the next tier, and at 10,000, your blog will have completed this achievement.

Blogs continue to receive hits over time, and depending on how well you tagged it, and the subject's popularity, you can easily reach 1,000 or more views. I have several in fact, with more than a thousand views, and my Arrival review for Mass Effect 2's DLC easily earned more than two thousand hits when it was released.

However, if the subject of your blog isn't that popular, or, if you in particular aren't as popular, it can take ages before this achievement is completed. A couple on-topic blogs I wrote several years ago, for instance, still haven't earned a thousand views, let alone more than five hundred. After all, the attention-span of internet users can be a fickle thing. Just something to make note of in light of this achievement. Internet sharing will alleviate this somewhat.

Difficulty: Hard. It will take quite a while before a person gets five thousand views on a single blog, but it isn't impossible. Ten thousand, on the other hand...


Blog View Totals (all):

To obtain, indoctrinate an entire legion of readers to repeatedly view and reload your blogs until they all reach 1 million views. The first stage of this achievement starts at 100,000 views. You'll be able to tally up your total views through the Advanced Editor. Those judging your profile for this achievement will use that data to assess this achievement.

One positive is that you'll gain a sh*t ton of views. Yet, you might become an attention-nazi. Troll visits will be expected to increase dramatically also. If you're shooting for the Blog Views Total (single) achievement or the Blog total achievement, the spacing of your posts will undoubtedly affect the number of views each receives. Regardless, it will take some time and lot's of social networking before this achievement is completed.

Difficulty: Olympian. But hey, if Kratos can do it, so can you.


Monthly Blog Count:

Post a certain number of blogs each month; the first tier begins at ten; post twenty, or thirty in a month to achieve this. As for positives, this achievement can motivate bloggers to seek goals in writing, and also help teach the all-important rule of planning out what you publish instead of randomly posting. It will definitely teach writers to think critically about what they post as well as give them the experience necessary to understand the business of the process.

Unfortunately, Noobs will spam posts to get this, which most likely won't be worth anything in terms of quality. Of course, trashy blogs won't be considered in theory, since there will be people reviewing these blogs first.

Difficulty: Hard. This will require a lot of devotion, planning, and careful thought. It's recommended that those pursuing this achievement base their blogs on a particular theme or series to help them consolidate their vision and prevent it from becoming too obtuse.


Forum Post Totals:

Post a certain number of comments in the forums and get this achievement. Once you've posted about 100 comments in the forums, you'll earn the first tier of this achievement. It continues to 500, at which point you'll have mastered it. This should encourage more dialogue in the forums.

However, it might also encourage more spam-worthy comments in the forums, which are harder to moderate. It might also take time to complete if the forums you participate in aren't as active.

Difficulty: Moderate. This isn't hard by any means. You should, provided you're already a member of several forums, be able to get this easily.


Post a certain number of comments - not including the forums- and get this achievement. Once you've posted about 1000 comments (I have already), you'll reach the first tier, up to five thousand. This should encourage more activity and participation in the GI community, and hopefully stir up some interesting banter and friendships, if not rivalries.

On the other hand, this may also encourage post necrophilia and spamming. Expect more than a few annoyances adding incredibly-short comments that have little to do with the topic at hand or clearly display some ignorance regarding the topic.

Difficulty: Moderate. With time, you'll get this. Do some community service!

Guide Posts:

Earn this achievement after posting a certain number of guides. Once you posted ten, you'll have completed this achievement. I think this achievement will encourage players to share their own insight on different areas of a game players are interested in. It will also help players find those secrets they've been hunting for.

On the downside, it might also lead to spammed guides of irrelevant information- such as, information on achievements that actually does nothing more than restate what the achievements are. Since these will be reviewed, it's safe to assume numerous rejections will encourage those writing guides to improve their work. Also expect numerous people to copy-paste guides from other websites and claim them as their own.

Difficulty: Easy. Not much of a hassle to accomplish.