My 100 Rarest Steam Achievements

I’m not much of an “achievement whore” when it comes to gaming. I just try to enjoy the game and let the achievements come naturally, but I do enjoy looking at them later and seeing what percentage of other players were able to achieve the same feats. Not all the games I play are on Steam and some, understandably, disable achievements when mods are in use, but these are the fifty rarest Steam achievements I’ve been able to collect over the years. Feel free to share a few of your rarest achievements and the percentage of other players who have been able to match them.

  1. Grim Dawn: A Done Deal (0.4%)
    Gain the effects of all five of the Shattered Realm’s shrines
  2. Green Hell: Green Hell (0.5%)
    Finish the game on Green Hell difficulty level
  3. Frostpunk: Ultramarathon Hard (0.9%)
    Survive 100 days of Endurance mode on Hard or higher difficulty
  4. Frostpunk: Marathon Hard (1.2%)
    Survive 50 days of Endurance mode on Hard or higher difficulty
  5. Frospunk: Golden Path (1.4%)
    Finish the New Home scenario without passing severe laws and using harsh abilities
  6. Fallout: New Vegas: Artful Pocketer (1.8%)
    Pick 50 pockets
  7. Frostpunk: Ultramarathon Medium (1.9%)
    Survive 100 days of Endurance mode on Medium or higher difficulty
  8. Grim Dawn: A Mad Stash (1.9%)
    Raid Ivonda’s Hidden Stash
  9. Grim Dawn: I’m My Own Master (2.0%)
    Settle the score with the Aetherial that possessed you on Ultimate Difficulty
  10. Zombie Army Trilogy: You’re Going to Have to Work for Your Meal (2.2%)
    Reach at least Wave 10 in Horde Mode – Flood of Tears
  11. Alien: Isolation: Mercy or Prudence? (2.3%)
    Complete the game without killing humans
  12. Civilization V: God Is Great (2.3%)
    Construct 1,000 Temples, across any number of playthroughs
  13. Green Hell: I Made It (2.4%)
    Survive 10 days on King of the Jungle difficulty or higher
  14. Grim Dawn: Settled Debt (2.5%)
    Settle your debt with Riggs
  15. Grim Dawn: The Order’s Champion (2.7%)
    Slay Archon Barthollem in the name of the Order of Death’s Vigil on Ultimate Difficulty
  16. Grim Dawn: Banish the Night (2.8%)
    Slay Grand Magus Morgoneth in the Tomb of the Heretic
  17. Grim Dawn: Port Valbury Avenged (2.8%)
    Slay Overlord Van Aldritch in Port Valbury on Ultimate Difficulty
  18. Civilization V: Paul Bunyan (3.0%)
    Chop down 1,000 forest tiles, across any number of playthroughs
  19. Frostpunk: Iron Man (New Home) (3.0%)
    Finish the New Home scenario on Hard difficulty
  20. Grim Dawn: Shattered Conqueror (3.0%)
    Conquer the 25th Shard of the Shattered Realm
  21. Trine 2: Mosslight Marsh Collector (3.1%)
    Collect all experience pickups in Mosslight Marsh
  22. Frostpunk: Marathon Medium (3.2%)
    Survive 50 days of Endurance mode on Medium or higher difficulty
  23. Ori and the Blind Forest: Light Burst Master (3.2%)
    Kill 50 enemies with Light Burst
  24. Civilization V: Law of the Splintered Paddle (3.3%)
    Beat the game on any difficulty setting as Kamehameha
  25. Green Hell: Casted Far Away (3.3%)
    Find an unexpected friend
  26. Green Hell: Librarian (3.3%)
    Read 50 collectibles
  27. Grim Dawn: No Strings on Me (3.4%)
    Settle the score with the Aetherial that possessed you
  28. Grim Dawn: Mountain Slayer (3.4%)
    Slay Galakros, the Mountain in the Malmouth Sewers on Ultimate Difficulty
  29. Green Hell: Greedy (3.5%)
    Complete Story mode on any difficulty with gold sack in backpack
  30. Grim Dawn: The Bastion Conquered (3.5%)
    Slay Shar’Zul, Harbinger of Chaos in the Bastion of Chaos on Ultimate Difficulty
  31. Green Hell: I Don’t Need to Sleep (3.7%)
    Get 5 stacks of insomnia
  32. Grim Dawn: Remember Me? (3.8%)
    Slay Fleshshaper Krieg in the Fleshworks on Ultimate Difficulty
  33. Grim Dawn: Revered Champion (3.8%)
    Become Revered with 9 Factions
  34. Grim Dawn: Weed Killer (3.8%)
    Slay Sylvarria in the Undergrowth on Ultimate Difficulty
  35. Grim Dawn: Savior of Malmouth (3.8%)
    Complete the Ashes of Malmouth on Ultimate Difficulty
  36. Total War: Warhammer II: Settra Rules! (3.8%)
    Playing as Khemri, occupy all regions of Nehekhara within the Eye of the Vortex campaign
  37. Zombie Army Trilogy: Guts and Glory (3.8%)
    Reach at least Wave 10 with more gold medals than your companions
  38. Green Hell: Do You Want to Play with a Snowman? (3.9%)
    Find a snowman package in 3 different locations
  39. Grim Dawn: Revenge for the Fallen (3.9%)
    Slay Theodin Marcell, the Shaper of Flesh in the Sanctum of Flesh on Ultimate Difficulty
  40. Path of Exile: Behold My Army (3.9%)
    Have 60 Minions at the same time
  41. Zombie Army Trilogy: I’ll Teach Ya How to Shoot! (3.9%)
    Reach at least Wave 10 with the highest score in any Horde Mode map
  42. Grim Dawn: Shattered Explorer (4.0%)
    Conquer the 15th Shard of the Shattered Realm
  43. Grim Dawn: The Jewel in the Mud (4.0%)
    Reach Revered reputation with Barrowholm
  44. Grim Dawn: Gate Crasher (4.1%)
    Slay Bollag, Keeper of the Gates at the Malmouth Bridge on Ultimate Difficulty
  45. Civilization V: Land Baron (4.2%)
    Purchase 1,000 tiles, across any number of playthroughs
  46. Grim Dawn: Souls Supreme (4.3%)
