How to contribute if you're not an achievement creator

meleu By meleu.


It’s known that achievement creation has a steep learning curve. Even for those computer nerds who decided to face such challenge, there’s also another thing to take into consideration: it’s a very time consuming activity.

Good news! Even if you don’t want to learn how to create achievements nor have enough freetime to spend on this activity, there are many other ways you can contribute with the RetroAchievements project.

Here’s a list of ways to contribute. I tried to list them in a “degree of involvement” order.

Suggest cool achievements/challenges

If you know a game very well, you probably can have some cool ideas of challenges for the game. Post your ideas on the forum topic related to the game.

In this very issue there’s an article with some guidance about how to research a game to get ideas for an interesting achievement set. Although the article is in the DevTip its contents is targeted at any user (not only achievement creators).

Feedback is always welcome

Give feedback in the forums about what you like or dislike about the achievements sets. Be specific and leave details.

When providing feedback be sure to be respectful and constructive. Concrete suggestions with improvements is always preferable.

Pure rants and interactions with an antagonistic tone is definitely not welcome.

Report broken achievements

If an achievement triggered at a wrong time or didn’t trigger at all, please report it. We know that many users love free points, but please, even if an achievement triggered at a wrong time, report it!

Another important situation that needs to be reported is a cheevo triggering by using some kind of cheat in the game (e.g. stage select code), or by loading a saved game.

Check in our FAQ how to report broken achievements

Join community events

Yeah, just joining a community gaming event may not be so obviously understood as a contribution, but it’s indeed an useful one. Because with many eyes upon an achievement set, people are more prone to submit tickets (specially the ones with the “triggering at a wrong time” issue).

Check the Current Events article to get in touch about them.

Report issues in achievement’s titles / descriptions

In our discord server, there’s a channel named #writing-requests where you can suggest fixes for things like:

  • Grammar/Spelling mistakes
  • Plain Achievement Titles
  • Incorrect Descriptions
  • Non-English achievement descriptions.

If you don’t want to use our discord server, posting your suggestions on the game’s forum topics can also work.

Write content for RANews

If you have an idea for an article to be published in the RANews, just go to the RAdmin profile page and send us a message. Anything retrogaming related is welcome.

Help with the documentation

If you have a github account and know the basics of Markdown, you can help with the documentation. Fixing typos, grammar or inaccurate information.

Take a look at this page to know the details: Contributing with the docs.

Make badges for achievements

If you like to play with graphics you can create some art for the achievements badges or icons for the games. Using the screenshot feature from the emulator itself can help with this, and then you can edit to make something cool.

If this idea excites you, I recommend joining our discord server and ask for the @art-helper role. You’ll then have access to a channel where other artists interact and help each other in this front.

In the Art Updates article you can see how these guys are doing an awesome job to improve the images used for badges and game icons.

You can see some guidelines and useful info about Badge and Icon Creation in the docs.

Become a play-tester

This one requires a little more effort, and to recognize such effort you can even win a badge in your Site Awards wall.

A play-tester is a person who wants to play a game someone is creating achievements for and look for bugs.

You’ll need to fill a spreadsheet reporting the problems you find, like achievements not triggering when they should or triggering at a wrong time.

If you want to contribute on this front, be sure to join our discord server and ask for the @play-tester role. People will guide you there and show you the ropes.