My Confusion Over Completion Percentages

dying light the following dlc

Percentages. Numbers. Metrics. Statistics. I like knowing how all these things work within games. I like data. I like being informed.

That being said, I have little to no idea how certain games estimate completion percentages.

Case in point:

I started playing Dying Light’s The Following DLC yesterday, and while I only have a handful of hours in to the expansion, it shows I’m 55% of the way through the story. That didn’t seem right, so I looked at the trophy listing, and I have only one of the story-related trophies (of which there are many). There is no conceivable way I am over halfway through the narrative of the DLC, yet Dying Light says differently.

And this isn’t the first game by a long shot that’s puzzled me in such a way.

So where do those numbers come from? Do they come from a general estimation based on arbitrary activities you have completed along the course of your playthrough? Is the story measured in some bizarre way that doesn’t lend itself to reason? Or are those numbers completely useless and only there to make the player feel like they have accomplished something?

This makes me wonder if I left the game running while doing absolutely nothing, would that count towards the story being completed?

Probably not. But I’m flummoxed.

I suppose I wonder why this happens at all. In my mind, the narrative of a game is finite. You could only ever be as far as you were in the story. That would be your percentage of completion. If there were ten missions total and you had completed five, it should say you are at 50% story completion.

That just makes sense.

Instead, for Dying Light at least, it seems to be on some super wonky scale that I can make neither heads nor tails of.


Perhaps I’m not meant to know how this works. Although, at this rate, I will have completed 150% of the story once I finish the DLC.

I really hope it says that.

Does anyone out there know what the completion percentages are based on? I’d love to know, and the internet machine has been of little help.

I have such confusion.

8 replies »

  1. I for one want to you finish the game at the very least with 155% complete. (The orgional story + DLC 100% + 100% = 200%)
    Now if this was some sports themed game, like Madden Football 29.
    In a pre-game locker room pep talk; where the coach wants each & every one of us to give 110% that adds up to a very solid victory quite fast.
    So, let us all raise a glass to video game math. (Video game math in the real world). If I were to drink 110% of a 6 pack of my favorite beer, I should probably get more than 6 beers. At 150% beer completion I should be able to indulge in 9 beers. That’s 1.5 beers per mile I walk at work.
    I hope this helps.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Maybe you’ve inadvertently done a bunch of side stuff, collectibles and what-not, that are part of the games completion tracking but unrelated to the main story? I haven’t played the game, so I don’t even know if it has things like that. I know I was determined to 100% Lego Star Wars but never could. I beat the game, unlocked all the characters, found all the hidden things I could think of and could never get the value over 98%. It drove me nuts until I forced myself to let it go.


    • Nope. I tried to figure if that was the case, but it didn’t appear to be so.

      And how odd. In that case it seems like it was worse to know than to not know.


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