Saturday, 21 December 2013

12 Apps to Gamify All Aspects of Your Life

Image courtesy of cote on Flickr.
This is a list of apps which gamify different aspects of people’s lives.  The ways they do this are interesting and varied.  From encouraging children to help out around the house by it allowing them to win rewards and
level up their RPG character, to motivating you to go to the gym with the ultimatum of giving your money to other gym-goers.  From apps that help you reach your goals by completing quests and defeating your personal ‘bad guys’, to motivating your workforce to complete projects.  These apps are, in general, a very simplistic form of Gamification.  The form that people usually have issues with; involving badges and leader boards.  However, some of them are great uses of Gamification and show how varied its uses can be.

Self-Improvement/Task Management

  1. SuperBetter – An app that helps you reach your goals.  You build strength in four areas: social, emotional, mental and physical.  The app enables you to complete quests (such as finishing a workout), defeat bad guys (such as the self-critic) and get the support of allies (real friends) to achieve ‘epic wins’.  The game is built on the principles of positive psychology and their aim is to make players feel better for playing, not keep playing. 
  2. EpicWin – This app aims to help you to ‘level-up your life’.  It adds a role playing twist to to-do lists.  Completing quests (such as doing chores, sending an email, going to the gym) develops your character, gains experience points, earns riches and more. 
  3. HabitRPG – This is similar to both apps above, but works on the principle that repetition builds habits.  You can choose what habits you want to develop or get rid of in several categories: ‘Habits’, ‘Dailies’ and ‘Todos’.  You get points for doing positive things and lose them for doing negative things or not doing positive things.  You can use these points to get rewards, which you can define or improve your weapons and armour. 


Image courtesy of teamstickergiant on Flickr.
  1. Chore Wars – This is an RPG for completing chores.  Every chore completed earns the player experience points which cause the players to level up.  You can create groups for households and workplaces and assign different rewards for completing different chores (such as pocket money or choosing the film/TV show on Saturday night).  The character classes change to reflect the chores that have been completed. 
  2. HighScore House – This works like Chore Wars, but without the fantasy RPG style.  It is also intended for parents.  Set up chores and rewards and the whole family can earn points, badges and stars.  The parents have their own dashboard, so they are in control of doling out points and rewards.  This one is still in beta mode. 
  3. ChoreMonster – This is very similar to HighScore House - but with monsters!  Kids can earn points and monsters for completing chores that the parents define and verify and then spend them on treats.  It is also available now and not in the beta stage. 


  1. Gym-Pact – This app uses the GPS on your smart phone to check you are going to the gym.  Then it rewards you or punishes you with REAL money for going or not going.  You set up how much you are willing the app to deduct from your bank balance for not going, but this money goes into the pockets of people who did go.  On the other hand, if you are a regular gym-goer, you could earn money for something you would have done anyway. 
  2. Nike Plus GPS – This one is for runners.  It allows you to log your distance, calories burned and so on.  You can also activate PowerSongs to help you reach the finish line.  Post your workout to Facebook and you will hear real-time cheers from likes and comments as you run.  You can also challenge yourself to beat others or your own personal bests to earn badges and achievements. 

Work (Performance and Project Management)

  1. – A way for managers to recognise team and individual achievements, in real-time, socially.  They can give custom badges as well as ‘real’ rewards such as Amazon gift vouchers.  It summarises performance and managers can coach employees live. 
  2. DueProps – Describes itself as a peer appreciation game for workplaces.  Co-workers can offer gratitude to one another, which could make them happier, more engaged and more productive.  Each ‘prop’ has a brief description and a number of points associated to it, which form a leader board.  You can also complete challenges.  Props include Einstein, for intelligence and originality and Class Act for handling a situation with professionalism, class and style. 
  3. RedCritter Tracker – This app turns completing projects into a game.  When someone completes an important task, they earn a badge and reward points.  These can be spent in company reward stores to get gift cards, to lunch with executives.  They list the benefits of Gamification as being:

  • Increases employee productivity
  • Increases quality of work
  • Improves employee morale
  • Increases employee retention
  • Creates an exciting work environment
  • It's easy to get started just visit

Personal Finances

  1. Personal Finance – This app aims to consolidate all of your financial information in one, user-friendly place.  It is useful to budget, track and manage your money.  You are scored on how financially fit you are and it gives you tips and tasks to improve this level.  You can see visually what you spend, what on and how often.  You can also choose goals and budgets and it helps encourage you to stick to them. 

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  2. Gamification is the application of game-design elements and game principles in non-game contexts. Gamification commonly employs game design elements which are used in so called non-game contexts in attempts to improve user engagement, organizational productivity flow learning, employee recruitment and evaluation, ease of use and usefulness of systems physical exercise, traffic violations, and voter apathy, among others. A review of research on gamification shows that a majority of studies on gamification find positive effects from gamification. However, individual and contextual differences exist.
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