Shack Chat: What's your greatest video gaming achievement?

The Shacknews staff thinks back over the biggest highlights of their gaming careers.

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Video games are very personal experiences: though the content itself may be largely identical for everyone, each player walks away with a different take on the events. Sometimes, the biggest takeaways aren't even related to the games themselves, but rather the way they make us feel, or how they develop our tastes or even our lives.

Following up on last week's Shack Chat concerning our favorite Western-themed video games, this week's Shack Chat dives into some of our proudest gaming-related achievements. From small to large, in-game and out, these are the moments and milestones that have stuck with us the most.

Question: What is your greatest video gaming achievement?


Brittany Vincent, Senior Editor

Honestly, nabbing the Dreamcast backpack I wanted for years was an important milestone for me. I saw it online years ago announced as part of the Galaxxxy x Segakawaii collaboration in Japan, and foolishly opted not to buy one during its first run. Then, when I decided I wanted to spend the $400, it was nowhere to be found on eBay. I ended up finding it after some extensive research and spent hundreds of dollars via Japanese shopping proxy to get it, and it's been chilling in my closet ever since. It's my cherished possession. I don’t care if it’s dumb. This thing is sick.

Musho Rodney Alan Greenblat personally sending me high-res photos of Lammy from Um Jammer Lammy to use for my tattoo years ago was another high point (thank you, Musho!), as was getting in touch with Osamu Sato for the first time anyone had in years. Working for nearly every major video game publication (and elsewhere) as a freelancer at some point in my writing career so far, spanning 11 years, has been pretty awesome too. Proud to call Shacknews home, though!


Asif Khan, The best in the universe. Remember that!

Pick an F-Zero. Either completing F-Zero X death race mode in 56 seconds or completing every F-Zero grand prix on Master.

I picked two things, deal with it.


David Craddock, Long Reads Editor

I beat Champion’s Road in Super Mario 3D World. AMA.


Kevin S. Tucker, Doesn't Own A Microwave

There are a number of different milestones of my gaming career, but truth be told, not all of them seem worthy of mentioning here. I’ve beat countless games, spending hundreds of hours in some — I did long ago earn 200.6% completion in Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, that was a trial — and I’ve scored Platinum trophies for something like a dozen different PlayStation titles by now, including big titles like Fallout 4 and Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain.

Still, the most exciting accomplishment I can think of recently is admittedly very small: earning my first-ever Ace in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive competitive gameplay. I was AFK at the very start of the match, probably running to the fridge to grab myself a cold one, and had just enough time and only enough money to buy a Mac-10 before the buy period ended and my teammates were wiped out. The events that followed can only be described as deeply embarrassing for the opposing team, but I took them out handily, even managing to plant the bomb before scoring a wild mid-range headshot on the final CT.

I’ve yet to earn another Ace since, but I do at least now hold a greater respect for the Mac-10. Thankfully, I also managed to grab the above screenshot, proof positive of my accomplishment as well as how quick I was to jump into voice chat and start cheering.


Chris Jarrard, Looks like Wario IRL

My greatest gaming achievement has not yet happened, but will come soon. I will dominate the upcoming Shacklemania stream for Extra Life 2018 this Saturday. I will dominate all my weakling co-workers to become the greatest internet wrestling champion of all time. People will talk about it for years to come.

My coworkers are jealous of me. They want my moves. They want my hair. They wish they were me, because they know I have no equal. Sure, Extra Life 2018 is supposed to be about the kids, but if we’re all being honest with each other, we know that I’m the real attraction.


Blake Morse, Chatty Rocket League Champion

When it comes to the world of electronic sports I don’t just talk the talk as Shacknews’ resident commentator, I also walk the walk as one of three reigning Chatty pick-up tournament Rocket League champions. As a Rocket League player, I’m somewhere in the middle of the road as far as skills are concerned, but what I lack in skill I make up for in gumption. It also doesn’t hurt that I was randomly paired up with two of the best players in Chatty.

