Gamifying games

by Bernard De Koven on August 10, 2012

You know about gamification? Yes, I know, it’s a buzz-word of a surprisingly wide-range of repute. And some of that aforementioned repute is of admirable width, in deed.

Anyhow, I was thinking how you could look at what I’ve been doing all these years (see, for example, my collection of pointless games) as a kind of, well, gamification of games. And, when you think about it, of all the things we do, what more gamificatable than games? Even when you don’t think about it. They’re just games, you know. And if we can make them even moreso, especially if we can make them even more fun for more people, well, hey, I say, what the actual hey.

Let’s take, for example, volleyball. (Yes, I’ve already taken that very game for example in my tongue-in-somewhere article on the evolution of volleyball.) And let’s think like gamifiers about, in particular, scoring, because that’s usually the first thing that gamifiers think about. And suppose you wanted to gamify it just enough so people might focus just a tad more on creating a more accessible Well-Played-like volleyball experience.

So, OK, so how about this, which I will now call Well-Played-Volleyball-Variation-One, or, WPVV1, so to speak.


Every time the ball crosses the net, it is worth one more point to the team that wins the volley.

You see the conceptual cunningness here, of course. So, on the one hand, you want to keep volleying, increasing the potential value of the score, while, on the other hand, you’re just waiting to make the kill-shot. And when you do make that kill-shot, instead of killing, it gets returned with equally murderous intent, increasing by yet one more conceptual point the latent lusciousness of victory whilst simultaneously drawing ever nearer to the point of well-playedhood.


And then there are these:

Your etceteras welcome.

Not just volleyball, of course. Any sport or game could be further gamified for a variety of purposes – mine was to focus on making the deep fun of the game more accessible to a wider range of players. Let us crowdsource further possibilities. You can be the crowd.


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