Former DICE Trophy Designer Says Trophies Are Bad For Gaming

Fredrik Thylander, who previously worked on achievements for Mirror's Edge, thinks they are a waste of time.

Like any other industry, gaming has changed a lot in the past few decades or so. Instead of playing pixelated 2D games, we now enjoy titles with hyper-realistic visuals and gameplay mimicking real life. But, some things have stayed the same in the industry and one of those is achievements/trophies in video games. 

Since the 90s, the mechanic has persisted in gaming and plays a big role in expanding video games beyond their basic storyline. However, a former Mirror’s Edge achievement designer doesn’t think that is the case. Fredrik Thylander, a lead gameplay designer at Ubisoft, thinks trophies have been bad for gaming and actually narrows them down. 


Major Takeaways

  • Mirror’s Edge achievement designer thinks trophies are bad for gaming.
  • Fredrik Thylander, who currently works on The Division at Ubisoft, think they narrow games down.
  • He thinks they eat up resources and games would be much better without them.

Fredrik Thylander shared his thoughts on Twitter with the world. He labeled this as an “unpopular opinion,” and we kind of have to agree it is unusual. But what gives it weight is that it comes from a former trophy/achievement designer. 

Thylander says that the mechanic has been a negative impact on video games. He goes on to say that trophies disrupt the flow of the game and diverts attention away from the main storyline. So, achievements don’t make the game better at all according to the Ubisoft designer.

Continuing to expand on his opinion, Fredrik Thylander says they eat up the resources at their disposal. Instead of making the actual game better, money and time go into making achievements for the title.

Hence, the Ubisoft man basically thinks instead of increasing the length of games by adding trophies, we should just make them longer and remove the mechanic. 

Even though the last point isn’t nonsensical, fans are criticizing the lead gameplay designer. Users in the Twitter thread called him out and reminded him of the work the current Ubisoft Massive employee did on Mirror’s Edge. Besides that, the Quotes to like ratio tells you all you need to know about the fan reaction. 

Fredrik Thylander worked on the achievements for the 2008 Mirror’s Edge game. Players consider those trophies an essential part of why the game was good. This is because the actual game was pretty short and restrictive, but the achievements added another layer of exploration to it. 

Hence, fans have not been buying the whole “trophies restrict games” idea from the game designer. Thylander currently works at Ubisoft Massive and works on The Division franchise as a lead gameplay designer. Previously, he was an achievement designer at DICE, and that is where he worked on Mirror’s Edge. 

Fans also brought up the Ubisoft part as concerning, as it isn’t exciting to hear such views from an important dev in the company. All in all, fans don’t believe that trophies restrict games or use up necessary resources. Achievements give players an incentive to explore the brilliantly crafted gaming world and spend more time in their favorite games. 

One fan bought up Vampire Survivors as an example and how they implore you to try out different things. Even though Thylander’s last point holds weight, you can’t make a game much better by using the resources going into trophies.

Instead, achievements make the final product much more thorough and worth exploring via their addition. 

Whatever your opinion on this is, it’s safe to say many in the Twitter thread didn’t agree with the Ubisoft Lead Designer. Tell us your view in the comments below. 

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Fredrik Thylander

Ahmed Mansoor


Ahmed Mansoor is a News Writer who has a deep passion for single-player adventure games. He loves to keep tabs on the gaming and technology industries and loves to break stories that interest his audience. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and several years of experience writing for games. Experience: 3+ Years || Education: Bachelor's in Journalism || Written 600+ News Stories.

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