The Gamification of Gaming

I recall the days when my brother and I would gather around our original Playstation and duke it out. Not with our fists (although that sometimes happened), but with our gaming skills. His dominant genres were always Racing and Shooter games, but I kicked his ass in other games like Tekken and Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater. There were no outside pressures, no need to keep track of who was winning more games than the other overall *cough* even though it was me *cough*. It was more a case of “I’m bored. Army Men 3D?” to which the correct response was “Righto, why not.”

Them graphics.

Them graphics.

Because we were blessed with an awesome and generous older brother, we had a chipped Playstation, and hundreds of copied game discs, so there was no shortage of options. We’d drop a game in, have a few rounds until one of us got sick of losing, or until both of us got sick of the game, and we’d then try a different one. But that’s all it was; playing games because they were fun, and some short-lived bragging rights. Going solo, if I thought a game was captivating enough, and that it was easy enough to accomplish, I would go for 100% completion. All the best times, all the collectibles. If the game was just okay, I would move on. No point in wasting my time over it.

Now, in my mid-20s, I’ve noticed a big change to the way many of us play games. Continue reading

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