The Accomplishments You'll Never Get Credit For!
I was looking through my Safety Deposit Box one day, amused by the sight of thousands and thousands of Mysterious Orchids that I've collected over the years. Though I'll never win any accolades, avatars or trophies for my collection, I still find great satisfaction in viewing it every week! The Mysterious Orchid is, to me, the most beautiful item ever created by the TNT artists, and several years after the Atlas of the Ancients plot in 2009, I'm still obsessed with this prize!
I also have a collection of 20 Crystal Neggs from the 2014 Festival of Neggs, and though they're no longer usable, I hoard them in my SDB and gaze lovingly at their sparkling, animated beauty. I'm loath to discard such gorgeous items, which is a testament to the creativity of the TNT artists. For now, I jealously hoard these Crystal Neggs, though I'll never get credit for owning or using them!
Inspired by the idea of having accomplishments that we will never get credit for, I decided to wander over to the Neoboards and ask my fellow players what THEIR projects are, and why they decided to blaze on with them even if they'll never get avatars or trophies for completing them. What are their goals that are purely personal? I got many interesting and unique replies!
The biggest accomplishment that people have, and will never get credit for, is the creation of pet stories! Many players write stories for their pets and post them on their pet lookups. The cool part is that all of their pet stories are interwoven with each other, so you can click on a pet's name within a story and be transported to another pet lookup with its own story. Since the players will never win trophies or awards for these finely crafted stories, I thought their neurotic need to have stories for all of their pets was really cool! Many players admitted that it took months and months to write these stories, which astonished me. It's probably the most popular activity on Neopets that doesn't involve trophies or avatars (or any kind of recognition, really).
The second biggest accomplishment was, of course, the pets themselves! People will never get credit for finally accomplishing their pet families, but they don't mind! They're thrilled enough to finally get their 4 Royal pets, or their 4 Maraquan pets. They're even thrilled when their pets don't match each other, such as one person I met who has a Royalgirl Peophin, a Maraquan JubJub, a Striped Kacheek, and a Christmas Zafara. I thought this was rather charming! (One player wistfully wished that TNT would give an avatar for having 4 pets of the same color, such as having 4 Pastel pets. I'm including this random suggestion in this article because I think it's a great idea!)
The third biggest accomplishment was similar to my own, where people collected thousands and thousands of their favorite items. I thought it was amusing that the newbies always collected Omelettes. I used to do the same when I was a newbie! I wonder why Omelettes have such a hold on our hearts! Other people collected more expensive items, and their collections were so diverse and numerous that I can't even list them here. People truly like what they like, be it windows, lollypops, or hair brushes!
Customization was a huge topic on my threads, with people declaring that even though they'll never enter their pets in the Customization Spotlight, they avidly continue to dress their pets in elaborate costumes and wearables. I'm the same way, and I had to smile! I find great delight in dressing up my pets, and even though they'll never garner me any trophies, avatars or awards, I still change my pets' customizations once a week for fun. It's delightful and entertaining, and it definitely sparks the imagination! (My lab rat, who I'm zapping for stats, changes species and color frequently. It's so cool to be able to dress up a Chocolate Xweetok one day, and a Wraith Bori later on!)
One of my personal goals is to zap pets with the Secret Laboratory Ray, turn them into interesting new colors, and give them away to deserving new owners. I recently reached a milestone -- 100 pets given away -- and am currently zapping pet #102. I was gratified to know that I wasn't the only zapper-and-pounder on the Neoboards! Plenty of people told me that they, too, zapped and gave away painted pets on a daily basis, and I thought that was pretty neat! We'll never win any accolades for our generosity, yet for many of us, this is our favorite hobby on the site!
One player admitted that she has a petpage all about herself, complete with her pet goals, images of the pets she has, her contest wins, and more. She'll never win a Site Spotlight trophy for her petpage, but she doesn't care! She just thinks it's awesome to view the petpage once a week, thanking her lucky stars that she's accomplished so many of her goals, and looking forward to creating more goals. I have a similar petpage, one that lists my Poetry Contest wins, my pets, the avatars I've yet to accomplish, etc.. My petpage is a purely personal endeavor, and I'll never win any awards for it, but it's so satisfying to keep track of everything I've accomplished in 9 years!
I think a popular goal on the Neoboards is to be, well, popular! I'm happy when people recognize me as "that HCer (Help Chatter) who's always asking for our opinions." I'd rather be known as someone who's fun and playful than someone who's sarcastic and mean. I'll never get trophies or avatars for people holding me in high esteem, but I don't care! It's good to be loved by your fellow players!