    Absorb 8 stacks of Essence of the Shattered Realm in the Shattered Realm
  47. Grim Dawn: Grounding the Herald (4.3%)
    Slay the Herald of Destruction in the Immolation on Ultimate Difficulty
  48. Fallout: New Vegas: Globe Trotter (4.4%)
    Discover all snow globes
  49. Grim Dawn: An End to the Darkness (4.4%)
    Slay Ekket’Zul, Progenitor of Darkness at the Void’s Edge on Ultimate Difficulty
  50. Grim Dawn: Unequaled Slayer (4.5%)
    Eradicate 2,000 Heroic Monsters
  51. Grim Dawn: Nemesis More Like MEHmesis (4.6%)
    Slay Ten Nemesis monsters on Elite or Ultimate Difficulty
  52. Total War: Shogun 2: Oda Victory (4.7%)
    Win a campaign as the Oda clan
  53. Frostpunk: Vegetarian (4.8%)
    Having a choice, finish a scenario using only Hothouses
  54. Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor: No Power in Numbers (4.8%)
    Help a Captain survive a Recruitment Power Struggle, and then kill him and all his new recruits
  55. Bio Inc. Redemption: Reaper (4.9%)
    Complete all Death stages
  56. Frostpunk: Walk on the Grass (4.9%)
    Have a Garden of each size
  57. Grim Dawn: Celestial Touch (4.9%)
    Activate a Celestial Blessing
  58. Path of Exile: Traitor (4.9%)
    Help all three Bandit Lords
  59. Grim Dawn: Byscilla’s Schemes (5.0%)
    Bind the Spawn of Ateph to Byscilla’s will
  60. Grim Dawn: An Ocean of Blood (5.0%)
    Rid Cairn of 100,000 Monsters
  61. Grim Dawn: The End of Torment (5.0%)
    Slay Alkamos, Lord Executioner in the Steps of Torment on Ultimate Difficulty
  62. Smite: Bottoms Up (5.1%)
    As Bacchus, keep your Drunk-o-meter in smashed for Five minutes
  63. Grim Dawn: You’ve Got Guts (5.2%)
    Slay Gutworm in Smuggler’s Basin on Ultimate Difficulty
  64. Grim Dawn: Champion of the Crucible (5.2%)
    Complete the Crucible
  65. Frostpunk: Master Achivist (5.3%)
    Fill the Archives
  66. Frostpunk: Hyde Park Corner (5.3%)
    Have a Town Square of each size
  67. Green Hell: Making Progress (5.3%)
    Reach Max at any skill
  68. Fallout: New Vegas: The Courier Who Broke the Bank (5.4%)
    Get banned from all the Strip’s casinos
  69. Frostpunk: Negotiator (5.4%)
    Deal with the Londoners’ thievery peacefully
  70. Green Hell: Going Back Home (5.5%)
    Make tortoise soup in its shell
  71. Grim Dawn: Hero of the People (5.5%)
    Reach Revered reputation with the Malmouth Resistance
  72. Green Hell: Gotcha! (5.6%)
    Catch 9 aquatic animals
  73. Fallout: New Vegas: May My Hand Forget Its Skill (5.7%)
    Evacuate Zion
  74. Grim Dawn: Not Afraid of a Little Fire (5.7%)
    Slay the Herald of Flame in the Conflagration on Ultimate Difficulty
  75. Grim Dawn: Champion of Malmouth (5.7%)
    Complete the Ashes of Malmouth on Elite Difficulty
  76. Alien: Isolation: Mind Your Step (5.8%)
    Navigate Reactor Maintenance without dying
  77. Frostpunk: Unskilled Labour (5.8%)
    Finish any scenario without constructing Steam or Advanced buildings
  78. Grim Dawn: Shattering the Blade of Ch’thon (5.8%)
    Slay Salazar, Blade of Ch’thon in the Depraved Sanctuary on Ultimate Difficulty
  79. Green Hell: Just, Wait for Me… (5.9%)
    Finish the Story – “Good” Ending
  80. Grim Dawn: Follower of Uroboruuk (5.9%)
    Reach Revered reputation with the Order of Death’s Vigil
  81. Grim Dawn: Unstoppable (5.9%)
    Slay Six Nemesis monsters on Elite or Ultimate Difficulty
  82. Ori and the Blind Forest: Bash Master (5.9%)
    Bash off enemies 10 times in a row without touching the ground
  83. Trine 2: Secrets of the Deadly Dustland (5.9%)
    Find all secret chests in Deadly Dustland
  84. Grim Dawn: Feast of Souls (6.0%)
    Absorb 300 Shattered Souls in the Shattered Realm
  85. Grim Dawn: Savior of Cairn (6.0%)
    Complete the Game on Ultimate Difficulty
  86. Sniper Elite 4: Following Orders (6.0%)
    Complete All Secondary Objectives in the Main Campaign
  87. Civilization V: Better Red Than Dead (6.1%)
    Win a Conquest Victory using the Order Ideology
  88. Fallout: New Vegas: Safety Deposit Box (6.1%)
    Trap Father Elijah in the Sierra Madre’s Vault
  89. Green Hell: Keeper of the Flame (6.1%)
    Keep a single fire burning for over 5 days on Welcome to the Jungle difficulty or higher
  90. Green Hell: King of the Jungle (6.1%)
    Hunt a Rattlesnake, Jaguar, Puma, Caiman and 3 types of arachnids
  91. Grim Dawn: Korvan Devotion (6.1%)
    Restore 60 Devotion Shrines
  92. Ori and the Blind Forest: Formidable (6.2%)
    Complete the game on Hard Difficulty
  93. Alien: Isolation: Just Out of Reach (6.4%)
    Contact your team and escape Comms without being attacked by an android
  94. Frostpunk: Full House (6.4%)
    Have over 700 population
  95. Civilization V: My Little Pony (6.5%)
    As Catherine, research Horseback Riding before any other Civ
  96. Sniper Elite 4: Keeping Your Distance (6.5%)
    Total kill distance of 100 Kilometres
  97. Smite: Everybody Getting Tipsy (6.5%)
    As Bacchus, intoxicate three or more enemy Gods at once
  98. Grim Dawn: Korvan Explorer (6.6%)
    Open 30 One-Shot Chests
  99. Zombie Army Trilogy: You Have… Death Around You (6.6%)
    Reach Wave 10 in Horde Mode – Dead End
  100. Alien: Isolation: Survivor (6.7%)
    Complete the game on the hardest difficulty setting

