Gamification theory is the concept of using game-based mechanics, aesthetics, and game thinking such as conflict, competition, and cooperation to engage people, motivate action, promote learning, and solve problems. The mechanics of playing a game include levels, earning badges, point systems, leader boards, and time constraints. Although crucial building blocks to the process of gamification, mechanics alone are insufficient to turn a normal activity into an experience that is game-like and engaging. In order for gamification to be fully utilized, player types, inerface and game types, as well as motivation theory must also be taken into consideration and thoroughly executed.


Every person exhibits some traits from all four player types, but most people tend to display characteristics and embody one type more than any others. LifeQuest takes into consideration all player types which helps us to create interactive apps that anyone can engage with and find exciting and fulfilling. The four player types as defined by Richard Bartle are:

  • Explorer: Enjoys the discovery of nooks and crannys and problem solving

  • Fighter: Driven by competition and the need to defeat others

  • Achiever: Needs to be at the top of the Leader Board by using all the skills they have collected

  • Socializer: Working in teams, building relationships, and being recognized is their goal

Interface & Game Types

Without engaging graphics or a well-designed experience, gamification cannot be successful. The user interface, or the look and feel of an experience, is an essential element in the process of gamification. The interface, although visually stimulating, is designed to help define the game type for the user.  Understanding the type of game being played helps the user to understand the goal and to fully engage in the experience. Game types include: 

  • Competition 
  •  - competing against others, the clock, or your past performance
  • Chance
  •  - taking a risk or trying to beat the odds     
  • Role Play
  •  - simulations or stepping outside your identity


The simple inroduction of a goal adds purpose and intentional focus as the user visually measures their progression.  We purposely build intrinsic and extrinsic motivators into our apps so as to initially grab the users attention through leveling up and winning badges, and hold their attention as they are internally driven and fulfilled through curiosity and success. The theory of Motivation includes: 

  • Challenge: Created through variable difficulty levels, multiple level goals, hidden information, and randomness

  • Fantasy: Including fantasies help to provoke vivid images, thus improving the user's memory of the material

  • Curiosity: Believeing that there is more to know, do, or explore, a user is motivated to seek out new things  

Want to add gamification to your next project?