5 Games I'm Stupidly Proud Of Completing

You place the controller down. Exhale. The tension leaves your body, you slowly flick your eyelids open in a zen-like trance. Finally, you have done it. It's over. You've done it. The game is over. The credits roll, you allow yourself a moment to drink it all in. Then you start Facebooking and tweeting about what an awesome human being you are.

This is what it means to finish a video game in this day and age.

I've been playing video games for as long as I can remember, I've even managed to complete a few. But there are a few moments that stand out. Moments like the above — with the zen-like states, the genuine sense of achievement. Moments you might actually consider writing home to Ma and Pa about.

These are the five games I'm most proud of finishing.

Secret of Monkey Island

The Year: 1990 The feeling: Smug sense of intellectual superiority

Why I was so proud...

It may seem strange to start with Monkey Island. It's far from the twitchy, skill based type of game you'd expect me to be proud of completing. When Monkey Island was released it was an adventure game that was essentially famous for refusing to kill players. You can't die in Monkey Island, hence it's pretty easy, right?

Well, yes and no.

I was nine years old when Monkey Island came out and I fell in love. It might have been the music, it might have been the writing. It might have been the idea of exploring these islands, solving puzzles, I don't know. The point is — I was nine years old and I had barely worked out how to tie my own shoelaces and wipe my own arse. Completing a game like Monkey Island which featured some pretty wacked out puzzles that made no sense whatsoever felt like a pretty big deal back then.

And it was also the moment when my policy of 'no game guides/gamefaqs allowed' was born. I went through every single puzzle in Monkey Island without even peeking at the multitudes of guides that appeared in Amiga Power or whatever magazine it was I was subscribed to at the time. That left me with a smug sense of intellectual superiority that has stubbornly remained to this day.

I even did that crazy potion puzzle in Act 2 by myself! I earned that smug!


The Year: 2008 The Feeling: Like your Dad after he solved the most difficult crossword puzzle ever conceived.

Why I was so proud

Reactions to Braid were all over the joint. Some wanted to analyse what they had just played, others shared theories. Some were confused. Soulja Boy made a YouTube video about it.

I ignored all that. I was too busy solving the puzzles, one by one, massaging my ego to the point where I could feel the enormity of it pressing against the front of my skull.

In short, Braid made me feel like a goddamn genius.

Anytime I do something a little bit stupid, like leave the car lights on or trip over my shoelaces, I just go home, fire up Braid and look at the leaderboards. I look at my perfectly completed set of Jigsaw pieces. I see the multitudes on my friends list who just couldn't hack it, who gave up halfway through, or just couldn't get those last two pieces. Or I see my brother's completed set, but rest safe in the knowledge that he totally had to call me at 3 in the morning to ask me how to get that one in World 5.

Yes. I am a golden god. Bow down to me, King of the north, master of all that I survey. I am the lord of the dance.

Skate 2

The Year: 2009 The Feeling: There's your dinner!

Why I was so proud

Skate 2 wasn't supposed to this tough. It just wasn't. I had completed every single task available to me and this was the last thing on my list. Beat a bloody pro at a bloody game of 'Skate', a modified version of 'Horse' with kickflips.

It was a task so difficult that, eventually, EA Black Box had to patch it. It was, fundamentally broken. The CPU controlled player you were competing against could not be beat.

Unless you did one trick perfectly. Every single time.

To beat a cheat you sometimes have to cheat, or at least bend the rules. If you did some variation of a 540 flip trick, you could beat this CPU controlled bastard almost every time. It was cheap. It sucked, but it was literally the only way.

Victory. Sweet, cheap victory.

Super Meat Boy

The Year: 2008 The Feeling: Like an alien with five thumbs.

Why I was so proud

I was so proud because Super Meat Boy is hard. Haaaaaaaaaaaaard.

Super Meat Boy had levels you sauntered into and walked straight back out. 'No', you would say to yourself. 'This is physically impossible. My brain is small and fragile. My reaction time is sluggish and clumsy.'

But you did it anyway, because you were a Scandinavian God-King with reflexes to match. You were an evolved human being with thumbs grown from sacred genetic material express delivered from Pluto on some mysterious meteorite destined to deliver you from deviously intricate level design. God bless you Super Meat Boy.

Trials Evolution

The Year: 2012 The Feeling: Pure, unadulterated relief. Greatest feeling in the universe.

Why I was so proud

Words cannot describe. Completing every single track on Trials Evolution is an achievement in itself. Getting a gold medal on every track is also extremely, extremely difficult.

