There are three things that really get under the skin of trophy-proud gamers:
3 – Unlocking a respectable number of trophies in a game, only for waves of DLC to be added, bringing the completion percentage down and belittling your efforts.
2 – Quickly realising that you dislike a game, but unlocking its first trophy even more quickly so you have a dreaded 1% entry on the trophy list that can’t be deleted.
1 – Diving headfirst into a game, determined to unlock its platinum, only to have one ridiculously difficult to obtain trophy remain, acting as an impassable barrier between the player and perfection.
It’s the number one in our ‘list within a list’ that stands in the cross-hairs this time – the trophies that are so difficult, tedious or time-consuming that they ruin any chance of obtaining that game’s platinum trophy. Here are six of the worst offenders:
Trophy: Speed Demon – Obtain all time attack items together as one set.
Shadow of the Colossus is an action/puzzle game that consists of 16 battles, each one against an epic boss fight. The game is also an absolute masterpiece that is usually cited as an all-time favourite by anyone who’s played it through to its end. We could write pages singing the praises of this title but for now suffice to say that if you’ve never played it, do yourself a favour and experience it first-hand.
What the Speed Demon trophy is actually asking players to do is to defeat all 16 Colossi in Time Attack mode on both normal and hard difficulty. The first problem in unlocking this trophy is how difficult this is to accomplish – the time constraints can be very tight in some cases and leave no room for error.
The second problem is that attempting this trophy changes the dynamic of the game completely. No more can you take the time to admire the artistry or be awed by the ebb and flow of the battle, now there is only room for clinical precision. You must know each battle in intricate detail and even then unforeseen occurrences can ruin your run and necessitate retries. It turns the game from a sensory spectacle to an intense and often frustrating campaign that will deny that platinum trophy to most.
Trophy: Forging Master – You upgraded 30 weapons to their maximum level.
‘Fully upgrade all weapons’ may not sound like too egregious a request, but what makes this one so much more of a chore than in other titles is the sheer amount of resource collecting necessary to upgrade all 30 items.
NieR is a brilliant, underappreciated entry in Square Enix‘s back catalogue with an otherwise reasonable trophy list. The game is still highly enjoyable even as it reaches its conclusion, so at this point you may choose to investigate the trophy list and drain as much from this game as you can… until you come to Forging Master and see that it requires dozens upon dozens of hours of item farming that would soon force NieR to wear out its welcome. For the sake of the positive memories you have of this game, it’s best to give this trophy a miss.
Trophy: Olympic Mixed Martial Artist – Online Exhibition – Unlock all types of gold medals.
Trophies that require online play can generally be a frustration, but this one takes things to a whole new level, requiring you to fulfill a checklist of difficult feats that include winning by KO in the first sixty seconds of round one, win after being rocked (a state that almost guarantees defeat as long as your opponent capitalises) three times and both fighters landing over fifty hits per round.
Online competition in this game is tough enough that just winning the fight is usually a struggle, let alone finding opponents that you can impose your will on so completely as to nab all the gold medals. No matter how accomplished you become inside a virtual octagon, chances are that this trophy is one foe you’ll never conquer.
Trophy: Strumillionaire – Strum 1,000,000 times in GHTV.
Yes, this trophy is exactly as ludicrous as it sounds – you must strum the guitar hero controller a staggering one million times! So to break this down, say each song you play in Guitar Hero Live’s GHTV mode has around 300 notes. Even if you played ten songs a day every day, it would take about a year to unlock this trophy. Factor in this game’s tendency to crash and corrupt save data, resetting any progress that hasn’t been backed up and you can see why this is such a daunting task.
Then again, you could take the other option and constantly strum at full speed for hours until the trophy pops, an approach which will no doubt net you a trophy, a busted controller and a case of Repetitive Strain Injury.
Trophy: I Am the Best – MYCAREER – Purchase all skills that can be purchased
If you want proof of how difficult this trophy is to obtain, look no further than the 0.1% of players who have actually unlocked it. For all we know, that could legitimately be just one person! The reason for this trophy’s difficulty is that it depends on playing MYCAREER mode, which is undoubtedly the most tedious game mode in the series’ history, and potentially in video game history.
MYCAREER Mode allows you to create a player before setting you loose on the WWE Roster where you will engage in feuds with WWE Superstars, fight them many times over, move up a spot in the rankings and take on a new foe many times over in a seemingly never-ending loop of matches with almost no meaning, changes or story incentive. This trophy requires far more time committed to MYCAREER mode than we’re willing to think about.
Trophy: Treasure Hunter – Held every weapon and accessory
Few trophies have gained the level of infamy among trophy hunters as Final Fantasy XIII’s dreaded Treasure Hunter. This colossal pain in the rear requires a forensic level of treasure discovery throughout the game, accumulation of millions of Gil and farming – countless, painful hours of farming against the toughest enemies that the game has to offer while hoping that this is the time that the enemy drops one of the ultra rare resources you’ve been waiting for.
Anyone hoping to get this trophy will need to devote hundreds of hours on top of the time spent completing the main story and will no doubt need to follow a War and Peace sized guide just to understand the steps necessary to fulfill the trophy’s requirements.