On June 22nd and 23rd, a group from the Newton consortium will be running a workshop on gamification at the Irish Game-Based Learning Conference in Cork. At the risk of giving away too many secrets, I wanted to share some of the ‘golden rules’ of gamification that I have been working on and that we hope to implement into the Newton solution. So here goes:
– Gamification is not about ‘making a game’: this is important; to gamify is about using game mechanics to engage or motivate. It is distinct from the development of a game
– Understand the point: it’s easy to think that throwing some game mechanics at a situation will automatically engage and motivate your user. It won’t. The gamification needs to be coherent with the wider objectives you are trying to achieve.
– Establish what constitutes a ‘win’: a central element to any gamified experience is knowing what the gamification elements are leading you towards. If your purpose is to motivate, then you have be clear about the rewards.
– Understand the motivations of the players: this shares something from the above list in that understanding who your player is and what would be interesting to them in terms of reward and challenge is key to establishing which gamification metrics you use.
– Appeal to the emotions: part of what makes a gamified experience so compelling is that it brings out the child in us because it is inherently fun, non-serious and non-consequential. When applying game mechanics, it’s important to remember the part of us that loves playing and games and to relegate the more rational side of us.
– Think about intrinsic and extrinsic motivations: gamification can stimulate both these things and the gamified experience should be considered from both perspectives.
If you want to learn more, sign up for the conference at www.igbl-conference.com. See you in Cork!