Proposal: Gamification

Is this about building games / game systems from non game data like "So I'm designing a game about rigging the election and I'm tryng to figure out if liberals should get automatic compassion points ..." or is this about applying game theory with questions like "I'm trying to rig the election for dog catcher using the idea from dungeons and dragons that ..."?

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    "Proposed Q&A site for professionals, academics, and enthusiasts who apply game mechanics in non-game contexts. This includes applications for enterprises, consumers, social good, and personal improvement."
    – user72809
    Nov 21, 2014 at 22:26
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    A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, people where answering each other questions through "forum" connect via a network called the "internet". This did not work very well : people did not ask very clear questions or provide awesomely detailed answer. Then Stack Vador thought : "What if we made it a game in which people could earn points for good answers and questions? They could start competing with others and with themselves, earn badges, award bounties,...". Stack Vador created such gamified forum, and from that day on, the galaxy lived in a bliss of knowledge and wisdom. Nov 22, 2014 at 0:15
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    I'm kind of curious why this question got downvoted... it seems to be a valid question in regards to clarification of what we seek to help with. It is a perfect scope question. Apart from the political "opinion" (which may simply be a joke) there is no reason why this should be DV..
    – Phlume
    Apr 9, 2015 at 14:17

5 Answers 5


A classic example of Gamification is at Target stores in the US. They had a problem with long waiting times at check-out queues. They had tried the normal methods of employee incentives to try and mitigate the problem but in the end the one that worked was a gamified one. What they did was to get a average time to pass different item through t(a pack of batteries is quicker than a table and chairs), then if the checkout person put the item through quicker than the target time a big green 'G' appeared on their screen, if they did not and big red 'R' appeared. At the end of each person passing through they were given a percentage hit rate of 'G's achieved. People started to try and beat their best score, or the target of 85% and checkout times went down.


Gamification is about creating a game on/about something you need or want to do. According to my personal experience, one might not have enough motivation to do something, so one can gamify that something to gain extra motivation on resolving it.

Let's take an example. Let's say you want to walk five kilometers every day. Being healthy/getting health benefits is not a good reason enough for your motivation to make you do it. Then you may want to think about it in a gamified way. What if you make a Leveling or a pointing system, where you get one Level by walking five kilometers, and another Level by walking ten kilometers and so on. You also have the possibility to add more stuff to the gamified idea to further enhance your motivation: Levels, Titles/Ranks, Pointing system, rewarding system you spend points on and so on.

  • This is a good definition of gamification and accepted answer is a good example of it. In my company I have introduced points around sales activities and development activities. These points can be used to buy items from our in office shop which are like some badges, cute decorative items etc. Other than that there are various milestones around different type of activities and a leaderboard for selected activities. It is helping us keep our employees productive and happy. Mar 21, 2015 at 3:49

Not exactly. Gamification, put simply, is using gaming techniques to solve real-world problems. Create a 'game' that requires 'players' to work towards a common goal. Often used for analysing so-called Big Data.


It is very important to note that "gamification" is simply a buzz word applied to an old theory: Reward with a token of merit the accomplishments an individual attains. Earning badges for completing steps in a process is very old.

  • The Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts (USA) have been earning badges for accomplishments for over 100 years.
  • Children have earned trophies, ribbons, medals and awards for school events for centuries.
  • Though less gamified, nearly every branch of the armed forces globally has some level of merit/badge/medal system to honor accomplishments and completions of tours of duty for their uniformed soldiers.

The process of adding game play layers to a task is not restricted to the business world either. We see it show up in education (math bingo for candy prizes), within families (do your chores to earn an allowance), in the work force (Employee of the month earns a good parking spot) and even in athletics (Salary bonus for reaching the world series or super bowl).

What should be unique to our Gamification SE is the process of developing interesting and innovative games for players, as well as a focus on balance and rewards to offset the "task" of completion. Coaching other game-play designers on what has worked or hasn't worked in a certain set of scenarios is the Q&A format we could provide. If a coach wants to gamify the attendance to Saturday AM practices, we should be able to offer suggestions on different tactics that could be tried. If a boss wants to offer incentive program for employees, we should help with the balance of how much to give away without making it a worthless endeavor.


Gamification is using rewards to promote a certain behavior (or to discourage other behaviors).

For instance schools hand out gold stars and the children are proud of their accomplishments and strive to get more. StackOverflow gives out stars and adults are proud of their accomplishments and strive to get more.

In school the stars are to promote and reward academic excellence (spelling) or behavior. In StackOverflow it's to promote interaction on the site (moderating questions and answers); to give incentive to people to give well thought out answers as opposed to simply lurking or giving terse one-liners as an answer; as well as to give visual clues as to what are considered to be more valuable questions and answers.

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