Becoming the "Thousand Master"

This is just a draft of material that'll be going into my profile.

I've currently set myself a challenge for my life (obviously I have other goals as well, otherwise I'd have no life at all):

"Become skilled in one thousand video games."

(1) What's the point of doing this? To answer that, I do in fact design games both for a living and as a hobby. Achieving a certain level of skill in a game demands understanding of the game at a tacit level. I believe that understanding many different game systems in many genres will make me a better designer.

(2) Why a vague term like "skilled"? Well, some games can't be "completed" as such (MMOs for example), and for others, "completing" the game once doesn't mean very much (arcade games, Civilization, etc). Furthermore, Achievements etc. are not a good measure of skill, since some games just throw them at you while others require you to get ridiculously skilled. So here's a more detailed list of rules:

- Only video games which are actually released for sale will qualify. No freeware games (although I'm proficient in quite a few), since otherwise I could do silly things like claim to be proficient in You Have To Burn The Rope. Indie games like the Touhou series are fair game, since they are sold rather than offered for free.
- For any game with a decent-length single-player campaign which is obviously NOT just a tutorial, completing the campaign on Normal difficulty or harder will qualify.
- For arcade-style games which require you to use "continues" to continue, completing the game once on Normal difficulty WITHOUT using any "continues" will qualify.
- For MMORPGs, getting to the highest level is not enough; a certain portion of the end-game content must be played. For instance, I feel that I'm done with WoW, since I've been part of several (successful) Kara raids and played in the Battlegrounds and Arena for a couple of months.
- Expansion packs do not count. (ack!)
- Sequels do count. Expandalones are handled on a case-by-case basis.
- Anything which falls outside of the above parameters is handled on a case-by-case basis. For instance, I would consider myself to have been skilled in UT '99 and Civilization 4, but not in Sins of a Solar Empire (despite having finished a successful single-player game in the latter).

I'll be starting a list to count the games for which I've met the above criteria. Just to compute a ballpark figure, most games will take about 20 hours for me to meet the criteria, meaning that I'd need to spend 20,000 hours to achieve this goal. At the rate of 2 hours per day, this will take 10,000 days, or about 27 years. I figure this is more than do-able within my natural lifespan, which is why I'm kind of taking it easy!

If anyone else wants to join in the challenge, you're welcome. :D

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Posted by 5parrowhawk

This is just a draft of material that'll be going into my profile.

I've currently set myself a challenge for my life (obviously I have other goals as well, otherwise I'd have no life at all):

"Become skilled in one thousand video games."

(1) What's the point of doing this? To answer that, I do in fact design games both for a living and as a hobby. Achieving a certain level of skill in a game demands understanding of the game at a tacit level. I believe that understanding many different game systems in many genres will make me a better designer.

(2) Why a vague term like "skilled"? Well, some games can't be "completed" as such (MMOs for example), and for others, "completing" the game once doesn't mean very much (arcade games, Civilization, etc). Furthermore, Achievements etc. are not a good measure of skill, since some games just throw them at you while others require you to get ridiculously skilled. So here's a more detailed list of rules:

- Only video games which are actually released for sale will qualify. No freeware games (although I'm proficient in quite a few), since otherwise I could do silly things like claim to be proficient in You Have To Burn The Rope. Indie games like the Touhou series are fair game, since they are sold rather than offered for free.
- For any game with a decent-length single-player campaign which is obviously NOT just a tutorial, completing the campaign on Normal difficulty or harder will qualify.
- For arcade-style games which require you to use "continues" to continue, completing the game once on Normal difficulty WITHOUT using any "continues" will qualify.
- For MMORPGs, getting to the highest level is not enough; a certain portion of the end-game content must be played. For instance, I feel that I'm done with WoW, since I've been part of several (successful) Kara raids and played in the Battlegrounds and Arena for a couple of months.
- Expansion packs do not count. (ack!)
- Sequels do count. Expandalones are handled on a case-by-case basis.
- Anything which falls outside of the above parameters is handled on a case-by-case basis. For instance, I would consider myself to have been skilled in UT '99 and Civilization 4, but not in Sins of a Solar Empire (despite having finished a successful single-player game in the latter).

I'll be starting a list to count the games for which I've met the above criteria. Just to compute a ballpark figure, most games will take about 20 hours for me to meet the criteria, meaning that I'd need to spend 20,000 hours to achieve this goal. At the rate of 2 hours per day, this will take 10,000 days, or about 27 years. I figure this is more than do-able within my natural lifespan, which is why I'm kind of taking it easy!

If anyone else wants to join in the challenge, you're welcome. :D

Posted by TMThomsen

Which kind of games do you work on, and where--if anywhere--are you employed?

Posted by 5parrowhawk
@TMThomsen: 
I'm making games for educational research at a university in Singapore. So far we haven't done any "big name" releases yet (at least, none that I'd be willing to admit to ;) , especially since the stuff usually ends up as the university's IP and gets "archived".
 
These days I'm not making any really BIG EPIC stuff. The latest thing is a mission-based 2D spaceflight game made using XNA - sort of Chromehounds meets Spacewar. I think the closest comparison is probably Captain Forever - I suspect Farbs and I had the same idea at around the same time, and was genuinely shocked when a co-worker pointed it out - but it seems that beyond the core idea we've gone in different directions.