Completion Percentages: Why Some Of Us Hate Them

Completion percentages make some of us hate them. Why? Find out below.

LEGO City Undercover, as fun as it is, puts that damnable number right in your face every time you head back to the police station. That number tells you that as much as you’ve done, you still have something else to do before the game acknowledges you’ve beaten it. In the game mentioned above, protagonist Frank Honey seems to feel the same way, as what looks like a billboard measuring your progress puts your completion percentage right there for everyone to see.

Wow, it’s hard enough just finishing some games, never mind having to bow to the game’s nagging reminder that you’re not done yet. Almost every game has that completion percentage indicator somewhere, and some of them throw it in your face every time you pause. No wonder Frank Honey calls it the “compuper”. It’s a reminder that no matter how well you did, it just isn’t enough. There is still one steaming cup of coffee you haven’t found yet, and the police department’s computer isn’t going to let that go.

Of course. That steaming cup of coffee you didn’t find is going to unleash an evil the likes of which Arkham Asylum has never seen. Let’s break out that old bat signal and put out an APB. That hot cup of steaming coffee needs to be found.

Yes, that was sarcasm.

Tomb Raider, Borderlands 2, Skyrim, Prototype, Assassin’s Creed… so many videogames have that ungodly completion percentage to remind you that you still have hours of your life to pour into finding every single thing the developers decided to drop in there. In the case of Assassin’s Creed, the developers didn’t give it a real ending, so why bother?

Why does anyone care about completing a game to the hundredth percentage? If you’re a 30-something with a full time job and a significant other, where are you going to find time to meet that completion percentage? Before you know it, you’ve spent the month bored out of your mind by a game that you initially thought was fun, just to make that silly number reach 100 percent. Is it worth it? Most of the time, no, it isn’t.

These games with completion percentages need to have some kind of practical reward for reaching that inane goal, or most of us are just going to find it an irrelevant waste of time.

How do you feel about completion percentages?