But imagine the scene: the final tournament. Every single extreme track, back to back; no respite. It's perhaps one of the most gruelling, arduous tasks in all of gaming. Completing the tournament is one thing, but to get a gold medal? It feels almost impossible. The player has to complete seven nerve-shredding, fiendish tracks in under 30 minutes, with only 153 fault allowed. Considering I know some pretty committed Trials players who need 200 faults to complete just one of these tracks — well, you understand just how difficult completing all seven back to back is.

The final track, The Way of the Ninja. It's not the most difficult — that honour belongs to Inferno III — but it's the longest of the seven by far. It's a test of endurance and I'm falling apart. I'm halfway through the track and I only have 10 faults remaining. I'll never get this close again. If I fail now I will throw my controller, my 360 and — if I can lift it — my 46 inch plasma over my balcony into the swimming pool below.

The stakes are high. My hands are sweating. Physically shaking. I've played this track before, but I'm crumbling to pieces. I have to pause the game. I literally have to pause the game. I inhale slowly, count to five. Exhale. One... two... three... four... five...

Almost there. 149 faults. Oh god. I hate this part. It's simple, but I've fallen off here before. If I lose momentum now, I'll screw it all up I just know it.

Accelerate. Lean back. Shift the weight forward. Jump. Bump three times. Maintain balance. Bump. Bump. Bump.

Finish the rest of the track. Two faults remaining. Put the controller down. Stare at the screen. Breathe. Take in the enormity of this personal achievement. This achievement that feels so trivial.


I did it.

Now check out the five games I'm horribly embarrassed I haven't finished!


    With you on Super Meat Boy, 100%ing (or 206%, or whatever they call it) that game is my proudest gaming moment in recent years. I'm one of the "pretty committed Trials players who need 200 faults to complete just one of these tracks", so I haven't actually finished Trials in they way you have, but I'm working my way through the platinum medals on Trials Evo and each one comes with its own massive sense of achievement.

    The other big deal I remember from the past was unlocking all the cheats in Goldeneye on N64. I beat the last couple of challenges because I had chicken pox (I was 19, and you get it bad at that age), and didn't have the consciousness to even get nervous!

      Yeah the Goldeneye thing was super tough. As was going through the entire thing in 00 Agent mode.

      I couldn't beat the last few levels of Goldeneye 64. Tried for a loooong time. Was just too shit.

        I tells ya, do it under the influence of some horrible disease. Or, failing that, some kind of sedative.

          This along with alchohol has the opposite effect. I'm just not cut out for shooteners. Give me a niiiiice, slooooow turn-based RPG and I'll do it ;)

        Took me so long to get through Goldeneye "Control" may have shaved some years off my life from stress, Natalya types too slow :/. But 'twas a fine day when I finally defeated it. (wish I never traded my cartridge)

          Control is where I gave up. I remember Natalya finishing typing and then I died anyway...

            Yep I gave up at the same spot. I tried so many different combinations with the C4 you leave as well =/

        Back in those days (pre internet) with Goldeneye, it literally took us a YEAR to complete everything, to 100% it. We bought magazines, we bought books on it, we scrounged up every single bit of info we could. We drew maps, we conducted test speedruns, everything...

        No other game since has held our attention as a group (3 of us), no game has had us plan, plot and conspire like that... there was definitely SOMETHING about that game...

          Totally agree with u there, I remember I even called one of those 1900 numbers and spent 10 minutes listening to a guy flicking through a guide trying to work out what I was talking about. Good old days of word of mouth and magazines, I remember people at school asked me heaps about it and I'd actually remember like exactly which floor tiles to walk across to reach the golden gun on Egyptian. Although lack of internet also bred a lot of fake stories, people could make up any old crap. But some of my fondest gaming moments have been online with friends so It's all a bit of a double edged blade really.

      Yes control was a PITA. I had quite a bit more difficulty with aztec and with having Doctor Doak spawn in the correct location to score the cheat unlock. I had also committed the button combo for invincibility to memory for multiplayer games...

    I've completed 5 out of 6 levels on Super Hexagon and that's probably my proudest achievement.

    Although I'm pretty chuffed at my 120 stars in Mario 64, and my Dark Souls playthrough.

      I could only get 119 stars in Mario 64... I kept failing the 100 coin's in Tick Tock Clock >:(

        I've got 150(?) out of 160(?) stars in Super Mario 64 DS. the remaining ones are all hidden castle stars and I just have no idea.

      Go on, you can do Hyper Hexagonest level. It took me most of 2012, but I got there in the last week of December. 35-ish seconds was my best for months. Then got to 45 seconds, and past 60 within a week. Super Hexagon is definitely my most proud finish of recent times.

      I also had 120 stars in Mario 64!

