New GI member research published in Frontiers in Computer Science shows that personalized gameful systems lead to higher task performance.
The article, “Validation of User Preferences and Effects of Personalized Gamification on Task Performance”, discusses the results from two studies with 252 participants. Players performed better and found a game more enjoyable when they could customize their experience by selecting game elements, compared to participants who had no opportunity to customize.
These results suggest that designers can improve the effectiveness and enjoyability of gameful systems, such as business apps that incorporate gameful elements, by offering personalized experiences based on an individual’s play preferences.
Personalization doesn’t always have to come from asking players to customize their experience; the authors, Dr. Gustavo Tondello, GI alum, and Dr. Lennart Nacke, Director of the HCI Games Group, previously used the Hexad model, which identifies different player preferences, to design personalized gameful systems.
Their study revealed that there is a significant correlation between a player’s choice of gameful design elements and their Hexad user type scores. However, the authors note “gameful designers should be aware that they must balance the game elements and how much they incentivize each user behavior, so that the business goals can be successfully promoted”.