While most of the time I was humbly riding their coattails as they pulled off physics-defying shots from high in the sky I wasn’t completely useless. In the last round I actually pulled off the goal that led us to our final victory. I had never played Rocket League at such a high tier before and I came away a better player for it. While I’m still nowhere near a pro, I do know rockets just slightly more than the average player now.

Beyond my epic electronic sports victories, I also felt quite full of myself when I finally got every achievement in the original Borderlands. I’m a big fan of the series overall and it’s rare for me to spend enough time in a game that I get close to completing even half of its challenges. It’s one of only a handful of titles that I’ve 100%-ed and it felt friggin’ great to do it.


Charles Singletary Jr., Man of Few Gaming Accomplishments

I’ve never personally taken much stock in things I felt others would see as an accomplishment, but there are some personally memorable milestones that I’ll never forget. Overcoming specific boss fights in many JRPGs (FFX’s Seymour Flux comes to mind), kicking my friends’ butts in tons of fighting games, etc. All of those are favorites, but I’ll share one that involved me wanting to experience a specific community of players that’d I’d only read about.

Throughout my entire life of gaming, I’ve dabbled in a few MMORPGs. I’ve played a few free ones like Grenada Espada and Fly For Fun, tackled the world of Guild Wars on and off, and even fought like hell through the first 25 levels in Final Fantasy XI. It was actually that last one that turned me off to MMORPGs for a while, but I’d always wanted to experience the coveted End Game of similar games.

World of Warcraft was the popular option among people I know who also play MMORPGs, but the game never really pulled me in, despite me giving it a full month. I have an exceptionally long history with Final Fantasy, though, which is why XI initially appealed to me. The experience I had was horrendous, but Final Fantasy XIV looked like another chance to give it a go. Well, after it failed miserably and was rebooted. I snatched up access to the final beta for Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn, the beta that rolled into the full game, and warned all my close friends that I was going to stick with this one until I hit the level cap and experienced end-game raids and dungeons. Some of those friends even joined me.

I’ll save the details for a Shacknews Twitch stream, but I made it to the level 50 cap well before any of my other friends did. I essentially treated the game like a job, planning out my path meticulously and dedicated blocks of time after or before my actual day job to acquiring some particular item, level, etc. Throughout it, I met a lot of pretty cool people that I chatted with using Mumble (had my laptop sitting on a table next to me while I played the game on PS4) and joined one of the top 3 companies on the server. Raids? They took the game an entirely new level and I relished playing them over and over hoping for that crucial drop. I also learned that I’m a pretty good tank, despite the fact that I was playing on a controller. Early on, people could tell. By the time I reached 50, no one could. This story is getting a bit long, so I’ll just end by saying it was some of the most fun I’ve ever had gaming. Writing this, I remembered there’s also a story about some guys challenging me in Halo 2 while I was working at Gamestop, but I’ll save that for another time.

Oh I’ve also beat Streets of Rage 2 and Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie on Sega Genesis around a hundred times with my best friend Jeff. Cheers.


Bill Lavoy, Bear Hunter Extraordinaire

All of my greatest video game achievements are things that took a huge commitment and willingness to grind on my part. I love to talk about The Long Dark, so I almost went with the first time I climbed Timberwolf Mountain, or the time I made myself live in Hushed River Valley for 30 days, but I think what I’m most proud of is something that, after doing once, became a habit of mine and changed my gaming experience for the better.

Fast traveling is a common thing in open-world games, even the great ones. However, it once occurred to me that the best open worlds are the ones that are interesting to be in, and that by fast traveling I was missing out on brilliant little details and experiences. As I fired up a new run of The Witcher 3, I implemented a self-imposed no fast travel rule. This resulted in three things that improved my experience not only in The Witcher 3, but other open-world games.

First, I had to plan every step that I took differently. When I had to take a long trip to complete a main quest, I would line up side quests and places of interest that I would need to visit while I was in the area. The same way that I wouldn’t drive across town to run one small errand in real life, I wouldn’t ride Roach across the map to complete a single side mission.