I had never known fear until yesterday evening. When you have a child, all emotions take on new meaning, for I can also say I never knew the meaning of love until my son entered my life. It’s not gatekeeping to say one cannot fathom the ferocity of the love a parent feels for their child until you have one yourself, it’s just a fact of life. The fact that I never wanted to be a father is a faint and distant memory amidst the storm of emotions actually having a child stirs up in me. In a very short time, my son has become to singular focal point of every molecule of affection in me. That’s why my mother’s words last night gave me a sinking feeling so intense, so instantaneous, that I felt as if I had been dropped in the ocean with concrete galoshes.
My mother knows what hours I work. She wouldn’t call me at 7:53 PM if there wasn’t something very wrong. I answered my phone with a building sense of dread. Perhaps my mother has a taste for dramatic flair or perhaps she really is just clueless to begin the conversation the way she did. The paramedics, she told me, were on their way out. My heart leapt into my throat. I suddenly had tunnel vision, but my vision gradually returned to normal as she explained the situation. My son had managed to get himself stuck in a piece of furniture. Specifically, his leg became trapped in part of my mother’s living room end table. The fire department had to come and cut the furniture in order to free him. I wasn’t particularly interested in the finer details. “Is he okay?!” I asked, eager for her to give me the one piece of information I cared about, the one thing with which she should have led in the first place.
Physically, my son is fine. More or less. He has some slight bruising. Psychologically, it was a bit of a traumatizing experience for him. I stopped work straight away and went to go pick my son up. By the time I arrived, he was sound asleep. I would sooner let the whole world burn to ash, myself included, than let him feel a moment’s suffering or trepidation.
I was back at work before I knew it. With my son asleep, there was little else for me to do. I recently got promoted at work and it feels very much like they’re grooming me for another one. I’ve been working on special projects for months now, chief among them being the “ticket work” I do on a nightly basis that completely removes me from having to deal with any inbound phone calls. Now I’ve inherited an additional project that has granted me access to documents and spreadsheets normally only accessible to supervisors. I’m even able to recommend coaching for other technicians who may be working their tickets improperly, something I cannot imagine they’d allow if my own quality assurance scores weren’t near perfection. “Am I to be the judge?” I asked, feeling a bit uneasy at being granted so much authority even over technicians who outrank me.
“You’re the executioner.”


