Gamification Ecosystems: Current State and Perspectives

Gamification Ecosystems: Current State and Perspectives

Velimir Štavljanin (University of Belgrade, Serbia) and Miroslav Minović (University of Belgrade, Serbia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-0905-9.ch004
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Gamification is hot topic today. Many organizations consider the application of gamification in their processes. Therefore, to implement gamification, it's necessary to know all elements and their relationships that comprise gamification ecosystem. The aim of this chapter is to clarify all details related to that ecosystem. At the beginning we defined gamification and similar concepts. Next, we introduced different types of gamification. One of the key parts of the chapter describes various game elements taxonomies and most used game elements or building blocks of gamification. Player as an inseparable part of that ecosystem is described through player identification, player types and player life cycle. It's clear now that there is lot of different approaches available for application of games in non-leisure context. Rather than to talk about one kind of game or game system, we decided to use term ecosystem in order to be clearer and more consistent with our approach. That is to integrate different approaches and orchestrate different tools in order to make them work together.
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The term gamification is not easy to define, given that gamification to different people means different things (Zichermann & Cunningham, 2011, p. xiv). Difficulties in defining came in because of the different disciplines in which the gamification is defined, such as education, information technology, business and marketing. Another source of the definition problem is mixing of this issue with the game, serious game, as well as some other terms.

Deterding et al. (2011) define the gamification as the use of design elements characteristic for games in non-game contexts.

Zichermann i Cunningham (2011, p. xiv) has defined gamification as the process of game-thinking and game mechanics to engage users and solve problems.

In an interview that Richard Bartle held with Andrzej Marczewski (2012) on gamification, the modern use of gamification is defined as taking techniques from games and applying them to non-games.

Werbach and Hunter (2012, p. 26) has defined gamification as use of game elements and game-design techniques in non-game contexts.

According to Kapp (2012, p. 10) gamification is using game-based mechanics, aesthetics and game thinking to engage people, motivate action, promote learning, and solve problems.

Gamification from the perspective of marketing services (Huotari and Hamari 2012) is defined as the process of enhancing a service with affordances for gameful experiences in order to support user’s overall value creation.

Gamification (Koster, 2014, p. 50) attempts to use the trappings of games (reward structures, points, etc.) to make people engage with more product offerings.

Asked whether gamification involves creating game, the authors Werbach and Hunter (2012, p. 25) said that the result of the gamification might not be game; it is a process which has game elements, but has no gameplay. When gamification process has gameplay too, then that game is called a “serious game” or “game with a purpose”. The same opinion is shared by Richard Bartle (Marczewski, 2012). Deterding et al. (2011) noted that the difference between serious game and gamification is that the game represents a serious full-fledged game that is used for non-entertainment purposes, while gamification represents the incorporation of elements of the game. The authors note that the line between serious game and gamification is often blurry.

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