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Video Game / Achievement Unlocked

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"Don't worry, metagaming is all that matters."
— Slogan for Achievement Unlocked

Achievement Unlocked is a web game by jmtb02, that could be considered a metagame about metagaming. It is the Spin-Off/sequel to Elephant Rave. The game features an elephant in a room, and myriad achievements ranging from simple things like moving left and right, to more complex things like dying a certain amount of times, or visiting certain points in the room in a certain order. You can earn 13 achievements by starting up the game and standing still.

The only real point to the game is to get all of the achievements — there isn't really any story or plot to speak of. The game ends once you get all of the achievements.

Two subsequent sequels were made. The first of them, Achievement Unlocked 2 pokes fun at the concept of Downloadable Content. It also has a Time Trial challenge and a multiplayer mode. Achievement Unlocked 3 extends the amount of achivements to 400, includes a ladder system, and adds an Excuse Plot where you collect pellets for the Hamster King.note 

The same elephant stars in This Is the Only Level and its sequels, as well as Elephant Rave HD and Elephant Rave sLoWdOwN Remix, Run Elephant Run, Obey The Game! and Elephant Quest.

The trilogy, alongside the other games starring the elephant, would eventually be remastered and made into a Compilation Rerelease entitled The Elephant Collection, which released on Steam on 6 November 2023.

If you're here because you were actually looking for information regarding video game achievements, you're looking for Cosmetic Award and/or Achievement System.

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  • 100% Completion: The entire point of this game.
  • Achievement Mockery: Some achievements are obtained by dying.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • In Achievement Unlocked 2, you only need to paint 100 tiles per level to get an achievement, rather than having to paint every tile like in the first game.
    • The Elephant Collection version of the second game lets you save your progress and resume later, with any achievements you unlocked before getting re-unlocked, rather than having to play the whole thing in one go. The first game doesn't get that courtesy, though it's short enough not to be necessary.
  • Bragging Rights Reward: Pretty much the whole game, but especially the "Too Much Free Time" achievement, which you get for getting every other achievement in the game.
  • Character Customisation: The first game lets you change the elephant's color, while the third lets you change its headwear and clothes.
  • Death as Game Mechanic: Several of the achievements require the elephant to die a lot or in specific ways.
  • Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: Not only does your elephant respawn immediately when killed, but some achievements are unlocked by dying often or in certain ways, making death more beneficial than anything.
  • Deconstruction Game: Of the Achievement system.
  • Double Jump: Attempting to do so in the second game is an achievement in itself. It's really available in the third game, and trying to triple-jump gets an achievement.
  • Effortless Achievement: Unsurprisingly, given the nature of the game, you get showered by these, especially early on.
  • Fat Bastard: King Hamster is very egotistical and bosses the player around to collect food pellets for him. He's also so large that he remains stuck in a tube for pretty much the whole game.
  • Gotta Catch Them All: This is pretty much the whole point of the game, to get all the achievements. You even get an achievement for getting an achievement!
  • Guide Dang It!: One of the achievements is for visiting the hint page.
    • Several achievements are for changing the elephant's colour, but you're not told how to do this.
    • "Can't Follow Instructions" in the sequel. You right-click, and click "Don't Click Here."
    • The craziest of them? Type the game's URL in another tab while you're still playing it, and you'll gain access to the Hot Coffee screen. Move about in that mini-stage, and stand onto the coffee cup to get more achievements. But wait, there's more: in that secret screen, there's another secret screen, named Cold Coffee. It's found by falling off the side of the Hot Coffee screen. Standing on top the Cold Coffee mug also gives you an achievement. It's pretty safe to say that AU2 also pokes fun at the very notion of Guide Dang It!.
      • Later builds of the game, however, change the name of the achievement to "two browser windows", giving you more of an idea of what you're supposed to do.
    • A few of these are averted in the remastered versions in The Elephant Collection. The hint pages are gone, replaced with a button that just says "Click!", and the Hot Coffee screen is accessed via a much more obvious method (since the old one isn't possible via Steam).
  • It's All Upstairs From Here: In the second game, finishing the game involves jumping to the top of the Cataclysm level.
  • It's Up to You: It falls on you, the player, to collect all the achievements. Any other characters that appear don't really help you gain the aformentioned achievements.
  • Jackass in a Lion Skin: The Hamster King in Achievement Unlocked 3 is not a hamster at all, but is really a Guinea pig pretending to be a hamster.
  • Konami Code: Required to get an achievement: "Too Much Contra"
  • The Magic Touch: Touching blocks (floors/walls/ceilings) and spikes usually makes them change color. There are several achievements for painting specific amounts of them.
  • Mood Whiplash: The Cataclysm (or Roof) in the second game.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: The description of the second game.
    This is a game about you.

