Feature

The Best Achievements And Trophies Of 2012

by Kyle Hilliard on Dec 28, 2012 at 04:00 AM

Whether you love them, hate them, or forget they exist until they pop on your screen and interrupt your game, achievements and trophies have become a (literally) required aspect of all PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 games.

I fall into the love camp, and these are some of my favorites from 2012. The achievements and trophies that I find most interesting aren't the ones that mark your progress in a storyline or reward you for attaining a certain number of headshots. I like the ones that force you to think outside of the normal functions of the game, or simply reward you for doing something weird.

Mass Effect 3
Mass Effect is a game that’s all about its story, and as such many of its achievements tie into specific  storyline moments. This is one that you have to go out of your way to get, and it's not easy. When you do pull it off though, it feels great.
Hijacker – Hijack an Atlas Mech

Journey
I actually have a very specific story as to why I like these Trophies so much, and you can read about them right here.
Ancestors – Find a mysterious creature hidden in the temple
Reflection – Sit and meditate with another player for more than 20 seconds

Dance Central 3
I got this achievement organically, and it made me laugh. Basically you get an achievement for being indecisive in your music choice.
Just pick something! – Skipped 5 songs in Party Time

Fez
This achievement, in a way, defines what is so amazing about Fez. It forces you to think outside of the traditional boundaries of video games in order to find an unlock everything.
Achievement unlocked – RTRTLTRTRTLTLTLT

Prototype 2
Born of an Internet meme, karate kicking a helicopter feels pretty damn good.
Arcade action – Karate kicked a helicopter

Read on for more of the best Achievements and Trophies of 2012.

Sleeping Dogs
Do I even need to explain why I like this one?
A slap in the face – Kill someone with a fish

Far Cry 3
There is a special area hidden on the beach in Far Cry 3 that recreates the cover of the game, and you get an achievement for taking notice.
Say hi to the Internet – Find the lost Hollywood star

Borderlands 2
I’m curious how the folks at Gearbox got away with calling out Donkey Kong specifically, but that’s a question for their lawyers. The second one listed below is all about rainbows and how amazing they are.
Definitely an Italian plumber – Killed Donkey Kong Mong*
What does it mean? – I can’t even capture it on my camera

*Editorial note: Turns out the achievement is called Donkey Mong, not Donkey Kong.

Dust: An Elysian Tale
The thing I like about this achievement is that when I unlocked it, I reacted pretty much exactly as the achievement expected I would. I even tweeted about it.
Wait, aren't you...? – Unlock a Cage and Rescue a Friend

Trials Evolution
We’ve all had this experience in a million games. This one just rewards you for it.
Nervous twitch – D'oh! You had a near-perfect run on a Hard or Extreme track, but blew it after the last checkpoint

Lego The Lord of the Rings
The first achievement below forces you to play out the schizophrenic battle highlighted so expertly in the films. The second one is a hilarious callout to a popular Internet meme, and it’s one of my absolute favorite achievements of the year.
... And away he goes, Precious! – Defeat Gollum as Gollum.
One does not simply... – Walk into Mordor.

Do you agree with my selection? Are there any strange achievements I overlooked? I still haven't forgiven myself for neglecting the "Cake or Death Eater?" achievement from Lego Harry Potter last year.