The second discovery I made was that I enjoyed being in the worlds much more. They were more alive when I wasn’t spending great amounts of time in load screens, turning in a quest, and then fast traveling across the map to do it again. This didn’t just go for The Witcher 3, but also for Fallout 4. Man, that was a world I loved to be in, and not fast traveling was the smartest thing I could have done there.

The last thing I learned was the difference between what I felt were great worlds and those that were just okay. I tried to not fast travel in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, but I didn’t have it in me. That world just doesn’t have the same depth that Fallout 4, The Witcher 3, and Red Dead Redemption 2 have. There came a point where I just wanted it to be over as quickly as possible, even though overall I enjoyed the game.

I know it seems odd, but my proudest achievements are never trophies or tests of skill for me. It’s always about how far I’m willing to go. It’s about creating my own objectives and sinking into a world and forcing myself to grow as a gamer.


Sam Chandler, Guides Editor

There have been countless games I’ve completed that have left me overjoyed to have finally succeeded. There have been sections of games, individual levels or moments within levels, that have made me cry out in frustration and then jubilation at finally beating them. I’ve got video game achievements (and actual Achievements) that I thought I’d never get. One of the best moments was surviving to 1,000,000 points without dying in Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved. But all of them haven’t gone down in history.

The only thing that has actually been a somewhat noteworthy “achievement” in gaming was when I took it upon myself to reach level 40 in Destiny using only the first mission. It took the better half of a year, playing for an hour a day, grinding out that same mission, but in the end I had something people could watch in amazement. It was a monumental waste of time, it was utterly stupid, it had very little real-life application, but when we’re talking about video games and the achievements made within a digital realm, what isn’t?


Are you as proud as we are with our various gaming achievements? Which moments in your gaming career left you most excited? Let us know in the Chatty below.

From The Chatty

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    November 2, 2018 3:00 PM

    Shack Staff posted a new article, Shack Chat: What's your greatest video gaming achievement?

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      November 2, 2018 7:11 PM

      Bump for being the best in the universe, remember that.

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        November 2, 2018 7:38 PM

        I bet if you deleted the intro to these posts ("x posted a new article," etc), and just posted the statement, they'd be more popular. Also, keep the link separate. I stop reading at the comma. I dunno why. You should make it sound more like a person. Give the Shacknews poster a personality.

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      November 2, 2018 7:15 PM

      Probably all the games I beat as a kid back before looking things up on the internet was a thing. I must have been bored as hell to put up with that bullshit.

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        November 2, 2018 7:16 PM

        Occasionally I’ll replay an older game and run into impossible situations that I somehow managed to overcome back when I originally played without internet assistance. I have mad respect for my old self.

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        November 2, 2018 7:30 PM

        Yeah, I struggled with picking between F-Zero vs F-Zero X. I was 10 when I beat all the Grand Prix on Master. 17 when I was playing F-Zero X death race like a boss.

        We just had more time when we were in middle school. And yeah, no shackfaqs to look up.

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          November 2, 2018 7:34 PM

          Yea there’s no way I could beat something like that, today.

          I just replayed Baldurs Gate 2, not a particularly hard game, but there was still a bunch of times I needed to google how to beat things, and I know I had to figure it out on my own when I originally played because google was barely even a thing back then.

          Seems like games are a lot easier/more transparent today, too.

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        November 2, 2018 7:37 PM

        Getting good enough at Snake Rattle n Roll such that I could reliably get to the last level every time.

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        November 2, 2018 8:12 PM

        I'd probably go along with this. Before being able to look things up you sometimes really had to work to figure something out. Most of it was adventure games, and rest hidden areas, bonuses, etc.

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          November 3, 2018 1:28 AM

          True. In WoW, it takes 3 seconds to alt-tab out and look up guides on wowhead.com. There's no mystery, no challenge.

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            November 3, 2018 6:33 AM

            Back in the original MMORPG days, you had to stumble across all of it. Heh.. Everquest made it hard to find where the quests were.

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        November 3, 2018 6:41 AM

        Beating Ultima IV (C64) without the map, manual or spell book; took me about five years! Hand drew my own land and dungeon maps (on graph paper) and figured out all of the controls and spells—which you had to actually have ingredients and steps for—by trial and error and asking a lot of questions in-game.

