Published on Sat Oct 14 2023
Where have you been my whole life?
So there's this website, RetroAchievements.org, where they do what it says on the tin - you can earn achievments similar to Xbox Achievements or Playstation Trophies, but using emulators to play your retro games. Naturally, I've gone all-in the past week and have "Mastered" (earned every achievement for...) 8 classic NES games so far. Ok they're not all "classics", but they're the games I grew up with, damn it!
Here's a handy link to my profile, to check out my progress to date: Gloves · RetroAchievements
As of writing I've tried to play a handful of games in different genres: Shoot 'em ups, Action/Platforming, Arcade, and RPG.
Among those, the one that took the longest was, predictably, Final Fantasy; though there wasn't really anything particularly difficult about it (it helps that I've played the game many times and am very familiar with it). Elevator Action was easily the hardest, as it gets insanely difficult on the "last" (fourth) level. The achievements are varied and there are some much much harder games out there to play, or incredibly simple and easy ones depending on what you're after.
I've decided for now that I want to use the system to challenge myself, hence I've "Mastered" all of the games I've played so far. In for a penny, in for a pound! I want an excuse to get really into each game and this has been a solid way to do so. Interestingly, there are even extra "Subsets" of achievements which you can go for if you want to go the extra mile (or twenty) - stuff like speedrunning Super Mario Bros, or beating Final Fantasy with a solo White Mage (it can be done!). There's even "sets" of achievements for hacks, homebrews, and the like, they're very flexible and open to adding games to the system.
Speaking of adding to the system, it's impressive how far they've come, and how active they continue to be. Apparently this all started in 2012 (how have I missed it this long!?), and they have an impressively huge list of consoles with achievements available. Just load up your favourite (supported) emulator, and get to playing. I counted up the systems that have achievements tied to the site and they're at precisely fifty right now, which is just astounding. So many options for people to play and show off their prowess and love for the old systems.
Good chance that I start setting up the "Completed" state on my site here to be tied to this site, where applicable. It's just so great that it works so well, I'm loving it!