Killing 800 rats in Guild Wars 2

, | Games

During one of the storyline missions in Guild Wars 2 — these will vary based on your answers to multiple choice questions when you make your character — I had to investigate some strange goings on in the sewers of Lion’s Arch, the game’s main city. The mission takes place in an instance of the sewers scripted to involve some things I’ll leave you to discover on your own. But as soon as you walk in, you see a steady stream of rats coming out of the sewers. The idea is that there’s something up ahead that they want no part of.

So I did the mission and then ended up back at the entrance, watching the rats stream out. I’m not proud of what happened next.

After the jump, a one-man Vamanos Pest Control

Guild Wars 2 has an achievement system that, like many achievement systems, is mostly consequence free. When you tooltip over a character’s name, you can see how many achievement points that player has earned. These come from completing story missions, but also from exploration, combat, character development, collections, and so forth. In other words, playing the game. They’re not tied to a single character, so you can get a sense for how much someone has played the game by looking at his score.

One of the categories is slayer, which tracks how many of each type of enemy you’ve killed and rewards achievements for 10, 100, 500, and 1000 kills. For instance, I can see in here that I’ve killed far more ghosts than anything else and I’ve even maxxed out the “ghost buster” achievement. Another achievement in the slayer category is for killing helpless little critters that are basically used as decoration. Knowing this, I’ve occasionally killed rabbits and raccoons while gadding about the world. Not with any sense of dedication. I never actually hunted them. It was just an occasional idle, ‘oh, look, a raccoon for the achievement, blam, 3000 points of damage’. Which, frankly, is a little icky. But it wouldn’t be the first time I’ve done something OOC for an achievement.

Since rats aren’t nearly as endearing as rabbits or raccoons, I made a point to kill a few here at the entrance to the sewers. Then I checked my numbers on the achievement. Just under 200. Blam, blam, blam and there I was at 200. I might as well get a few more while I’m here. The next threshold is for 500 kills, so let’s get halfway there.

But at 250 kills, why stop there? 300 is a much more even number. At which point, I might as well go to 400. At which point, I might as well get 500 for the achievement. So there I was, Sunday afternoon, listening to the radio, hitting the attack key over and over and over to spew flame into a constant stream of rats instead of actually playing Guild Wars 2. Wait, hold on. Is this actually playing Guild Wars 2? It feels like it might be.

I finally hit 500 helpless critters killed, which earns me three of the four achievement tiers. The final tier is for 1000 kills, and there’s no way I’m going to sit in these sewers to kill 500 rats. But it won’t hurt to just get a few more. Just a few. After all, there won’t be many opportunities like this where the critters march at me in an endless stream.

As you might have guessed, I sat in that sewer until I’d maxxed out the achievement category. That contributed 16 points to my overall achievement point total of 540. Suffice to say, I’ve done far worse in far worse games. But best of all, I can leave the cuter critters like rabbits and raccoons in peace.

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