This quick guide will help you remember what gamification is and how to best use it. I've put everything you need to know in one place, so you never have to commit it to memory unless you really want to (no bonus XP though 😉).
If one of your New Year's Resolutions is to get fit1 then you might need a little motivation to get you started.
I've done some of the leg work for you and found 3 gamified apps that offer different things depending on what you like when it comes to games.
We don't all like or play the same games, so if you're creating a gamified app it's always important to consider who your target player is and what they like when it comes to games.
Okay, ready to get your game on?
1. Zombies Run
Zombies, Run! got me back into running a few years ago. It basically adds a zombie apocalypse story to your run where you become a "runner" who goes out to find supplies for your base.
The narrative is top quality with excellent voice acting. It plays out in-between a playlist of your own songs.
Also if you're feeling up for the challenge you can switch on zombie chases, where sometime during your run you'll start to hear the sounds of zombies chasing you...
You'll have to pick up your pace and outrun them as the app knows how fast you're running.
If you get caught, you lose any items you picked up during your run.
2. Fit For Battle
If you're over the whole zombie apocalypse narrative then how about a fantasy running app that transforms your work out into an epic fitness RPG?
Fit for Battle provides a similar experience to Zombies, Run but also has more RPG (Role-Playing Game) style elements.
Think battles, random story events, levelling and loot.
If a fantasy world or zombie narrative is not really your thing, then try Strava.
It's is a great app that doesn't look like a game, but still has some really motivating gamification elements.
Use Strava to record your exercise. If you run or cycle then you'll be able to compare yourself to your previous attempts, or anyone else who has also recorded the same path or 'segments' as you. You can see where you place on a leaderboard, and receive trophies depending on your best times.
If you want to delve more into Strava and why it can be so engaging then check out this article by one user: Strava Made Me Do It.
One more thing... Park Run
Although Zombies, Run! got me back into running, what kept me running each week was something completely different - and it wasn't an app (although it is 'gamified' in a sense).
It's called Park Run. It's a free, weekly, timed run organised by volunteers for absolutely anyone.
Print a paper barcode to participate and you'll have your time recorded. You can track your times on the website and see how you did against others in your age group.
The community aspect of the run is great and is what keeps me coming back with my friends and family. We have about 400 runners each week at my local Park Run!
It's a great way to start the weekend and it also encourages you to not stay out too late on a Friday night. 😉
Check to see if there's a Park Run in your country.
So those are three apps and one weekly event that I've found that might be able to help you keep fit this year. There's something there for everyone, from Zombie chases and to global leaderboards.
Is there a different app, event or technique you use? If so, share it in the comments below or on our Facebook page.
1 Although if you read my post on Nailing Your New Year's Resolutions then you'll know that "get fit" isn't a clear enough goal 😉
Hello 2018! Boy it felt like 2017 whooshed by, didn't it? Creating New Year's Resolutions are a traditional cycle that many of us go through, but they can be tough to keep. This can happen for a number of reasons - our resolutions may be too vague, may not be achievable, or we don't set up a new routine to achieve them.
So let's fix that. This year let's do something a little different.
If you're looking for a way to increase engagement and participation in the classroom then look no further than gamification. When done well, it can be a great way to increase student motivation and reinforce learning content.
But knowing where to begin can be a little overwhelming.
So to help you get started out I've found and tried 3 easy and free ways to get started that won't take too much setup or preparation time. And just so you know, I'm not affiliated with any of these - I just think they're awesome.
If you have any ways you gamify your classroom then make sure to share it in the comments below!
1. Create engaging quizzes with Kahoot
I love Kahoot. It's a super fun way to reinforce learning through engaging quiz and works for all ages.
Kahoot lets you create multiple choice quizzes and then present them in a fun way to the class.
Your students will need access to a computer or mobile device (or they can share devices), and you'll need a screen and computer to run the quiz.
There are a lot of pre-made quizzes available too that you can use or rework for your class.
*Note Kahoot do have a paid account called Kahoot Plus for organisations and businesses with more features, but for schools Kahoot is free.
2. Create engaging quizzes with... a slideshow!
Kahoot works great if all your students have phones or computers, but this isn't always the case. So if you want a more lo-fi version of a fun quiz you can use a slideshow instead to create a similar experience.
The game I like to play is heads or tails. It's super easy to run and gets students up from their seats. The idea is that you create 10 true or false questions for students to answer related to the current content you're teaching. Everyone stands up and then proceeds to try and answer the questions by either putting their hands on their heads (true) or tails (false). If they get it incorrect, they sit down. You may have a few left standing fo the last question so a fun way to end the quiz and keep everyone involved is to get the last few to stand in front of the class and then the quickest person to answer the last question correctly is the winner.
3. Playful class support with Class Dojo
Finally, there's ClassDojo which is a little different to the games above. It's more of an organisation tool for the classroom. It connects teachers, parents, and students who use it and allows them to share photos, videos, and messages through the school day. You can use ClassDojo to encourage students to work together as a team and share their in class experience. It's a neat, free tool for classrooms and is well worth checking out if you're a teacher.
- Share how you gamify your classroom in the comments below.
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- Get in touch if you have any questions or comments.
Today I've got a real treat for you. We're going to look at the latest Zelda game from Nintendo!
*Pause for dramatic effect*
Okay, let's be honest, you might have read the title and thought to yourself - Okay Zac... is talking about the loading screen in Zelda really going to help me with gamification?
Apart from being a great excuse to talk about one the best games I've recently played, what I want to look at today are ways to get you thinking about how to engage people when they have to wait. Why?
I have a bad habit of pulling out my phone and playing the game Clash Royale whenever I have a spare moment. This habit is so ingrained in me I find myself automatically doing it, even when I was supposed to be doing something else on my phone. It's got to the point where I need to deal with it, and what better way to do that then by writing a blog post about it as an excuse to play it... I mean analyse it... even more.
This is a fairly long post which helps explain why the Gamification Weekly newsletter has been retired and been replaced by this website.
- It's tough finding fresh and interesting gamification news...
- ...so it's time to start writing content instead!
- Goodbye Gamification Weekly, Hello Gamification Geek!
I presented recently at /dev/world/2016 – Australia’s longest-running conference for OS X and iOS developers and designers. It's a brilliant conference and well worth attending if you're an app developer or designer. In this presentation I took the chance to talk about usability and motivational psychology and why they’re both as equally important to consider when designing engaging apps.
If you want a copy of the slides, resources, references and further reading visit this page.
As I stared at the loading screen for Pokémon Go for the third time this morning I started to question myself... why am I still playing this game? It's incredibly buggy, there's not that much to it, yet I'm still finding myself opening it to look for Pokémon.
I'm sure you've heard of Pokémon Go given the insane popularity of it. It's a location-based game for your smartphone where you walk around in the real world and try to catch virtual monsters to add to your collection.
Mailchimp, the newsletter sending service, has some brilliant little playful elements they’ve added to their sending process. What’s interesting about these changes is that I believe they also subtly persuade you to send better newsletters. Let’s look at this further.
Push the big red button
You’ve created your newsletter, you’re ready to send, so you press the send campaign button and you’re presented with the following screen...