Tag Archives: game

Using gamification to improve health – (part 2 of 2)

This is my answer for the second written assignment of the Gamification class I’m taking through Coursera. The full question is available here.

Describe in general terms a gamified system that could effectively motivate behaviour change to improve the health of city employees. Specifically, explain how the system would effectively incorporate intrinsic motivation, extrinsic motivation, or both. Your answer should address the fact that this is an internal gamification project, targeted at the institutional goals of the city government. The system can use any technology (or no technology!), so long as the resources required seem justified by the scope of the opportunity.

(via Cornell University Library archive)
(via Cornell University Library archive)

Continue reading Using gamification to improve health – (part 2 of 2)

Five reasons to use gamification to market breakfast pastries. (part 2 of 2)

This is my answer for the first written assignment for the Gamification class I’m taking through Coursera. You can read the question in full here.


Provide as many reasons as you can why gamification could be a useful technique to apply to the situation your manager has presented to you. Explain why these reasons address the specific scenario provided. At this stage, focus on the problem rather than the solution. In other words, describe the goals of the project, not the particular game elements or other techniques you plan to use.


Why would gamification be useful in marketing a new line of breakfast pastries? I will outline five reasons.

Why use gamification to market breakfast pastries? (part 1 of 2)

This is the first written assignment for the Gamification class I’m taking through Coursera. I’ll publish my answer later this week.


Why use gamification to market breakfast pastries?

Project Part I: Definition

You are an employee of Cereals Incorporated, a large manufacturer of breakfast food products.  Your supervisor, Madison County, approaches you because she knows you recently took a course on gamification, which she has heard will revolutionize marketing.  She tells you that Cereals Inc. is about to release a new line of ready-to-eat breakfast pastries, and she wants to know whether to use gamification as part of the marketing strategy.  The breakfast pastries will be aimed at the 18-35 age bracket. Surveys show members of this demographic often skip breakfast because they don’t want to eat the typical cereals of their youth, and they are too active to cook their own breakfasts. 

Market research indicates that the pastries are likely to appeal more to women than men by a 65%-35% ratio. Cereals Inc. has a 35% share of the overall breakfast food market, but only a 10% share of the fragmented ready-to-eat segment.
Continue reading Why use gamification to market breakfast pastries? (part 1 of 2)

Games and Play

This is the latest in a series of posts relating to the Gamification class I’m taking through Coursera.

“A game is a series of meaningful choices” – Sid Meier

What is the difference between games and play? In broad terms, play is unrestrained, spontaneous, exuberant, whereas games are formal, structured, and driven towards outcomes. In lecture 2.3, Kevin Werbach discussed the work of Roger Callois, who drew the distinction between ludus – structured activities with explicit rules, i.e. games) – and paidia – unstructured and spontaneous activities, i.e. playfulness. You can read more about Callois and his ideas here.
Continue reading Games and Play

Broken Sword: The Serpent’s Curse – preview

I’m a huge fan of point and click adventure games, and one of my all-time favourites is Broken Sword: Shadow of the Templars. I loved its beautiful art style, engaging gameplay and well-plotted story. The latest installment is Broken Sword: The Serpent’s Curse, which was part funded through Kickstarter. Episode 1 of the game was featured as Editor’s Choice in the Apple App Store last week, and as you might imagine, I downloaded it as soon as I found out. Expect a full review once I’ve played it through. In the meantime, here are a few juicy screenshots to whet your appetite.

BSword2
Continue reading Broken Sword: The Serpent’s Curse – preview

Gamification with Dr Kevin Werbach

I’ve enrolled in a short course about Gamification. It’s run by Kevin Werbach of the University of Pennsylvania, and I’m studying online via Coursera.

What is gamification? It can be difficult to pin down the definition of a fast-evolving phenomenon, because it changes so quickly. But let’s try. Right now, in the context explored by this short course, gamification is the use of game elements in non-game contexts to engage users or change behaviour.

By non-game contexts we mean, simply, not as part of a traditional game. What kind of game elements are we talking about? Continue reading Gamification with Dr Kevin Werbach

The Silent Age, Episode 1

I’ve just finished playing Episode 1 of The Silent Age, an amazingly cool point and click adventure with a really straightforward interface, simple but distinctive art design, and interestingly mysterious story.

I love this artwork: stylish, simple, emotive.
I love this artwork: stylish, simple, emotive.

It is made by House on Fire, a Danish indie studio. What is the game about? In their words,  The Silent Age is a minimalistic 2-D point-and-click adventure game for smartphones, and especially tablets, in which you use time travel to solve puzzles. The adventure takes you back and forth between present day 1972 and an unsettling future in 2012. Based on my play through, that’s a good summary. Without wanting to give away too much, the time travel mechanic is what makes this game really stand out. If a problem can’t be solved in the here and now, then maybe it can be solved in a different time. Continue reading The Silent Age, Episode 1