Design compelling experiences, not addicting

Roulette 1426080131 Design compelling experiences not addicting

A worrying trend I have noticed in gamification is people talking about making addicting experiences or applications.  You hear phrases like “Addiction loops” and “Habit forming”.

I am pretty sure that their intentions are good,  90% of the time. They are describing experiences that people will want to come back to again and again. The key word is want. If you create an experience that people want to return to, you have done your job well. If people have to come back because it is a key tool to their job, or something they have to use on a regular basis, you have done a good job if people find it usable, pain free and at time an enjoyable experience. Read More ...

Play, games, toys, playfulness and gamification

Game vs play Play games toys playfulness and gamification

Lately I have been thinking about play a lot. This is probably because of watching my children growing up and seeing how play changes into games as they develop. I have written about play before and it does form part of my general Game Thinking framework, but it is lumped with toys and games – rather lazily.

I wanted to give play and my surrounding thoughts on it its own post.

Play

Play is free form and unlike a game does not need to have a point or a goal to it. It exists within a set of rules created by the person or people playing and is born in the imagination.  Often it is a way of exploring the boundaries and extremes of something, in search for new and novel experiences.  It is undertaken for its own sake often for fun and joy. Read More ...

Skill Trees and Gamification

InventorSkillTree Skill Trees and Gamification

Now that I have redone the User Types, I wanted to run a small series of how elements from games can be used with gamification. If you remember, I look at Game Thinking rather than just gamification as a singular path to solutions. Games handle complex problems and ideas in a fantastic way. They can simplify the complex without losing hte meaning.

For this one, I want to consider Skill Trees.

Most commonly seen in Role Playing Games (RPG’s) such as World of Warcraft and strategy / world domination games like Civilization. The image below is an example from a game called Legends of Aethereus. Read More ...

5 tips for good Gamification I learned from designing games.

Magical Kingdom Cards 5 tips for good Gamification I learned from designing games

Gamification often takes and claims inspiration from game design. One of my side hobbies is making the occasional game, as well as spending the last seven years reviewing games for my site yars.co.uk. I thought I would just put a few gamification ideas into context based around my personal knowledge of games and game design. I am y no means an expert, but I hope you will find it interesting.

Tl;TR?

First up, points. I have made games with point systems and I have made games without. Generally I use the points as a way to represent progression and skill – ie, the higher the score, the further your skills have progressed. This is intrinsic on its own, it is a way for the individual player to see how they are doing and if they are improving. This only works if the points reset each time, that way the player can easily see that if they score higher next time – they have improved. Cumulative points don’t allow you to do this, they just show how many points you have collected over time, which is a little less useful. You could consider a personal leaderboard, that just shows the player their scores over time for an exercise- thus easily showing them their improvement. Read More ...

Is it gamification if….?

Game Thinking 4 Is it gamification if 8230

This is a question I get asked all the time. Is it gamification if x,y or z.  Depending on my mood and their question, I answer a little differently at first but always end the same way. Is it taking something that is not a game and making it more game like in some way? If it is, then you could call it gamification – but you are likely to get people complain one way or the other!

As you may or may not know, I have spent a great deal of time trying to organise my thoughts on this and define gamificaiton, which is how I settled on Game Thinking. This is my umbrella term that covers everything from making interfaces look a little more “gamey”, to making full fledged games. Read More ...