A competition like any other game


In my last post, I looked at my reasons for participating in Gammify 2013,  which had very little to do with competing to win. It’s also far too simple to boil it down to a flat motivational reasoning  of “It’s the taking part that counts!” *yuck*

Players can be engaged in a number of different ways by appealing beyond competitive player motivations, even when the premise of the game is a competition. There are design choices that use actions across all four quadrants of Amy Jo Kim’s social verbs used in gamification and game design.

Whilst on the surface a competition  might seem limited in its appeal to the top-right quadrant, additional aspects in Gammify 2013 broaden its appeal over other kinds of actions that all kinds of players would enjoy. For example:

For the pioneers among us, those who like to explore. The “first ever” of anything catches our attention. The inaugural Gamificaiton World Championships offers that unexplored frontier and the chance to be among the first to try it out. The element of curiosity and novelty is kept throughout the site with limited details of the competition rounds and a forth unnamed judge.

For the eagle eyed collaborators, we may spot the way the competition has positioned itself as a way to advance the field as a whole.  A chance to share our expertise and experience with others sharing the same interest. There is also the tangible opportunity to meet  peers and leaders in the final, and the tantalizing chance to flash our people skills via the group challenge.

The format of the rounds will not be restricted to a certain “right” methodology or solution. So for those of us most concerned with expressing ourselves, every player will have the chance to bring their own unique  build, design and creation to the table.

Finally, for us competitive lot. We know the score, there will only be one. But even here, we’ll have noted the competition has been organised into three rounds. A structure that will ensure a greater pool of people beyond the winner to enjoy some level of achievement whether its the achievement of reaching the final or even getting past the first round.

So there you have at. Under the skin of Gammify competition, a game with some well rounded design choices meant to appeal to the different interactions and preferences across a spectrum of potential players. We wouldn’t expect anything less.

As the countdown to the competition nears, however, I wonder if further developments will be revealed. So will we see a few more social verbs in the quadrants activated, perhaps by:#

Admission to the competitors village. Like the Olympics village, except probably a lot less expensive to build. A virtual greeting space for all those who have now registered to mingle and eye-up the competition in a friendly, Olympian spirit kind of way of course.

The player selected award goes to. When the designs are in and the judges have deliberated, what do all the losers do except lick our wounds. Why we’ll laud over the power to vote on the outcome of course. What if the innovation award was selected via reviews and votes by the rest of the players. Thereby creating a way to draw on expertise and discussion from the group and keeping investment in the competition, even after bowing out.

If, either of these two things crop up in the eventual running of the competition, to the organisers of Gammify I’d like a special “Called It” badge, please.

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