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I've got a simulation game where the player works through a series of missions/levels.

The player also earns in-level badges as he works through.

But, if the player fails a mission (and has to restart it), should the badges still be awarded? Or should badges only be retained on successfully completing the parent mission?

Your thoughts are welcome.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I've seen both approaches, and I can't say some must be preffered. I guess it should be done based on how you feel about it. \$\endgroup\$ – Petr Abdulin Jul 29 '14 at 9:09
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I have been trying to find any source online that states it explicitly with no luck. If you award players with achievements as soon as the criteria is unlocked, then you can play around with the actual criteria to make for more or less flexible achievements.

For instance, is not the same "Burn 10 enemies to death" to "Complete the level burning 10 enemies to death". Also other achievements, in nature, require players to complete the whole mission, such as "Complete the level without getting hit".

In any case bear in mind that achievement hunters will take the most efficient way to get an achievement. For the burning enemies example, in the first case they will leave the level as soon as they meet their objective, which of course is much less challenging that having to complete the entire level, but at the same time is less frustrating.

Just to give you an idea, here are two examples that work different ways.

I have played some platformer and FPS games where secrets which are scattered through levels are awarded as soon as found, independently of finishing the level or not. This is pretty handy as you can play the entire level just once for completion, and then replay it several times to find the hidden secrets. This makes less boring and frustrating having to play the same missions again and again, as you only explore parts of the level you didn't before.

On the other hand, Starcraft II has level specific achievements that always require you to complete the level. This makes the system more challenging as you need to complete the level AND meet a certain criteria for the achievement, but is also more rewarding as probably it would be too easy otherwise.

In any case I recommend you to read this achievement guide by Greg from Kongregate, and decide which model suits better your game (replaying levels again and again will be fun or will feel like a dull chore?).

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  • \$\begingroup\$ thanks for the considered, and thorough answer. The achievements link seems to be of particular value. \$\endgroup\$ – ianmayo Jul 30 '14 at 15:46
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Sometimes players only rerun a mission because of the achievements, even if they just do a suicide mission.

You could just award them, in real-time, even if the mission is not completed in the end.

Or you could, for the first run, need to complete the mission first, and only after repeating the mission you could win the achievements without needing to complete it.

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