        Pish posh, Siglemic can do that in under 2 hours, several times a day.

    Dark Souls - did my first playthrough without ever using a summon. partially because I wanted the experience for myself, partially because the whole online system seemed too baffling for me to even comprehend.
    Trials HD - Gold/Platinum on most bar the extreme tracks...those I was just happy to be able to complete (and beat my friends).
    Ninja Gaiden 2 (NES) - Also balls out difficult, but I was only a tike as well, so double points for me.
    Guitar Hero 2 - Expert difficulty. Because Free Bird.

    Last edited 18/02/13 2:17 pm

      Yep, Guitar Hero 2 for me as well. Expert. Free Bird. No mistakes.

        No mistakes?! For me the accomplishment was just finishing the song on Expert!

    My most proud games for completing are the games I've 100% completed.

    - Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask (getting the Fierce Deity Mask was so OP)
    - GTA: Vice City 100% complete (could hire 2 guy's once you reached 100%, which was cool)

    (There are others I've 100% complete, but these two are my favourite)

    Now I dont feel so bad about leaving Skate 2 unfinished, I had no idea it wasnt just me...

      That part was near impossible.

        Na. My Skate 2 is locked at 95% trophies because of the online challenges. You could have 4 guys do it, but one guy keeps missing and you all fail. UUUUGGGHHH

    A lot less older game than I would have guessed.

    I haven't been really excited about completing a game since the PSone era...

    I was missing one bonus coin in Diddy's Kong Quest. One. I knew which level. In web woods when you become the spiser. I could never find it.

      The ones in there were tricky. There were two secrets in the area where you were the spider that required you to wait for a Cannon Kremling to shoot a cannonball, then chase the cannonball backwards through the level until it hit a wall and created a hole you can crawl into.

      The one you are missing, I'm guessing, is when you are moving across a large gap using your web platforms. You reach a cannon dude and he fires off a couple of fast cannonballs, then a really slow one. You then need to follow that slow cannon ball all the way back across the gap using your web platforms until it hits the wall on the other side.

      Last edited 18/02/13 3:03 pm

        Well, 15 years too late, but thanks anyway :)

          It's never too late :)

          Now you can go back and get that missing coin! There's an extra level + boss battle in the game that's available to access once you have it.

            I played the extra level and beat that boss by use of codes. Just threw in the one for all the coins.

            I had also used my coins on one door played the level then reset (without saving) and used my coins on the other lvel beforehand. :)

            I do have an emulator for it, unfortunatly in my youth I was forced to sell my SNES and all the games to get a 64 :(

            And yeah, I do still play, just not to the extent I once did :)

    I was quite proud of defeating Emerald and ruby weapon in Final Fantasy VII & Omega in FFVIII & the colourful circle thing in 9.

    I did everything in Final Fantasy X to open up that final hidden boss in the calm lands, the only way I ever beat him was Yojimbo popping in and one-shotting him.

    Best gil I ever spent.

    Ultima I
    Ultima III
    Ultima IV
    Ultima V

    Feeling on completing: I am teh old school, and Ultima 2 is dumb anyway.

    Haha maan I would be so proud if I finished Super Meat Boy. I rage quit after about 30 minutes of playing :P

    My proudest would be getting 5 stars on all the Guitar Hero III songs on Expert. Raining Blood took me years to do.

      Ergh. I beat the devil on hard, and most of the expert levels with 3 stars. That was enough for me.

      Incredible. I was proud enough just to BEAT everything on expert (and that I beat Lou "properly", not through using the easy-out at the start of the song). I spent ages and ages and ages just trying to get through TTFAF, and to this day I've still only gotten to the end the one time, *just*, with a three-star effort.

    I remember that Skate 2 mission. I never knew it was broken though.

    Battletoads: Kid me had no idea that 20 years later this would still be worth bragging rights. I have permanent tenure as a hardcore gamer. I quit on Demon's Souls but that's OK because I BEAT BATTLETOADS.

    Final Fantasy VI: Because it was a truly epic scale game that deserves to be finished by everyone, one of the greatest gaming experiences of all time, and I'm proud to have played it through.

    Deus Ex (the original): See FFVI.

    Dragon Age 2: For some reason this was the first game I bothered to platinum on PS3 (probably because it was so easy to platinum). Definitely falls under "stupidly proud" even though I liked it more than most people did.

    Deus Ex Human Revolution: The Missing Link DLC: Two words- "Factory Zero". I basically never, ever bother with these kinds of gimmick playthroughs, I play how I want, but I made an exception and did this one (and, for kicks, also got "Apex Predator" for taking out the final boss without alerting him). No shooting, no powers, no problem. If for no other reason to convince myself that I can still do these things when I really want to.

