Lasombra Files Episode 2: Lethal Weapon Enforcers

Welcome to the Lasombra Files, the site’s new weekly hit program. Follow the story of Lasombra and V as they try to stay alive in Shadow City, unravelling its secrets, while at the same time shining the spotlight on trophy hunters around the world and in our community.


We arrive at the meeting spot, a small cafe dive that looked like someone opened up a page from the 60s playbook. Inside would make even my cocaine induced acid-flashback brain to trip out from the decor, as V and I slip into a corner table. A man walks up to us and shiftily sits down, slipping us a folder. He tells us we are on to something big, something that will blow the city wide open. No sooner he opens his mouth to speak, a hail of bullets air out the cafe. Apparently no one likes a rat in Episode 2: Lethal Weapon Enforcers. “Don’t worry V; I’m sure the dry cleaner can get brain stains off your uniform, assuming the Boss doesn’t kill us first.”

Disclaimer: This interview is reproduced as written by the interviewee with the exception of spelling and some grammar corrections. Pictures copyright of their artist/photographer/owner.


Name: Jimmy (Lethal_NFS)

Age: 32

Gender: Male

Occupation: Owner/operator of deck & porch business

Country: USA


Lasombra: When did you start gaming?

Lethal: I started gaming in 1986. I was 6 years old then. I started with an Atari 2600 and the Colecovision. That Christmas I got my first Nintendo and I never stopped gaming.


Lasombra: How did you choose your PSN name?

Lethal: Back in 2004, I was a big Call of Duty gamer on the PC. I was in a clan and I was incredibly lethal with the AK-47. People started calling me Lethal, and our clan name was "No FEAR Soliders". That is how Lethal_NFS came about.


Lasombra: What motivated you to become a trophy hunter? What was your initial spark?

Lethal: My love for hunting trophies actually started late on the (Xbox) 360. A friend of mine said I could not get 10,000 achievement/trophy points in a single week. I met that goal and became hooked. When the PS3 finally announced trophies, I felt that I had a good chance to be top ranked. For the first two years I was ranked in the top 20 around the world. It became an obsession that I finally had to let go. I have a family and I needed to lay off the gaming a little. 


Lasombra: Are you a trophy hunter, platinum hunter, or a specific hunter? (Example: All GoW game hunter)

Lethal: When I am playing a game, my main goal is always to finish it 100%. I used to play anything that had platinum trophies. Because I got the {latinum in Hannah Montana, Damnation, and Ice Age 3, I think that qualifies me as being a "trophy whore," Ha Ha.


Lasombra: How many hours do you dedicate to trophy hunting?

Lethal: I used to dedicate about eight hours a day to trophy hunting. Today, I think I put in around three to four hours a day. Of course in the winter, my job slows down which gives me more time for gaming.


Lasombra: What motivates you to go for that next trophy? How do you stay motivated after a long gaming session, particularly with grinding trophies?

Lethal: I have a buddy on my friends list that is a trophy hunter as well. If I see he is getting close to getting a platinum trophy in the same game I am playing, well that motivates me to get it first. Once I start playing a game, I look at the trophy list to see if the Platinum is even possible without spending a ridiculous amount of time on the game. I am not a fan of multiplayer trophies, so I will tend to back off if I see a lot of trophies that require a lot of online multiplayer gaming. However, I do enjoy a good co-op game like Resident Evil 5 and Borderlands 1 and 2.


Lasombra: Have you ever gone through any burnout from your sessions?

Lethal: Resident Evil 5 really burned me out. After getting the Platinum, I did not want to touch that game ever again lol. I really loved the game, but me and my buddy literally spent eight hours a day for an entire week on that game. I would not go to bed till around 3 am every night lol. I was even having dreams about that damn game!!


Lasombra: What is your proudest platinum? Why? Was it your hardest?

Lethal: One of my proudest platinum trophies is probably Bioshock and Damnation. The hardest was easily Damnation because the game was broken. It had so many glitches and the game had no direction. You also had to finish the game in co-op to get the platinum trophy. Such a dreadful game. I was really proud when I got my Bioshock platinum. I tried a few times and failed early on when the game first released. I believe it was two years later that I decided to give it another shot. When I finally beat the game on the hardest difficulty without using a Vita Chamber, a huge sigh of relief came over me. I think I even raised my arm and yelled "FINALLY!" lol


Lasombra: Do you have a trophy goal for the year? If so, how far are you along in it?

Lethal: I am closing in on 6,000 trophies right now. I do not tend to make yearly goals anymore because it tends to hurt your social life. Now I just play the good games that come out.