    Yes you, the player: A lowly blue elephant In a World… that has no defining purpose. But you will create a purpose, and that purpose is to do the unthinkable. The extraordinary. The tasks that few have thought to achieve. The world you struggle in pushes back with tremendously nonsensical squares and launchers... coins that pay for things you would only imagine should have been free to begin with. Spikes will be hellbent in causing your demise. This will not be easy. And while the road of purposelessness will be overbearing you will succeed. You know why?

    Because it's your destiny.

    Welcome to metagaming hell.

    Welcome to Achievement Unlocked 2.
    • Also, the ending:
      I have triumphed.

      I have collected 250 individual achievements.

      I was never obligated to finish the achievements given to me. So much time has elapsed... I could have baked a pizza, went for a run, helped my sister move her apartment across town... but instead I sat here.

      I SAT.

      Here I sat, pushing the arrow keys, moving a little 20 pixel elephant around a screen doing fairly random tasks. First I was getting rewarded for no particular reason; soon after, I started to earn achievements on my own accord. By the end, I became the Master. I won.

      I WON.

      I played Row Row Row Your Boat. I ran in a giant hamster wheel. I even pooped a pastry. In the end, it all made sense. I needed to achieve. I needed to win. And even though I got there with a bit of stress, time-wasting, and lack of dignity, I achieved what few have ever done.


      Congratulations player. YOU HAVE DONE IT.

      Now go play outside or help your sister move or something...
  • Nonstandard Game Over: In the second game, going upstairs to finish without all of the achievements.
  • Only Smart People May Pass:
    • The achievements "(2*125)+3" and "3*(30/(15-13))" are quite simple for anyone able to do mid-level mathematics, or for those who have the ability to obtain and use a calculator.
    • In the second game there are some achievements where you need to know how to play the piano.
  • Paradiegetic Gameplay: In Achievement Unlocked 2, one set of achievements require access to a special coffee-related area, only able to be reached by opening two windows of the game simultaneously, with the second one leading you to the coffee area. Averted in the remastered version, where that method doesn't work anymore.
  • Pooping Food: In the sequels, the elephant can poop pastries, and eat them too.
  • Press X to Die: In the second game, the "Panic" button kills your elephant. There are several achievements for doing interesting things with this effect and it rescues you from the occasional stuck-in-a-wall-forever bug.
  • Shout-Out: A number of the achievements.
  • Solve the Soup Cans: "My Favourite Spot" stands out in particular.
  • Spikes of Doom: And they even change color when touched.
  • Stupidity Is the Only Option: Some of the achievements require you to jump into spiked pits. Repeatedly.
  • Take That, Audience!: The games have some snark towards the kind of player who would devote themselves towards gaining absolute 100% completion of a time-wasting online game where you win by doing pretty mundane things. Such as the kind of player who is playing Achievement Unlocked.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential:
    • Some of the achievements require you to kill the poor elephant you're controlling a certain number of times.
    • Achievement Unlocked 3 asks the elephant, for some achievements, to launch hamsters from a hamster gun into a wall of spikes or into a torch that will set them on fire.
  • Waiting Puzzle: Supposedly, you get the "Don't move a muscle" achievement by standing still. However, the way the game is coded, the achievement unlocks the exact instant the game starts, even if you're moving.
  • Welcome to the Real World: The first sequel's top level is supposed to be the real world (called the Cataclysm), with dramatic music playing when you enter it. The background is a picture of a city (from the picture, it's probably Chicago) at twilight. You even get an achievement if you kill yourself in the Cataclysm.

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