New trends in technology often affect the business world. In fact, just about every industry is deeply connected to budding technology, from education to infrastructure. With each new development, human dependency and interaction with technology deepen.
But one of the most interesting new trends in technology, and in business, is gamification. Gamification is bridging an activity with gaming, including adding elements of competition, scoring, or even traditional video game mechanics. In other words, gamification is the art of turning anything into a game.
It’s had huge implications for the business world—and in a variety of sectors and forms of application. That’s because gamification can be used for just about anything, whether dramatizing an already-entertaining activity or making something like learning a bit more interesting. Already, 70% of Forbes’ Global 2000 companies are using it and, by 2025, Global Newswire predicts the industry will be worth £26 billion.
But what does it actually look like? Let’s take a closer look at some of the biggest forms of gamification on the market.
Gamification Within Gaming
Unsurprisingly, gamification has left its mark on the gaming sector in a variety of ways. First, it is a way to make existing games more interesting. Take poker, for example. Worldwide, it’s an incredibly popular card game, with many players opting for virtual formats which they can play online. This lets them access real money games along with tournaments, daily challenges, and even home games with friends.
But poker is a pretty straightforward card game compared to traditional PC and console games. Gamification is a way for poker companies to diversify and enliven traditional real-money games. For example, PokerStars offers VR poker, which lets players step into imaginative new worlds to play Texas Hold’em. This creates an even more dynamic and memorable experience—even if regular old poker is still gaming.
However, some traditional video games rely on gamification to add texture and depth to the standard gameplay. For example, Red Dead Redemption, an adventure game set in the Wild West, actually lets players try their hand at poker. This lets them acquire more money and resources for in-game purchases. Viewed in this way, gamification can add more context to the story and more challenges for gamers.
Gamification in Retail & Fashion
Gamification within gaming is interesting—but applications outside of that industry can be far more unexpected. One of the biggest trends for fashion retailers has been gamification and these intersections run the gamut. Let’s cover two examples.
First, there are fashion brands that jump into the world of gaming feet first. In other words, their fashion lines are digitized and then worn in virtual gaming worlds. For example, high fashion retailer Balenciaga offers digital outfits for Fortnite players, available exclusively in the game. It’s literally turning real-life clothes into gaming garb.
Second, other high fashion retailers like Louis Vuitton have released gaming apps. The fashion house’s Louis app lets buyers play a little bear in a highly detailed visual world where they complete puzzles. As Louis, they can experience a new type of fashion experience, collecting NFTs and gaining access to exclusive real-life events and perks.
Gamification as Education
One of the most diverse applications of gamification is in education. This isn’t surprising because, for centuries, teachers have sought out imaginative ways to make their lessons more memorable. Gaming, as it happens, creates deeper interactions between learners and their content. This has made gamification popular as an educational resource for academic institutions around the world.
But companies are also leaning on gamification to help educate employees. Rather than onboarding new employees with long meetings and conferences, some companies are keeping the focus on fun. They’re paying developers to create unique gaming experiences based on their company, its culture, and expectations.
Similarly, some language learning apps are also creating broader gamification experiences. That’s because gamification has been tied to deeper forms of learning. In other words, learners who obtain new knowledge by gaming, whether being scored competitively or advancing to a new level, tend to remember what they’ve learned.