        For modern games I guess: 100%ing Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag just over 2 years ago (PS4), the first time I’ve ever 100%d a game. Almost bought the Rogue remaster last night, actually, as I was craving that experience again, but replaying AC IV again at this point might be overkill. (I think that was my 3rd actual playthru of AC IV).



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      November 2, 2018 7:39 PM

      Have the lowest ratio of unfinished games to games owned (something like 2 finished:300 owned) of any gamer I know in real life

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      November 2, 2018 7:54 PM

      Getting the full Wrath warrior set before Crimsonbeak

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      November 2, 2018 8:11 PM

      Right now it's my 70+ kills as Moira with over 14k healing in Overwatch.

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      November 2, 2018 8:11 PM

      Halo: Reach Legendary Lone Wolf

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      November 2, 2018 8:13 PM

      Probably maxing out my characters in Final Fantasy III (SNES original release version). I think that's the only time I was able to sink the time to do that. I plan to try to do it with Dragon Quest XI, but it'll take me about 2 years at my current pace of 45-60min a night.

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      November 2, 2018 8:16 PM

      Goldeneye invincibility unlock because it took me like 500 attempts. I still can vividly remember the couch, walls and design of my parents half finished basement, the room in which I made my attempt over and over

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      November 2, 2018 8:30 PM

      I was really good at Bad Company 2 often #1 on my team.

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      November 2, 2018 8:49 PM

      Possibly the number of games I've completed or perhaps the scope of my collection. Very real possibilty of getting a complete us PS3 set.

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      November 2, 2018 8:58 PM

      I guess first Ragnaros kill of the server on WoW back in the days. I also got the drop as a rogue, so I was the only rogue on the server with the legendary dagger he dropped. My e-peen was very high for a day, then I sold my account the next lol

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      November 3, 2018 12:13 AM

      jboots

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        November 3, 2018 1:27 AM

        I camped that damn sand giant for so many hours but never got those boots. :(

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      November 3, 2018 12:45 AM

      I beat Halo 1 on easy using the original Duke controllers...and my feet.

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      November 3, 2018 1:25 AM

      Rogue "Ragebringer" epic dagger in EverQuest.

      Getting gear in EQ was hard and required a team, but getting it felt like a real accomplishment. In WoW, although it's fun to just steamroll through raids in LFR-EZ-mode, it doesn't feel like an accomplishment, and the epic-quality loot doesn't feel epic at all. :/

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      November 3, 2018 5:31 AM

      Completing lemmings 2 after playing a whole nightery and one hour just before my final exam ever. I could still see those levels throughout my exam. Passed it barely and got graduated from uni. End of game, end of lifestyle as I had to start looking for a job now.

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      November 3, 2018 5:33 AM

      I managed to finish the first level of Daikatana without going insane

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      November 3, 2018 6:58 AM

      Getting to the second to last level of Battletoads is up there.

      Probably platinuming Dark Souls is the big one.

      However, "platinuming" DK Jungle Beats with friends (as in receiving a platinum medal for every level) might be the most esoteric.

      My friends and I didn't even realize there was a platinum medal until we had nearly finished getting gold on every course. Platinum requires near perfect precision on every level to get the combo meter up just so you can come close to getting enough points.

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        November 3, 2018 7:01 AM

        Oh! I also managed to fight and kill the Pink Puff enemy like 8 or so times in Final Fantasy 4. I never found the pink tail though. The rumor was that you had a 1/64 chance of fighting the enemy in a single room in the crystal caves on the moon, and then you had a 1/64 chance of them dropping a tail, which would unlock an ultimate item from the Excalibur smith.

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      November 3, 2018 7:02 AM

      Winning the first round of a Counter-Strike match as a CT with dualies.

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      November 3, 2018 8:47 AM

      Quitting WoW

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      November 5, 2018 2:30 PM

      100% in GTA IV.

      Prior to that, I'd never really tried to get 100% of anything.