This Weeks Geek - Extending Your Game

Video Games always have a goal. In the majority of games this goal is the complete and utter defeat of an enemy. But what does this really mean to us? Why are we actually playing these games? That is what I plan to delve into in this entry of This Weeks Geek.

As I said earlier the majority of games we play do have an overall goal in them. Whether it is to find the hidden treasure, defeat the evil overlord (or become him, he he he), or save the princess for the 10th time. There is (almost) always a goal. But what makes us work to complete this goal? The simple answer to this is gamer pride and self satisfaction. As a gamer I take pride in being able to say I have completed a game. It also gives me either bragging rights or the ability to converse on an even level with other gamers that have beat the game as well. The self satisfaction comes from having completed a task that was set before me. Same reason why so many redundant "Kill 10 dire rats" quests have been completed, it gives you a sense of completion. This in turn makes you feel better about yourself. But is that all there is to playing a game? Is there no more to it then finishing a game, or is more hiding in the code?

Many gamers now will attempt new tasks in a game. In a FPS a person will sometimes try to find the most entertaining way to kill an enemy after they have reached such a point with the game (competitive gamers need not apply) . Whether this be with all head shots, grenades, or shotgun only. Ever try to knife a tank to death? My neither, seems stupid, but that does not mean someone has not tried it. MMO's also have their own fun to them. You may role play your character when you get bored or you may find interesting uses for utility spells (spell stealing a mount before it was fixed). These tasks can extend a game for some time. Sure achievements and trophies have tried to take the role of giving users stupid or hard (or both) tasks, but gamers will always find ways to make the game their own.

How about you? How do you extend a game you are playing?  Or do you just stop after the end boss?