One player, who I think is pretty rare, had the goal of doing one Random Act Of Kindness every day, whether it's complimenting someone's pet, complimenting someone's account, or thanking someone for being kind, generous and helpful. RAOKs are a popular thing on the Neoboards, and though the phrase "RAOK" is used in common parlance in real life, I first learned about "RAOK" on Neopets. What lovely players there are on this site!
I have pets that are being zapped on 3 different accounts. As a consequence, I have a lot of Paint Brush clothes from their frequent color changes. My goal is to give away all of the Paint Brush clothes, and have literally no clothes left in my Closets. A lot of players had the same goal, and declared that they've been giving away clothes for years and years. Having an empty Closet is kind of a unique accomplishment, since most people want MORE clothes and not less, but that's how some of us think, I guess! Good luck to all of the players who are trying to give away their Paint Brush clothes! (Transferring pets takes quite a while, doesn't it? I hope TNT comes up with a better way for us to transfer our PB clothes!)
The Battledomers that I spoke to made the obvious observation that having a terrific battle pet is their biggest accomplishment. Though it's possible to participate in plots and site events with just a moderately trained pet, these players are absolutely devoted to raising their pets' stats to the highest possible levels. Having a pet with only 1,000 Hit Points garnered me the top trophy in the Obelisk War, but I've seen pets with 10,000 Hit Points and more, and their owners are never going to stop training them. I thought this was fascinating!
I've gotten published in the Editorial 23 times, and my overall goal is 50! I'm pretty stoked that TNT thought my questions were keen, interesting and insightful. Right now, I have a list of 14 questions that I submit every week, over and over again. Though they often get rejected, there have been times where I sent a question for 5 continuous weeks, only to get it published after all. So I never give up hope! I just keep on submitting my questions and cross my fingers that they'll be posted on the Editorial page. It's also pretty cool to know that sometimes, TNT has to make up new rules as a result of my questions. It feels great to be impactful and pivotal!
Pet names was an interesting subject that someone brought up. People often strive to own amazing pet names, such as "Sparkle" and "Love," and though they'll never earn awards for having such beautifully named pets, they assiduously scour the Pound Neoboard for one-word pets that are up for trade. One person admitted that she's trying to trade her well-named unconverted Faerie Wocky for a cool one-word name, and I gasped with a teensy bit of horror. I love all unconverted pets, especially my own unconverted Faerie Pteri, so the idea of trading them for one-word pets isn't very appealing to me. Yet this is what many players do!
One player mentioned something that I totally agreed with. She organized her items juuuust so. Her main account's SDB held only Petpets. Her side account's SDB held Advent Calendar items. Her other side account's SDB held only books. As someone who only keeps Neocash items she's trying to trade in her SDB, and items that she's hoping will inflate in the Trading Post, I agreed that having well organized accounts is something we all do, yet will never get credit for!
Guilds are a huge part of Neopian life, though to date, there are no trophies or avatars associated with being a member of a Guild. You don't get an avatar for joining a Guild, and you don't get a trophy for being a Guild member for 5 years. Being part of a lovely, welcoming and brilliant Guild is definitely a personal accomplishment that is important to many players, and I was glad to learn that Guilds are such a positive and bright reason for logging in every day!
The most popular idea concerning Galleries was that people collect the items that they'd want in real life. For instance, my own obsession with Mysterious Orchids, or someone else's obsession with Hiding From Clowns Blankets. One person that I met collects baseball caps that she wishes she could buy in real life. We collect these items in our Galleries, knowing that we'll never win the Gallery Spotlight, but we're adamant nonetheless about collecting as many awesome and entertaining items as possible. We're literally thousands strong! Nearly everyone uses their Gallery, and only a tiny fraction of us enter the Spotlight. That means 99% of us use our Gallery for fun, and not for trophies. How thought-provoking!
I was intrigued by one person's declaration that she continues to decorate her classic Neohome, rather than transferring everything over to Neohome version 2. She has a 52-room home, a veritable mansion, and has no intention of stopping her outmoded hobby. She'll never win any trophies for her Neohome, since only version 2 is capable of winning the Neohome Spotlight, but she continues to decorate her old-fashioned home with passion and zeal. I thought her devotion was quite inspiring! Especially when I saw her inventive creations, like computers cobbled together from dishes, or televisions cobbled together from pillows. She made me wish that classic Neohomes could win the Spotlight again!