Lasombra: Do you believe gamers should be allowed to make trophy hunting teams? Why or why not?

Lethal: Trophy teams are always a good thing. You can really speed up the online multiplayer portion of the trophy hunting.


Lasombra: Do you think Sony should create a world database with every user’s PSN trophy info for all to see? Why or why not?

Lethal: I think it would be nice if Sony combined all of their databases together to make one unified leaderboard. Everyone wants to see where they stand against the world.


Lasombra: What tips do you have for someone trying to reach the next level and going after a difficult Platinum?

Lethal: Research the trophies. YouTube has helped me quite a bit as well. Try not to give up, the more you attempt the trophy the easier it gets. Check to make sure there are no trophies that are glitched. There is nothing worse than going after a trophy that is not attainable.


Lasombra: Regardless of the system, what pre-trophy game would you auto-buy if it was released on the PS3 with trophy support?

Lethal: It used to be Metal Gear Solid 4, but since that just recently got a trophy patch, I would have to say Folklore. Folklore was such a good game and I think it deserves a trophy patch that would also resurrect this gem.


Lasombra: Having been in the top 20 in the world at one point in your career, how does it make you feel to see lots of teams holding those positions now instead of individuals?

Lethal: I honestly do not pay much attention to the top spots anymore. Since I am no longer competing for that spot, I try to not focus on any of that.


Lasombra: You’ve called yourself a trophy whore in jest, but what in your opinion is the difference between a trophy hunter and a trophy whore? Does the title actually mean anything to you?

Lethal: Good question. A "trophy whore" is someone who will play anything for the trophies. I have played games like "Hannah Montana", "Disney’s UP", and "Ice Age 3", just so I can get some easy trophies. A "trophy hunter" is someone who will try to get all the trophies in whichever game they are playing. They do not seek out games that they normally would not play. 


Lasombra: Have there been games you have not bought because it had lots of online trophies?

Lethal: There are a few games such as MAG and Little Big Planet 2. I just do not have time to earn the online trophies. I do have LBP2 now, but I am only playing for the single player trophies right now.


Lasombra: Having been severely burnt out by Resident Evil 5, how did you recover to take on the next platinum? What kind of secrets can you share with aspiring hunters?

Lethal: I was only burnt out by that game. The next game is something new and different. It is easy to move on to a different game. For me it is anyways.


Lasombra: What is your opinion of the argument that using a guide or youtube video reduces a trophy’s worth, and trophies should be achieved without guides or boosting?

Lethal: Sometime’s you need a little help figuring out how to get a trophy. I personally try to get the trophy myself before I hit up YouTube. A trophy hunter will get that trophy on their own; a trophy whore will use YouTube.


Lasombra: Having taken a step back from your elite top 20 days, do any of your trophy hunting friends have any aspirations to try and make the top 20 or 50 in the world?

Lethal: I honestly do not know. For the most part, I think we have all decided to just play the games that are good. No more playing crappy games for trophies.

Right now I think I am done trying to compete with the world. It really takes too much time. I think I was putting in 40+ hours a week when I was in the top 20. That is like working a full time job.


Lasombra: Taking a look at your trophy list, you have a wide array of different games. Have any of them make you throw your hands up and turn the console off?

Lethal: lol, many of the games on my list have made me shut off the console. Damnation was probably the game that made me do that the most. Leisure Suit Larry had quite a few moments where I had to just stop playing and also anything with a bad camera that leads to cheap deaths.


Lasombra: How is the rivalry going with your friend? Is it an ebb and flow rivalry, or has one dominated the other the entire time?

Lethal: Right now I only have one friend on my list that has more trophies than me. The rest of the guys pretty much stopped hunting trophies when I stopped. We all realized that we were playing a lot of crappy games for trophies. Now we just play the good ones.


We slip out quieter than our entrance as the brass show up to canvas the area for suspects and witnesses. Having the camera with us we blend in, first ones on the scene to report back to HQ with a breaking news story. I play stupid, interviewing one of the officers and actually doing my job for once. Funny how a random, dead, unknown informant would make the Boss happy. As we clear out I open up the envelope. Inside were directions to our next location in Episode 3: Duck, Duck, Platinum. “Do you have any extra Kevlar under that Soviet uniform V? I don’t think we’ll live long enough to win that Pulitzer.”

Missed an episode? Check out the back issues.

Written by –  Want to hear random thoughts about life in Japan, gaming, or want to leave your thoughts about the series and the story? Follow our intrepid reporter on FacebookTwitter, or email him at [email protected]