Collecting trophies in games

Last week Ravanel made a post about the trophy she got from beating a raid boss and some of the loot she got out of it. (Or at least that is the impression I got. Sorry, I don't play SWTOR so I might have completely misread it!) At tthe end she asked readers if they showed off their trophies too or special mounts they earned. So I thought about making a post about my trophies collecting habits in different games. I think this can be an interesting topic as different people have a tendency to collect different things in-games where that makes sense. Perhaps it will be more clear what I mean during the post.

It all started with a sword...

Back in Morrowind there was a sword called Umbra that had a pretty infamous story about being made to trap souls and her creator being executed for creating such an evil item. The sword was also known to be very picky about its owners. So far, not anything all that original. What I think stuck in my mind is that in Morrowind it was held by an orc  wearing a very neat set of armor and who called himself Umbra too.

If you talk to him he tells that he basically lived a very intense life of combat but at that point he was just tired of it all and wanted to die. Since this is an orc we are talking about he obviously wanted to die in combat, which the player can accept or not (You can read the whole dialog here). It was a very tough fight but very worth it for getting Umbra. Since then I sort of started getting in the habit of trying to get Umbra with every one of my characters, regardless if they would use it or not. It would just be a memento of an NPC I was fascinated with.

Umbra, the orc in Morrowind

Later on I started to really  get into modding Morrowind and one of the things I fell in love with were player houses that had mannequins, display cases for weapons and bookshelves for books. From that point on it became an habit of mine to collect weapons and armor that had unique stories, names or were just part of something special for me. I also started collecting books but, in a typical feudal lord fashion, I never read most of them. They were there just to show off.

It even spilled to other games where it doesn't make as much sense. For example, in Dragon Age: Origins my chest at the Grey Warden's Keep always ends up full of weapons and armor sets that will most likely never be used but I still keep them because they have interesting names and stories attached to them.

Collecting In MMOS

In MMOs I rarely collect things. Mostly due to inventory woes and not many games providing something compelling to collect to begin with. The big exception has been Everquest 2. It is almost a  game that goes out of its way to enable collecting addiction. There are Lore & Legend quests where you have to collect body parts of different monsters to study them that reward a book and a trophy weapon to put in your house. There are tons of books that can be read and place inside the player's house or guild hall. There are the shinies, little shiny orbs strewn around the world, that once completed give some XP and some times give an appearance gear or a house item too. It is common for events to provide unique items too. And of course, a lot of the raid bosses drop a trophy that can be placed in your guild hall. Here is the one I built for my tiny guild, Deus Ex Arcana:

Deus Ex Arcana raid trophy display

It is very simple trophy showcase but I like it. It kinda reminds me of a museum exhibition which was my goal when I was building it.

So, that is my collection. I will echo Ravanel's question and ask: Do you have a trophy hall? What kind of items do you collect?

4 thoughts on “Collecting trophies in games

  1. Ravanel Griffon

    Hi Rakuno,

    I wanted to comment earlier because this post made my day. I'm always super happy when you're posting something again! I guess I'm just a slowpoke this time... :$

    As I already told you earlier, I never really got into Morrowind, so I never ran into that orc. But I remember running into one with a similar death wish both in Oblivion and Skyrim! (I don't think I managed to beat him, he's so hard.) So maybe they kept him as a kind of inside joke. Now I wonder if those other orcs also drop Umbra!

    I love your trophy showcase. You really pulled the museum thing off. 🙂

    The wall portraits in SWTOR are, although convenient, less charming in a way. Your Everquest ones remind me more of the LOTRO trophies, that often involved a physical piece of the killed boss as well (yuck, if you think of it - let's not).

    Hugs,
    Rav

    Reply
    1. Rakuno

      Hello Ravanel,

      Don't feel bad. If my posts make you happy then your comments make me supper happy! 🙂

      Besides you are still commenting much faster than I am making posts. >_<

      Hm. I don't remember a death-wishing orc in Oblivion. On the other hand I never played it enough. It is just a game I didn't like. But in Skyrim it is a complete different situation than from Morrowind. In Skyrim it is just a random encounter just to give some variety and insight into orc culture. On Morrowind it was an unique NPC, with an unique backstory (for the game anyway) with an unique "reward" (If you count killing someone to take their sword as a reward, that is).

      Thanks. I have no idea where the inspiration came from. I think it might have been some games I played that just sort of put that kind of imagery in my head and I tried to pull it off in Everquest 2.

      Hm. I don't know if the portraits in SWOTOR are less charming. I personally liked the screenshot of your portraits gallery. It reminds me of a real world art exhibition. 🙂

      Yeah, getting a physical piece of some creature as a trophy is just gross. But there are other sorts of trophies too, like I mentioned in the post. The ones for Lore & Legend are all weapons (although you do have to get body parts of the creatures in question and examine them to complete the related quests....). Unfortunately I don't have any good screenshot of those right now. Oh, there are also some paintings. Some of those are crafted, some looted and some you get from Legends of Norrath (think of it as Everquest 2's electronict version of Magic the Gathering and you are not too far off). Those are too many to put into a screenshot though.

      The point is there is if you are into showing off your accomplishments in a game in some sort of virtual museum Everquest 2 has a lot of ways to do that. It can be very fun if you are into that sort of thing.

      Reply
  2. Tish~

    I have only played a couple of games with housing/trophy display sorts of things, but I find that I am a terrible completionist about it. In Everquest 2, of course, I am a shiny maniac. Not necessarily for the house or wearable "showoff" items but more for the bragging rights. When Kiddo was 3 and 4 years old, he'd watch me play and he could spot that little golden plume from a mile away!
    Another thing that Everquest 2 gives us is the Heritage quest items. Since I played Everquest 1 for so many years, a lot of those stories and items have a personal special meaning to me. I suspect my friends are too kind to tell me they're tired of my "400 years ago when I was a different character, I had this WILD adventure to get this same item" stories!
    The other game I have a collect-'em-all mindset about is Animal Crossing. We've had several versions and I always end up tearing out my hair and seeking online trading communities to get that one. last. furniture that will SURELY make my life complete and my virtual house into the perfect home.

    Reply
    1. Rakuno

      I can sort of understand the completionist part. In games where there is some collectible thing it can drive me nuts if I can't complete it and there is an achievement for it and/or a huge benefit in-game. Fortunately I don't have that problem with shinies in Everquest 2 for  the most part otherwise I would not be able to play the game at all. There are just too many of them!

      And you are right about the Heritage Quests! I forgot about them. For those who don't know what they are, Heritage Quests are chain quests that deal with recovering items that were very popular and hard to get in Everquest 1. The questline usually deal with what happened to the item after Everquest 1 while you try to get it back. They tend to have nice stats for its level too and most of them can be turned into a house item which is pretty nice way to use them after you outgrow them. 🙂

      Also, I will never get tired of yours and poSychel "400 years ago" stories. 🙂

      I heard a lot about Animal Crossing for Sabine but unfortunately I haven't been able to play one yet. Now that I have an Wii U I will hopefully be able to finally play one game in the series as it seems pretty fun! I just hope it doesn't trigger my completionist side like it does for you though. :p

      Reply

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