22 May

GAMIFICATION is the application of gaming constructs to non-game contexts.

Gaming constructs:

• Immediate rewards/feedback (e.g. badges, points, likes etc)
• Measurable progress path
• Task/challenge based
• Problem solving
• Fun factor
• Player centric

Non-game contexts:

• Personal finance (
• Location-based social networking (
• Technical forums (
• Test driven development ( – requires Eclipse)
• Software development tutorials (

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 ( 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” (
• My favourite criticism is here:


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” 🙂


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