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Generally speaking, in gamification, a reliance on nothing but the unholy trinity (Points, Badges and Leaderboards) is a guaranteed recipe for eventual failure.
However, that does not mean they should be ignored – especially not points!
Points are how a system records activity, tracks progress, understands achievements – they are the currency of gamification. That said, they don’t need to be the central focus of the user experience in a gamified solution. In fact, they can be totally hidden from view at all times, just ticking away in the background making other more interesting things happen for the user.
So my advice. Points are cool, you just need to use them wisely and you don’t need to show them to the user in every project! See if you can do it without them being visible, However, if you don’t have them running the background, hidden from view, you will never be able to show them if you decide you need to!
Also published on Medium.