Elastic Bands – not just for, erm, elastically banding things

I probably spent two of the longest hours of my life getting this achievement:


Now, Spider-man: Friend or Foe is not a bad game. Having said it’s not a good game either; to be honest it’s decidedly middle of the road. What dampens it even more is that bloody achievement. Level up all your characters – bloody whoop. Unless you’re really, really bad (and I do mean really, really bad) at this game there is no way you are going to be anywhere close to levelling all your characters up by the time you’ve finished it. So what does this mean? It means that you have to slog through the last level around about 10 times if you want all the points and quite frankly that level sucks big time – one long drawn out boss battle which sees you jumping around like a loon. It’s decidedly non-awesome.

So that got me thinking about what lengths we (ok, by we, I mean me) go to in order to get that little plink of satisfaction. I have mentioned previously that I spent something like 10 hours getting the 1000+ jigsaw achievement on Puzzle Arcade, but thought I’d go through my games list and see what I’ve put myself through to get points.

One of the worst, and also best (for ingenuity, not gameplay), achievements on my list comes from Superman. An atrocious game, I’ll get that out of the way right now, with one awful achievement – fly 10,000 miles. Seriously, you’re not going to do that during the course of a normal game. You’re really not. So, being the scorewhore I am, I employed the use of one of the lesser known gaming peripherals – an elastic band. Or, to be more precise, two.

With one band firmly wrapped around the left stick so our blue and red clad superhero flies in a circle, and the other holding down both the flying and boost buttons it’s time to go and do something else for a long time. Like sleep. Or wish you had another Xbox 360 to play on. It took a good 10 hours, I seem to remember. A longer time, incidentally, than it took me to find all 100 hidden kittens – sorry Van!


My first foray into the use of these postman’s friends as a gaming peripheral came while playing Super Mario 3. I remember there was a level that, for some reason, I seemed to think needed me to fly up somewhere while holding a koopa shell. As a youngster my finger co-ordination was not the finely-tuned thing it is today and I couldn’t manage to hold the shell and fly at the same time. What could I do? My frustration was beginning to build when the answer came to me, almost as if a voice had spoken from on high. The Gaming God, himself (or herself, whatever), had looked down on me and said “use an elastic band”.


Admittedly, it’s not my proudest gaming moment and, probably, were I to play through Super Mario 3 again I wouldn’t need an elastic band at all (due to the more refined fingering I am now capable of… erm, you know what I mean) but I think what it does show is that we gamers are good at is thinking outside the box.

And that can’t be bad.







8 responses to “Elastic Bands – not just for, erm, elastically banding things”

  1. waxc3 avatar

    if i dont respect the Achievement i dont try to get it all. like my own little secret FU! to the developer.
    most recent example : the Fallout 3 achieves for level 30 at good, neutral, and evil. screw that.

  2. Zoey avatar

    I agree with waxc3. I have dignity in my points collecting and there’s some stuff I just won’t do (which lets face it – it’s the reason I’m behind you on the scoreboard!). I also ignored the Fallout ones for good, neutral and evil as it’s completely pointless and people just cheat to get them. POINTLESS!

  3. Simes avatar

    Elastic bands are an excellent levelling tool in Final Fantasy X-2.

  4. waxc3 avatar

    i HAVE done things like leave the game running while i eat dinner and such for achievements like the 100 hour one in Vesperia, but i did NOT let Dipp stand in princedom in Beautiful Katamari for the time achieves.

    i did NOT do the rubber band trick in the flower stage in we love katamari but that was i think the first i had heard of it.
    saw some very creative methods of using occilating fans and such to keep the katamari rolling over days. lol.

    personally i dont care what people do to get their 1000 points (short of cheating). i understand the ocd of it all very well! thats why my score is way higher than all of my friends.

    i dont much care for those people with the 200,000+ gamerscore that bet a a game once and use the file on a jap, euro, and usa release to all of the sudden have 3000 gamer points from one game.

  5. Razgate avatar

    “more refined fingering”
    😀 LOL
    Love it.

  6. Zoey avatar

    I hear some games can also be helped with ice lolly sticks! FFVIII and Banjo Tooie are both help by this but I’ve not used it. Makes you wonder what else can be used!

  7. The Rook avatar
    The Rook

    Superman, elastic bands, flying achievement. *raises hand* Think I flew around 2000 miles by times I had finished and collected all the kittens so help was needed.

    I got the full 1000 for this but there was one achievement left for 0 points. I had to decide whether I was happy with 1000 points or did I want 100% achievements.

    Last achievement was for entering a cheat. Game was beat so I decided to go for it. Don’t really care about 0 point achievements anymore.

  8. Lorna avatar

    I left Viva Pinata running while on the totem screen so that the pop ups wouldn’t stop the game inorder to get the Longevity cheev or whatever it was. I was worried that fate may have the last laugh though and RROD my Xbox…

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