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What is Gamification and why do we care?

Gamification in Virtual Reality

Generally speaking we could translate gamification to adding fun and motivation. Over the last decade or so the word game has become something only nerds do. But in recent years bigger companies realized, that adding fun makes their products more aspirational to the general public.

 

Let’s examine a few real world examples:

  • A real world example for adding gamification to a product you can see in supermarkets. To motivate the buyers, they hand you vouchers at the counter to come back for more the next time you visit. 
  • Another example is McDonald’s. Their app lets customers collect points for every visit which they can trade in for a free item at their shops which then makes you feel happy.
  • Teachers use gamification a lot to get their students motivated. Students can collect stars for a beautiful handwriting, extra good work or great discussion input for example. And the super motivating teachers would give you a voucher for skipping homework for every 10 cards or so. You get the idea.

 

But why do we need Gamification for VR trainings?

Set yourself back into your childhood and try to remember how you learned new skills. Imagine that your parents bought you a toy hammer. You played with it, tried eating it, tried throwing it around. Your parents probably encouraged you to use it the right way and you got excited when you finally figured it out. You probably didn’t stop hammering until your parents got exhausted but that’s a whole different story. With that, you learned a new skill that you memorized for the rest of your life. Virtual trainings are similar in that way. We create virtual worlds, give you tools and teach you how to use them and just like your parents encourage you with a little treat. Gamification is the treat that motivates to stay longer and train harder and have fun while learning.

 

Training easily

Let’s be honest. Learning a new skill is not always that fun. When you are forced into a situation that is difficult to master, it seems easy to say “I don’t want to learn this”. Be it for a new job or a new situation in your private life that you need to tackle. But with gamification in virtual worlds we can actually teach you while you are having fun, and we think this is the right way of learning. No matter how difficult or boring your task is, with the right gamification you will always feel satisfied learning something new.

 

A Gamification example in VR

You are just starting out as a cleanroom operator for a pharmacy company and your first task will be disinfecting surfaces in a cleanroom. Learning this in real life is a hard task and you never get the feeling of satisfaction as you don’t have any visual feedback what is happening – but in VR we have the possibilities to show you where you may have missed dangerous germs during disinfection. When you kill all germs, the feeling of satisfaction will be much bigger as we can visualize the germs that you may have missed. What's even more motivating is when you get a reward for consolidating your experience after successfully completing several tries.

 

Gamification in a Nutshell

Give someone a fun toy to play with, and if they enjoy using it, they keep playing until they mastered it – they've learned a new skill.
Humans tend to long for entertainment at all times and gamification delivers that.

 

Wrap up: It’s important to understand that gamification enhances the user's experience in VR.
The real magic is how gamification is implemented. In order for it to work, it needs to trigger the right impulses in your brain to come back for more and aiming at becoming a better human through our DeepTrainings.