What do Foursquare, Zynga, Nike+, and Groupon have in common? These and many other brands use gamification to deliver a sticky, viral, and engaging experience to their customers. This book provides the design strategy and tactics you need to integrate game mechanics into any kind of consumer-facing website or mobile app. Learn how to use core game concepts, design patterns, and meaningful code samples to a create fun and captivating social environment.
Whether you're an executive, developer, producer, or product specialist, Gamification by Design will show you how game mechanics can help you build customer loyalty.
Discover the motivational framework game designers use to segment and engage consumers
Understand core game mechanics such as points, badges, levels, challenges, and leaderboards
Engage your consumers with reward structures, positive reinforcement, and feedback loops
Combine game mechanics with social interaction for activities such as collecting, gifting, heroism, and status
Dive into case studies on Nike and Yahoo!, and analyze interactions at Google, Facebook, and Zynga
Get the architecture and code to gamify a basic consumer site, and learn how to use mainstream gamification APIs from Badgeville
"Turning applications into games is a huge trend. This book does a great job of identifying the core lasting principals you need to inspire your users to visit again and again." —Adam Loving Freelance Social Game Developer and founder of Twibes Twitter Groups
Chapter 1 Foundations
The Fun Quotient
The Evolution of Loyalty
Status at the Wheel
The House Always Wins
Chapter 2 Player Motivation
Powerful Human Motivators
Why People Play
Intrinsic versus Extrinsic Motivation
Progression to Mastery
Motivational Moment: Be the Sherpa
Chapter 3 Game Mechanics: Designing for Engagement (Part I)
Chapter 4 Game Mechanics: Designing for Engagement (Part II)
Challenges and Quests
Social Engagement Loops
Gaming the System
Agile and Gamification Design
Empty Bar Problem: Foursquare
Chapter 5 Game Mechanics and Dynamics in Greater Depth
Feedback and Reinforcement
Game Mechanics in Depth
Putting It Together
Chapter 6 Gamification Case Studies
Nike Plus: Making Fitness Fun
Gamify Questions—or Answers
Chapter 7 Tutorial: Coding Basic Game Mechanics
Planning a Gamification Makeover
A System for Tracking Scores and Levels
Displaying Player Scores and Levels on the Site
The Trophy Case
Chapter 8 Tutorial: Using an Instant Gamification Platform
Gabe Zichermann is an author, public speaker, serial entrepreneur, and the foremost expert on the subject of gamification. His book, Game-Based Marketing (Wiley, 4/2010) has achieved critical and industry acclaim for its detailed look at innovators who blend the power of games with brand strategy. Zichermann is also the author of the Gamification Blog at http://gamification.co and chair of the Gamification Summit and Workshops.
Christopher Cunningham is a software architect and developer who helped found ChroniQL, an early gamification solution; beamME, a mobile social application; and TrekMail, a breakthrough mobile email/text application. Christopher has deep expertise with agile development processes and distributed team management.
The animal on the cover of Gamification by Design is the rhesus monkey (Macacamulatta), a member of the macaque family. These animals are highly social, living ingroups of 20 to 200 individuals where the female to male ratio can be as high as 4:1.In addition to this disparity, each gender has a separate hierarchy system within thegroup. Males—as in other animal species—gain dominance by age and experience,and young or defeated males are often driven away. In contrast, female rhesus monkeyshave a stable matrilineal structure, wherein females inherit their rank from theirmother. Even more uniquely in rhesus culture, younger daughters will also outranktheir older sisters, likely because they are more fertile.Rhesus monkeys have gray or brown fur and hairless pink faces, which are capableof displaying a large range of expressions. On average, their tails are 8–9 inches long,and they weigh 12–17 pounds. Native to South Asia and India, rhesus monkeys livein a wide range of terrain and altitudes, such as grassland, forests, and mountainousregions. They are most active during the day, and can be found in the trees, on theground, or even swimming.Fruit is the primary staple of their diet, but these monkeys also eat insects, seeds, andother plant matter. They are very adaptable, and have become notorious for stealingfood (and other nonedible items that catch their interest) from urban areas.Due to their large population and physiological similarity to humans, rhesus monkeysare often used in scientific research. Infant rhesus monkeys were test subjectsin psychologist Harry Harlow’s surrogate mother experiment, which studied the rolethat the mother-child bond (or lack thereof) has on development. In 1959, a rhesusmonkey named Able earned the distinction of being one of the first two living beingsto successfully return from outer space (the other was Miss Baker, a squirrel monkey onthe same NASA mission). Able was preserved after his death, and is on display in theSmithsonian National Air and Space Museum.
Today, we are aware that certain web games are successful because their developers knew how to engage their target players. This is because they applied very well the human aspects when playing pastime and puzzles in the traditional way.
This book starts showing us why people plays and what purpose they want to get, so we need to identify what kind of users our application will have: Socializers, Explorers, Achievers or Killers? So, how can we develop web applications in a manner our end users can enjoy it while working with it, even if it is not a game?
This book is an introductory path for understanding the mechanics of how people gets motivated with playing a game again and again and extending those concepts to more varied fields like health, knowledge and customer support. Those core concepts are points, levels, leader boards, loyalty, rewards, badges, social experiences and game mechanics versus game dynamics. Chapter five is very valuable because it covers twelve game mechanics that we can adapt for our web application user experience like collecting, delight, gifting, leading and fame.
The book finishes showing us a programming project which applies many of the aforementioned gammification concepts for a forums web site.
This book is very good to start designing web applications with games metaphors. A drawback I found is: How to gammify an application intended for the internal enterprise staff? This question is not clearly answered or inferred.
Note 1: By the time of writing this review the web site recommended by the authors http://GamificationU.com is not longer available. I think the new site is http://www.gamification.co/.
Note 2: This book was reviewed as a part of the O'Reilly Blogger Review Program (http://www.oreilly.com/reviews/)
Bottom Line Yes, I would recommend this to a friend
The idea of using games and such to help engage people with learning a product or idea appeals to me. On of my favourite apps on my iPhone is Mind Snacks (http://mindsnacks.com/), a fun application that aids learning Spanish through a series of games.
It was interesting that the blogger review program is it's own game. Completing a level in this game is doing a review. I have to complete levels to be able to do more reviews.
Gamification by Design is well written and easy to understand. It does a good job of presenting the key ideas of Gamification. The use of real world examples showing what people have done is great. There's even some real code showing how a forum being enhanced with Gamification. The code examples and examples of interactions with gamification services complete a good book. It was an exciting eye opening read that I thoroughly enjoyed. I was able to get a good introduction to the theories and principles behind gamification, and ground these in reality with the code and examples.
I wouldn't hesitate to recommend the book to someone technical wanting to learn about gamification.
[this book was reviewed as a part of the O'Reilly Blogger Review Program]
Bottom Line Yes, I would recommend this to a friend