I know i have spent some time talking about collectibles before on my blog. I felt that today I would dive a little deeper to make some distinctions between the types of collectibles a game typically has and give a way to characterize them. In my opinion there are four types of collectibles that you can potentially find in a videogame. For the recod I consider a collectible to simply be something that you can collect in a game. Now let’s get started. The first type is a collectible that has importance to the story. This type is essential for progression barring any speedrunning level skips that may exist to bypass them. Basically the game is coded to not allow you to progress without it. This type can be further divided in the type of collectible that you can use and the type you can’t use. To elaborate, sometimes there are items you need to collect to fight the final boss, but you can’t actually use them until that fight. However, there are some instance where you can use the collectibles from story progression to become stronger without being tied to the final boss scenario. As a example, in many of the more recent Sonic games the Chaos Emeralds are only used to fight in the final boss encounter, but serve no purpose in any of the other levels. However, in the later Genesis Sonic games you could use them once you collected them to become Super Sonic and he wasn’t necessary for the final boss encounter. This type of collectible is important for story reasons and typically is more important to the story rather than the gameplay, although like I’ve said there can be some overlap.
The second type of collectible are optional powerups. These can also be converted into two different types. These two types are temporary powerups and permanent powerups. Like their names suggest one of them offer the player who interacts with the collectible a stat boost temporarily and the other gives a permanent increase. These are meant to either help get through difficult areas or help the player grow to face harder challenges later down the line. These can come in many different forms such as armor or weaponry, but their purpose is the same. They exist to help increase your stats and give you a way to even the odds. The third type is not as noteworthy as the second type, but it is still important nonetheless. This type is the type of collectible that you can use as normal consumables or potentially craft into such items. Sometimes you even get the ability to craft these types into consumables of the second type. These are typically essential to getting through any type of game because without them you are left with no options except acouple of attacks with high risk and low health levels that are hopefully not accompanied by a beeping sound. The three types I have listed so far are the most essential parts of gameplay. However, I said there are four types. So, what could the fourth one be? You might have already guessed, but the fourth type is just there to be collected.
You see the fourth type doesn’t neccesarily have any importance to the story or the gameplay. It may have something that ties into things related to the story, but it may not have any noticable effect on the story itself. An example of this might be how some games have bestiaries that you can fill out by encountering certain enemies and gaining information on them. Hollow Knight would fall under this category. This type could also grant you fun rewards for gameplay after collecting enough of them, but they are in no way required for playing the game. A classic example of this would be the Skulltula tokens that are used to lift the Skulltula curse in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time which help unlock certain useful items to help beat the game. However, they are not required collectables so you can still beat the game without them. Typically this type doesn’t add anything substantial to the game. Usually the only purpose it serves for people is to fulfill their curiosity. Potentially there can also be achievements associated with these types of collectibles. These achievements tend to have a range of difficulties going from pretty simple to incredibly hard. Typically they are only worth it if you don’t have to go out of your way to do them, if they give you something cool, or if you just want a crazy challenge. Do remember that these are never required to collect if you want to enjoy the game. Don’t collect them unless you are either trying to get something or trying to prove something. That’s all I got. What? I can’t go on rambles and random tangents every time. They lose their meaning that way. So, see you next time and have a good night.