Several players said that they make graphics for other players, such as goal counters and "adoptables" (images of pets or items). One person admitted that making user lookups was once her main reason for staying with the site, though she abandoned this hobby later on because it was taking up too much of her time. Creating beautiful images for other people to use will never garner anyone credit, except the adoration of other players, yet these artistic players continue to churn out lovely and exceptional graphics every week!
Hoarders all raised their virtual hands, and declared that they'll never get credit for having over 10,000 unique items in their SDBs. I didn't realize there were so many hoarders on this site! I was positively agape when people turned one of my threads into a contest, posting the total number of items in their SDBs (55,000! 23,122! 34,600!). Besides anticipation of the next Charity Corner event, I'm not sure why hoarders even exist. Are they waiting for their items to inflate in value? Why not sell everything and have a tidy sum in their Bank accounts? Are they just too lazy to price their Shops? (My own SDB is completely devoted to storing all the Neocash items I'm trying to trade. So everything else goes into my Shop. Yep, I'm neurotic like that.)
One player admitted that after achieving the "MSPP" avatar, she no longer collects avatars. Being lent the MSPP card was her biggest accomplishment on the site, and she only has 242 avatars. She'll never win any trophies with her paltry avatar count, but she doesn't care! She accomplished the "MSPP" avatar, she's satisfied, and she's totally done with avatar collecting!
One player admitted that she gave away all of her wealth (56 million NP) with the intention of quitting the site, but then came back and continued to play. Though she has virtually no NP left, and no items in her SDB, she doesn't mind! She's glad that she was able to help other players achieve their goals, and I thought her generosity was quite an accomplishment! Other players posted similar stories about how they tried to quit Neopets, giving away all 20 of their pets, only to come back and enjoy the site once more. When I asked them if they regretted giving away their pets, a surprising number of people said no, admitting that giving their pets to deserving new owners was their personal accomplishment. They sounded so lovely and unselfish that I'm glad they decided to stay after all! Neopia needs more players like these!
One person said that her biggest accomplishment was starting over after having quit years before. Right now, she has no wealth, no painted pets, and no trophies or avatars, but she's still really proud of her account! She has a beautiful user lookup, a single Blue Kacheek, and many Neofriends that she contacts weekly. She doesn't do dailies, and she has no intention of painting her pet. She admitted that her main reason for logging in every day is the social aspect of the Neoboards, and not the accumulation of wealth. Her happiness was so infectious that I wished I could start over, too! She found such joy in the simplest of things, like giving her Kacheek some toys to play with, or putting cheap wearables on it. What a delightfully innocent way of enjoying the site, free of greed and competition!
One player, a Help Chat regular who I admire greatly, admitted that her greatest accomplishment is reporting spammers on the Neoboards. When players post obviously forbidden topics (such as bad words or taboo subjects), this player is always the first to report them to TNT. She says she finds great satisfaction in seeing the spammers disappear from the Neoboards, since the TNT moderators are always watching, and are always ready to silence and warn bad players. I think this is a cool accomplishment! I wish the Neoboards were always full of such conscientious players!
One player literally made me nod in agreement. She declared that her biggest accomplishment on the site was keeping her account safe from hackers, scammers, charlatans and more. She changes her password and PIN every week, she records all of her essential information (like her list of Neofriends, her collection of pets, the contents of her SDB) frequently, and she often takes screenies of her account every time she achieves something important or new, like an avatar or game trophy. Her account is a hefty 144 months old, and the beauty of her unconverted pets made me gape. I'm glad she has kept her account safe for so many years, and I was glad to meet such a cool veteran player!
So these were all of the myriad accomplishments that me and my fellow players have! It was absolutely delightful to chat with everyone on the Neoboards, and I had fun picking their brains. It's a testament to the dynamic nature of the site that we could come up with literally dozens of ways of enjoying this site, despite never getting avatars or trophies for our efforts. I doubt that even TNT realized how creative and innovative the players would be, and I'm sure they're always impressed by our unique projects! (Having 4 different Desert-colored pets is a purely personal goal, yet that is what we strive for! How interesting!)
Thanks for reading this article, everyone! Stay tuned for future articles from yours truly, and have an amazing week!
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I swing my bow over my shoulder and let my breathing subside from nervous to normal. I fan my gloved hand out and stretch my arms. I never miss a shot. So what happened? My Papa, that’s what.