GAMIFICATION is the application of gaming constructs to non-game contexts.
• Immediate rewards/feedback (e.g. badges, points, likes etc)
• Measurable progress path
• Task/challenge based
• Problem solving
• Fun factor
• Player centric
• Personal finance (https://www.mint.com/)
• Location-based social networking (https://foursquare.com/)
• Technical forums (http://stackoverflow.com/)
• Test driven development (http://www.happyprog.com/tdgotchi/ – requires Eclipse)
• Software development tutorials (http://www.codecademy.com/)
Is Gamification effective?
The aim of Gamification is to apply the mechanics of gaming in order to reward user engagement and encourage a sense of achievement.
As a buzzword – Gamification is trending (http://www.google.com/trends/explore#q=gamification) and there is evidence that Gamification can produce some benefits:
However – there have been MANY criticisms of Gamficiation. These range from:
• Gamification relying on extrinsic rewards rather than intrinsic motivation. This produces a failure to offer long-term, sustainable value. As with Foursquare – the appeal offered by Gamification is typically one of novelty
• Overreach. It’s been adopted too far beyond its intended remit – “Gartner Says by 2014, 80 Percent of Current Gamified Applications Will Fail to Meet Business Objectives” (http://www.gartner.com/newsroom/id/2251015)
• My favourite criticism is here: http://gamedeveloper.texterity.com/gamedeveloper/201105?pg=58#pg58
Aspects of Gamification are appealing, when applied correctly there is evidence that Gamification can increase initial engagement. However as an approach to generate meaningful, long term changes – the jury is out.
If you’ve read this far – congratulations you’ve won a “Gamification badge” 🙂