The highly popular browser game, Cookie Clicker, has finally hit Steam this September and at the time of writing, it has an astonishingly high 98% rate of approval, giving it an "Overwhelmingly Positive" score from more than 5,000 reviews.
Released in 2013 by French programmer Julien "Orteil" Thiennot, the game has quickly gathered a massive fan base due to its addictive and fun gameplay followed by regular updates throughout years.
After eight years as a browser game, Orteil released an Android version in 2020, and from 1st September of this year, the game is available on Steam and it includes several brand new updates.
Asides from being addictive, the game is known for its dark humour, especially present in the names of upgrades, achievements and mechanics.
With the game now being on Steam, Orteil wanted to make an interesting twist in regard to achievements' names, by trying something no one had ever done before.
What's the maximum name length for Steam Achievements?
found on the achievements page for cookie clicker: pic.twitter.com/4tM8olngO2— dog given (@bitchrate) September 6, 2021
If you are a regular Steam gamer, you have probably seen sorts of Steam achievements. Most of them are "normal" and somewhat lazy puns, some can be hidden, some incredibly hard, and for some you will need five years to complete.
But when it comes to their names, they mostly consist of one or two words, and on rare occasions, you will find a short sentence here and there.
It seems that developers were mostly fine with these short names, as nobody actually tried to put a long Steam achievement name, not until Orteil decided to do it for the Cookie Clicker Steam release.
And when we say "long", we really mean it.
The one achievement which requires players to bake 10 sextillion cookies per second (yes, you read that right) has a name (if we could call it that) that's over 600 characters long.
In fact, it even has a short Wikipedia excerpt about Adolphus W. Green, the co-founder of the National Biscuit Company, now known as Nabisco.
"There's really no hard limit to how long these achievement names can be and to be quite honest I'm rather curious to see how far we can go. Adolphus W. Green (1844–1917) started as the Principal of the Groton School in 1864. By 1865, he became second assistant librarian at the New York Mercantile Library; from 1867 to 1869, he was promoted to full librarian. From 1869 to 1873, he worked for Evarts, Southmayd & Choate, a law firm co-founded by William M. Evarts, Charles Ferdinand Southmayd and Joseph Hodges Choate. He was admitted to the New York State Bar Association in 1873. Anyway, how's your day been?"
This, of course, far exceeds the space in pop-up windows, tabs, sections, and others areas designed for achievements, created with short names in mind, as apparently no one at Valve thought that anyone would actually use achievements in this way.
It's a bit comical, sure, but in an essence, Steam achievements can often be a part of the product, an extension of the developer's creativity, and seeing developers using them in unique ways, instead of treating them as something to fill in just for the sake of it, is surely a great way to gain attention, just like the aforementioned "Go Outside" achievement for The Stanley Parable, which requires players to not play Stanley Parable for face years, and which first players could have unlocked starting from 17th October 2018, that being the fifth anniversary of the game.
As far as we know, this Cookie Clicker achievement has the longest name that has ever existed among Steam achievements, and it will be interesting to see if Valve will decide to change the naming rules and give fewer available characters for achievements going forward because if it becomes popular among other developers, it will most surely create a mess on Steam, which simply isn't designed to display such long achievement names.
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