I like to believe that one of my few talents is the ability to detect when something is inauthentic. I think that’s why I have such a difficult time finding new music. I’m in my thirties and still listening to the same stuff I listened to before graduating elementary school. While my wife and I most definitely do not have the same taste in music, she’s right about one thing: Most music today is instant noodles. It’s a quick meal with no nutritional value or staying power. You’ll hear a song everywhere you go. By next year, no one even remembers that song. I take great pride in listening to the same bands and artists for nearly three decades. Even music with that kind of staying power cannot stay completely fresh forever though. That’s not to say I’ll ever stop listening to those artists, but it is to say that I often find myself feeling parched for something new.

That’s when I ask myself how long it has actually been since last I discovered an artist with that kind of staying power. There have been a couple handfuls of artists whose work I enjoy, but I wouldn’t say I’ve found much of anything that has truly inspired me the way all those ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s bands do. When I do discover something new, it’s not particularly new at all. I invited The Cure into my library in the year 2000 after seeing them perform Maybe Someday from their then new studio album Bloodflowers while watching television one evening. The Cure’s debut album, Three Imaginary Boys, came out in 1979. I’ve been listening to a fair amount of Dio this year. Dio’s Egypt (The Chains Are On) has been one of those tracks that has been on perpetual repeat on my own personal 2021 playlist, but the song came out in 1984. Dio’s first solo album came out in 1983 and Ronnie James Dio passed away in 2010. Indeed, my favorite musicians all seem to be in their fifties, sixties, and even their seventies. The clock is ticking and no one is coming along to fill the voids they leave behind when, like Pink Floyd’s Rick Wright in 2008, they inevitably leave us. Or descend into mediocrity. Explosions in the Sky’s 2003 album, The Earth Is Not a Cold Dead Place, is, in my book, the greatest post-rock album ever made, but the Austin-based band hasn’t really done anything exceptional since.

I’ve felt like a junkie looking for his music fix and the only place I’ve been able to find it is by digging ever deeper into decades past. Then, early this year, I was watching After Life on Netflix. I may enjoy Ricky Gervais’ standup routine and the way he put Hollywood in its place at the 2020 Golden Globes, but it’s not a series I can recommend. All the same, I owe it a debt of gratitude, for, in the series’ fourth episode, something caught my ear. As a lifetime devotee of rock and metal music, I always feel a strange pang of guilt when I enjoy something not readily identifiable as rock music, but I couldn’t deny that, whatever this was, I liked what I was hearing.

It turns out that what I was hearing was a song called Youth by the London-based indie folk (whatever that means) band Daughter. The very same day, I had purchased Daughter’s entire discography. I’ve been listening obsessively since. Elena Tonra’s voice had struck a chord in me. Before I knew it, I had also purchased her solo album under the name Ex:Re, which wasn’t quite at the level of the stuff she was doing with Daughter but still had some standout tracks like Crushing. The more I listened, the more convinced I became that this was an artist of a caliber I had not heard in twenty years and Daughter’s live performances exceeded even their excellent studio recordings.

Where, I wondered, had this angel’s voice been all my life or at least since Daughter released their debut studio album in 2013’s If You leave? There’s this authenticity there that has been so painfully lacking in my world for so very long. Elena Tonra’s voice is so effortless, her personality so genuine, and the music comes straight from the heart. Tracks like Amsterdam and Doing the Right Thing carry such emotional weight and left me aching for more.

Word on the street is there’s a new Daughter album in the works due out later this year. I wait with bated breath. A third studio album on the level of 2013’s If You Leave and 2016’s Not to Disappear will really solidify things and bring clarity to this whole situation for me because, as it stands right now, this band is half a breath away from joining a very exclusive club of my all-time favorite artists, none of whom, up to this point, hail from our present millennium.