      I call bullshit. ain't ANYONE EVER beat battletoads :P
      that stupid bike level was just plain horrible.

        Nah, it's easy if you catch the warp through to the surfing level. The real horrible part is when you miss it and then have to make it through to the end, only to get your arse handed to you by the boss THEN HAVE TO GO THROUGH THE WHOLE THING ALL OVER AGAIN.

        I hate the snake pit more than the turbo bikes.

        I had a cartride with a built in code that gave me max lives and health by pressing up down up down, start. Me and my friend spent every second weekend for years playing that game........EVEN WITH CHEATS I COULD NEVER DO IT, AAAAAH. We mastered the bike level, if you warped u went to the snake level and we managed that but then that #@$*@# snow level, as if it wasn't hard enough, so they decided to throw in a whole new depth of pain, slippery floors and spikes everywhere, oh and don't forget creatures throwing snowballs at you, lots of that too, oh and if you didn't warp on the bike level you got to go to the fire level which I think may actually be hell pixelated, the choice was death by fire or Ice. Oh, i forgot about the surfing level, that was amazing, it was between all those hellish levels and was so much fun and not very hard, me and my mate would usually spent an hour or two on that level intentionally dying so we could keep surfing (I had cheat cartridge so lives were not a problem). Anyway back to the point @Arky if you really beat that CONGRATULATIONS!!!!! you're my hero. But if you're lying.... ooooooooh :/

      The real hard achievement in DE:HR is "Foxiest of the Hounds".

      I finished the entire game without taking anyone down, alerted maybe one guy over the course of the entire game Zeke Sanders in that apartment later on since you need to get through a door and you cant without him going alarmed and still didn't get it.

      Didn't lose any hacks, didn't alert any cameras. Screw that achieve.

        Lol, exactly the same. I wasn't even sure I had an alert until I finished the game. So many hours wasted...

        Yeah, that's why I don't bother with that kind of achievement. At least with Dishonored you know on a mission by mission basis whether you messed up and need to retry (not that I tried it with Dishonored either). I played a mostly stealth and a mostly non-lethal game with Deus Ex HR but there are moments where you just want a change of pace (or where the game is just made for you to go bananas- the drop takedown through the warehouse roof in the port area where they have three guards congegrate right underneath a place you can break the skylight is one example) and I'd hate to lose those and spend extra hours being boring and stealthy and then discover I was seen without realising it at some point in the game and didn't even get the trophy.

        Because it's only a long DLC and not the whole game, and whether or not I failed was 100% within my control, "Factory Zero" was just in a sweet spot where I felt it would be fun to go for it.

          I dont know... I swore like a sailor at dishonoured, because my statistics were perfect. And I still didn't get my no kill no alert achieve. There's a mission at the pub where you can be seen by weepers and I must've been seen there, but it doesnt show up in the stat screens. So stupid. Waste of my time. Even then.. I've heard that even if you replay sections from that menu, to get the achieve it needs to be one consecutive game. Pretty silly.

            It's Granny Rags in the Sewers. The whole section was broken, even if you just knocked her out. They've patched it now, but it's too little too late for way too many people.

              Could have been. But I'm pretty sure I didnt choke her. I just stopped time grabbed her key and blinked out of the room.
              Either way. It's in the past. Just annoying hahah.
              Pretty silly to have a whole side section of the game break stuff. I read about people just not doing it in a perfect run.

          Yeah I liked Factory Zero. Also this was on like my third DE:HR playthrough, I did a pretty lethal run through the first time then non-lethal on hardest difficulty for the second.

    Most recently it would be finishing everything in rayman origins with the exception of a few of the speed medals. My son cheered when I beat the zombie chick at the end of day of the dead :D
    Finally defeating capra demon and great lord sif was the greatest feeling of accomplishment in a game I have ever felt!

    That talk of the smug and the lack of help with Monkey Island reminded me of a similar thing I've been doing with games lately.

    I find that often, things actually get easier for you the more you play and unlock. Eg in RE Revelations, playing through Raid Mode. You earn points from playing, which you can then use to buy things in the store. Things like expanded slots for more ammo and health pickups. I felt like having more and more ammo available to me just watered down the challenge, so I said nup. Not buying any of these. I'm playing for proper. Also didn't go online with it at all, because it cleared the challenges just as if you did it on your own, except you had help to do it and it was a billion times easier. So lame.

