I understand there is a huge debate over the merits of Achievements on the XBox 360, and for the most part I think people tend to make a big deal out of nothing. Either people put way too much into getting them or they often feel too strongly about how worthless the concept is and think it’s important to share this point of view.
I think like any standard of measurement, even as unscientific and illogical as it may be, achievements are only as important as you make them. For me though I established one rule that I have stuck by even though it has been painful at times. I will not put aside, trade-in, give away, or throw out a game that I have not earned at least one achievement while playing.
This was, in theory, my “give it a fair shot rule”. Since not all games dole out achievements equally I have often felt frustration trying to live up to my rule. While I don’t exactly flaunt my Gamercard I’m not going to hide it either. The one useful metric achievements has given me is an easy display that I at least tried a game before I used the disc as skeet.
I don’t think you have to finish a game before you can decide if you like it or not. A game that is absolutely brilliant in the last two hours but painful to play in the first two is not a good game. Of course, the typical game often shows the lack of focus it had later in its development the longer you go through a game, so if it was bad in the beginning it is likely to get worse as a good rule of thumb. My belabored point is that sometimes a bad game is just a bad game and wading through the manure hoping to find a diamond is a fool’s errand.
However, that said, I like to be able to “prove” I give every game that graces my disc tray a real chance. I won’t deny that it’s a point of pride that I will not dismiss, or even love, a game lightly.