Video games often give players a moral quandry to obsess over before they make the hopefully right choice. Should I really be giving helpless ladies to a lunatic in Dishonored who probably runs his own sexual assault island? Should I really be killing all these Russian in an airport in Call of Duty? Good questions, with the morality conundrum being thrown out of the window the very second that you realise that an achievement is at stake.
Some games gave you the option to be history’s greatest villain, while others actually rewarded you for being what the office calls a “Darryn”. They probably mean that in an endearing way. So here we go, here’s a bunch of times where being bad didn’t just feel good, it was actually worth the effort.
Grand Theft Auto V – By the Book
America! Land of the brave, home of the free and naturally under constant danger from a world that is hellbent on ripping the brilliance out of the star-spangled banner. Who will protect ol’ red, white and blue in America’s darkest hour? None other than the finest heroes that the nation has to offer: A washed-up bank robber, a gangbanger with ambition and a violent sociopath with various substance abuse problems rattling around his deranged skull.
An unholy trinity, given the tools to get information out of a very confused man who happens to be strapped to a chair that’s right next to several tools of painful information retrieval. Yes sir, Grand Theft Auto V gave you the chance to flex your inner sadist, in a prolonged game of torture where players could wield a variety of fun little toys to force a confession out of their hostage potential terrorist.
Your reward for doing so? A whole bunch of trophies and achievements, as each escalation of the torture game resulted in your screen lighting up like a broken slot machine.
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2 – Sith Kicker
There’s a lot that Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2 got wrong when it was first released, the most egregious of which was the fact that this game promised a galaxy of fun and instead delivered a mere dwarf star of content upon release. To its credit, Starkiller’s return did live up to some of the hype after launch when it released the perfect piece of DLC.
In this standalone chapter, players could go to the Forest Moon of Endor (Which is where Chewbacca lives despite it not making any sense), and finally give those damn Ewoks the treatment that they deserved for ruining Return of the Jedi. Where one player might see a midget dressed in discarded dog fur however, others see a cuddly little fella that just wants to protect its home.
Bollocks to that, because while Starkiller could introduce Ewoks to the business end of his laser swords, he could also use them for a bit of footie practice, punting the furry freaks into the sky where they would never ever be seen again. Do that a couple of times, and the game would ding you some new points for kicking seven kinds of Sith out of the hated teddy bears.
Slime Rancher – You Monster
You’d be hard-pressed to find any game that makes farming as joyful as Slime Rancher, a cosmic sandbox where farming has evolved to incorporate the cutest of firearms into its agriculture. With a weaponised vacuum cleaner strapped to your back, it’s up to you to clean up the planet and plant some crops along the way, gathering the most adorable slime monsters and then becoming entranced by their can-do attitude.
Heck, your little planet even has its own form of poultry, a delightful space-chicken who you can tend to and nurture as part of your daily duties…or you can just incinerate their young. While Slime Rancher never forces you to build an incinerator and chuck space-chickies into it, the option isn’t just there but it’ll also briefly reward you for the chibi-carnage with a Steam achievement that spells out your success perfectly. At least it’s a finger-lickin’ good achievement.
Far Cry Primal – Tears of Shame
Ubisoft’s oddest spin-off in the Far Cry series (I still believe that Blood Dragon is a portent of our rad future), Far Cry Primal took the series way way back to the roots of humanity. Which basically translates to fewer Christian fundamentalists trying to convert you ahead of the looming apocalypse and more tying rocks to twigs because humanity’s devotion to destruction is our greatest trait.
Without motorcycles or shotguns, players needed some sort of edge to help them survive in the prehistoric wild and they got just that when they were gifted with the ability to tame wild animals. That sabretooth tiger that just tried to gnaw your face off? It’s just a big pussy cat once you give the furry fella some love. That made for some useful skills overall, or if you were a completely heartless bastard, a handy bag of resources that you could butcher when the urge struck you.
In a stunning display of betrayal, players could walk up to their trusty companions and kill them for some harvesting materials. That’s right, you could bash your animal pal’s skull in, rip its skin off and get a nice bag in return to store your freshly-minted achievement, the appropriately-titled “Tears of Shame”.
Red Dead Redemption – Dastardly
Let me paint you a picture: It’s the wild west, the hills are alive with the music of gunfire and there’s a frontier out there that is just begging to be explored. The land is home to various settlements, tribes and an entire ecosystem whose veins happen to be made from steel and iron. Nothing brought civilisation to the old west like the power of steam, and all through John Marston’s adventure players could occasionally spot a mighty locomotive speeding through that rough terrain.
Or they could be a proper dick, kidnap a damsel and tie her to the tracks while you stood back and twirled your moustache in delight, waiting for a train to turn the lady into giblets and throw you a bloody achievement for all your nefarious effort.
Assassin’s Creed – Enemy of the Poor
Fun fact: For somebody to have more money, someone else needs to have less. That’s how economics works! Back in the original Assassin’s Creed, players could easily swim in cash after completing a few contracts, which they could use on…stuff. Listen I can’t remember, it has been a long time since I played that game. What I do remember, is that Altair Last Name I Also Can’t Recall’s walkabout around the city would usually be derailed by beggars walking into your path and begging for some of your digital coin.
Normal folks would probably give some of their hard-earned blood money away, whereas not-so-nice people would ignore the poor and tell them to shove off. Proper bastards could shove those beggars out of their way, upping up the jackassery by actually going out of their way to hunt down the economically-deprived as if they were remaking Hard Target. Shoving 25 “harassers” would earn you not only a nice ding on your achievement score sheet, but also a seat in hell. Probably.
Friday the 13th: The Game – Chad is a Dick
Imagine you’re at a summer camp, it happens to be abandoned and you’re being chased around by a machete-happy immortal zombie homicidal maniac whose only fear is large bodies of water. Now imagine that same scenario, only I’m with you. How utterly f**ced would you be? Chances lean towards massively, on account of the fact that much like Chad in the game, I’d adopt an every man for himself approach and also leave everyone I knew and cared for to the mercy of Mama Voorhees’ darling boy as he went on a rampage.
If you were playing as Chad in Friday the 13th: The Game, you could do just that, as you grabbed a car, fixed it up and hightailed it out of Camp Crystal Lake while the rest of your pals all suffered a grisly demise at the rotting hands of Jason. Hey, it’s not so much being a dick, but survival of the Chaddiest.
Last Updated: May 22, 2019