    HotD Overkill was similar. The shotgun, with its extremely wide range of impact, seemed to make things incredibly easy. So I just never bought the thing, and completed the entire game with the handguns (and no cursor, because this is meant to be a light gun game dammit). I felt pretty proud that I'd managed to shoot all those golden brains and unlock everything through actual accuracy and stuff. To the point where I still don't have the final bonus unlocked, because that requires buying everything which includes the shotgun and I don't want to destroy my "proof".

    When I was younger there were bits of certain games my parents couldn't pass and I could, so small victory for me when I passed Syphon Filter and Apocalypse! (please tell me someone remembers Apocalypse? I only know like a couple of people who remember this one but it was awesome, like a crazy Fifth Element rip off with Bruce Willis' likeness haha)

      Apocalypse was cool. It also had a very unique control system that utilised the Dual Shock perfectly IMO. More shooter type games should have used the same.

      Last edited 18/02/13 10:54 pm

    - Finishing Battletoads in Battlemaniacs on the SNES was a big achievement for me, because it was damn hard! Simply finishing the game wasn't enough for me though so I kept going at it until I could finish it without losing a single life. Yeah, I'm crazy, but I did it.

    - Finishing Donkey Kong Country 101% in under an hour was a huge deal for me too.

    - Finishing Mortal Kombat 2 on a single credit. Kintaro was a bitch.

    - I will never forget the first time I finished Shadow of the Beast on my Atari Lynx. That game was tough. Again like with most things back then I continued to plug away at it until I could finish it without dying.

    - Beating Guitar Hero 3 on Hard mode. Stupidly, The Devil (the final boss) was actually easier to beat on Expert than he was on Hard. I was pulling my hair out trying to beat him on Hard mode and when I finally nailed him I literally cheered myself. I was quite proud of that.

      MK2 arcade machine on one coin :D took me years to finish it with only 1 credit.

        Yep, MK2 arcade original all the way. I still play it on an emulator now and then, and I can still beat it on a single credit. I've still got it.

          i pull it out for my SNES every few months and do the same myself, yet another of my useless in real life skills :P

      The Devil (the final boss) was actually easier to beat on Expert than he was on Hard.
      Did you fire the whammy thing at him on that fast strum he has at the start (on Expert, that is)? Because if you did, it totally doesn't count :P

        Haha yeah. That might be "cheap", but it works. That trick didn't work on hard mode though as he didn't have enough notes in that section to knock him out.

        The most annoying thing about that boss battle though was that you needed to play for the best part of 2 minutes before you started getting the attacks, so whenever you retried it you needed to play the first 2 minutes of the song again and again and not actually be able to do anything to him.

    Beating every level as 00 Agent in Goldeneye and getting that bloody Invincible cheat.

    Getting the rank of Supreme Allied Commander in Star Wars Rogue Squadron - platinum on every level.

    Completed with Brother:
    Unlocking Tick Tock (the clock guy) in Diddy Kong Racing. Had to beat each time trial ghost which unlocked an insanely almost impossible ghost you also had to beat.

    Unlocking foot battles in Lylat Wars/Star Fox 64. I think you had to get gold on every level.

    F-Zero GX 100% completion, was an incredibly satisfying thing to have finally done.

      Congrats!!! Unfortunately I was denied this achievement by Story Event 7 - 'The F-Zero Grand Prix' on very hard, best result I could manage was 3rd. Black Shadow or Blood Falcon were so cheap, even if you managed to take them out early another character would become uber for the rest of the race.

      Holy crap I forgot I even did that. Pretty sure I actually jumped up and punched the air when I finally got the last chapter on Very Hard.

      High fives all round :P

    Battletoads when I was a youngling has always been my greatest triumph.
    DMC3 on Dante must Die mode with 100% completion and SSS ranking on all missions.
    GTA3 back when I was 12 or so and it just came out.
    Beating the snes version of MK3 with the chosen one, Sub Zero
    Completing the nuzlocke challenge in pokemon silver after losing all but my starter to Red on mt silver.

    Did you "beat" Braid, or BEAT Braid? I'm judging from the way that it made you feel warm and fuzzy rather than outraged and murderous that you probably didn't do the nonsense with the hidden stars and the vastly less emotionally engaging "real" ending?

    Pool of radiance
    All stars - super Mario sunshine
    Doing my first W-H-O -+ beating Davros -Dr who pinball
    Indiana Jones - Fate of Atlantis (no help)

    Nothing super hard but merely the feeling of - f yeah! Good times.

      I couldn't even do the start of Fate of Atlantis without help - twice! Point and Clicks could be so frustrating. You could spend hours looking at the solution and not even seeing it, because it blended in so well

        What you described is the best solution in the game. Toward the end - the answer is literally all around you! You just had to see it! - I was sick with chickenpox and finished it while I was sick @batguy

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