"Check this out." Trevor shows us the Achievements tab on his Quake Wars Player Stats screen. "These are the Shields, these are the Stars, and down here are the Wreaths, for people who are really uber."
He explains how each medal has a number of achievements, and how your achievements determine your rank. "I've already got the Life Support Shield, but I'm trying for the Life Support Star, which is why I was a Medic that whole game, even though you guys never waited for me to rez you, and you never called for med packs, and I had to use the shotgun to work on my Small Arms Star, which is why those clan guys were powning us. If I'd had an assault rifle..."
"What do you get for these?" the new guy asks, considering the wall of medals on the screen, all but four of which are greyed out. Trevor has a long way to go.
"What do you mean?"
"What do you get?"
"You mean besides the actual award?"
"Why would you get something? Weren't you ever in high school? Didn't you ever get, like, I don't know, a pole-vaulting trophy or something?"
"A pole-vaulting trophy?"
"I don't know, whatever they give out to kids who do that sort of stuff. I was in chess club. We got a trophy for state finals third runner up one year, but we all had to share it. I don't really know how it works for everyone else. Like those letters on a coat, or horseback riding ribbons and stuff. My point is, those people didn't get their coat letter or their ribbon and then ask 'What do I get for this?' It's the thing in itself. That's just how it works."
"It's like your gamerscore on Xbox Live, then, right?"
"But it's just for one game? That doesn't make much sense."
"Man, you guys are so casual."
"Steam has something like this, right?"
"Yeah, that reminds me. I've been neglecting my Team Fortress 2 achievements because I'm so close to getting my Master level Swarm Missile Badge in Warhawk."
"Warhawk? What's that?"
"Warhawk. It's for the Playstation 3. Not many people know about that game. It's, like, the same ten guys online every time I play. Sad, really. They must not have any other systems. But I'm really close to dinging up my Swarm Missile Badge. After that, I'm probably going to start working on Team Fortress 2."
"I like Team Fortress 2," Mike says. Which doesn't mean anything. Mike likes every game.