Gamification Is The Latest iGaming Craze in 2019, But Is It Here To Stay?
The whole iGaming industry is under the gamification buzz, and it’s definitely a good thing for several different reasons, but is it just a temporary flare or is it the new milestone in the world of online gambling?
Judging by the way things unfold in 2019, it surely is serious…
…as BetSoft’s Max Quest: Wrath of Ra recently grabbed numerous prestigious awards , due to highly innovative features. Words like “transformative”, “stunning”, and “game-changing” are often heard when this game is concerned, but it all boils down to it being one of the important flagship games for gamification in iGaming.
What Is Gamification?
Frankly speaking, gamification is a means of taking a CRM, a website, or an entire online community or some other enterprise system and integrating various kinds of game mechanics which will motivate the user to participate, adopt, and become loyal.
It is an organic bond that turns the user into a fan, and ultimately, advocate.
How Gamification Came To Be
Sure, it’s constantly on the lips of the entire industry, but have you ever wondered how it really became reality?
The term “Gamification” was actually coined by a British computer programmer Nick Pelling. At the time, he was tired of the computer games industry, and was fiddling with ways of speeding up all different activities and transactions one might have on all sorts of commercial electronic devices such as ATM machines, mobile phones, vending machines, and so on.
He then came up with what he describes as a “deliberately ugly word” that described “applying game-like accelerated user interface design to make electronic transactions both enjoyable and fast.” This was way back in 2002, and we’ll have to agree that it was a little too early…
Bunchball was the first modern gamification platform as it dates back to 2005, and it paved the way for further gamification endeavors such as the Foursquare app that was launched in 2009 and it had us all collect badges and aim for more and more achievements.
These were all just the beginning…
Gamification and iGaming
It was the early 1990s when the iGaming industry took its first baby steps. Of course, the concept was a great one, but it was also greatly limited by the Internet and computers. It was until a much faster advance of technology took place that the interest for iGaming in general got increased massively. Nowadays, billions of people play at online betting venues…
Most changes in the iGaming industry take place due to the ever-changing regulations in various countries around the world, but such changes have very little to no effect on the user experience.
Gamification is the latest trend in iGaming, but it is only natural, as it is an integral part of video games and social media, as well. People have grown accustomed to it, and they have also learned to expect it at most areas of life now.
It motivates the punters to keep playing by stimulating them with reaching new levels, financial and non-financial rewards, and so on. Gamification takes the whole online gambling concept to new heights as the games now come with unique animations, music, sound effects, power-ups and other elements. Gamification also demystifies gambling to a certain degree as it introduces experience and skills and puts them up on the pedestal, so that iGaming isn’t all about luck anymore.
The New Approach
Considering the popularity of sports betting everywhere around the globe, online betting venues rely on loyalty that gets built up through family influence and peers, as virtually nothing provides such strong impact on behaviour changes among players.
The gambling industry now shifts towards fan behaviour which is what film, music and video gaming industries are based, and gamification is observed as an important factor for brand loyalty among online betting venues.
Gamified Slots And Casinos
Video games and casino games are both meant for entertainment, but for decades these were two completely different concepts. Video games called for skill, while casino games had results based on chance. Slots now have interactive storylines and they have come a long way from the slot machines in brick-and-mortal casinos.
Casino game developers have started learning from their colleagues from the video game industry, and started incorporating mechanisms that were previously impossible. Of course, all of this wasn’t an overnight change, and it all required years of hard work and research so that gamification could finally take place in iGaming as well.
There are even new casinos popping up, specially designed with a focus on gamification. You can create an avatar, and there are maps to explore, progress to make, just like playing any good old video game… but you can still make some money while doing so! Isn’t that a fun prospect?
Remember the times when online casino involved just clicking away on the “spin” button? Well, these times are about to change, as the new breed of casino games provides the opportunity of fighting enemies , earning precious experience points, and leveling up.
The switch from luck-based to skill-based experience takes place because the target audience has changed, and the iGaming industry needs to follow this trend. As the Millennials and Gen Z are the main target here and they prefer more interactivity in their gaming experiences, online casinos and software developers conform to these needs in a rather rapid manner.
Can Responsible Gaming Benefit From Gamification?
Let’s put fun aside for a moment and focus on another important aspect of iGaming, and that’s responsible gaming. Gambling addiction is a serious issue, and it affects millions of people, so the logical question is: can gamification reduce addiction and help responsible gaming level up (pun intended)?
Exclusions and limitations can help to a certain degree, but in the end, they are actually a form of self-punishment, so there must be better ways of dealing with gambling addiction than these methods. They aren’t fun, and in most cases, they aren’t really a long-term solution.
Gamification could be of great help here as it could create natural social connections between players and prevent them from becoming addicted in the first place. Casinos could make their customers play more responsibly by relying on a healthy environment created by gamification traits.
This is an area that needs a lot more research but shows great potential even at its beginning stages…
What Does The Future Hold?
iGaming industry has always been an exciting one, always shifting, always changing, always introducing new features and concepts, so we’re pretty sure that the forthcoming future will be rather turbulent, especially when we focus on the latest developments involving gamification.
Gamification will continue leading the pack when trends in online gambling industry are concerned, as it adds the much-needed additional element of excitement, skill, and competitiveness to the redundant and stagnant world of casino games.
The future of gambling certainly looks bright, as gamification changes the rules completely, and introduces a whole new ballgame. Millennials and Gen Z have taken over, and their growing needs for more interactivity in online casino games have brought upon us some massive changes.
The best thing about gamification in iGaming is probably the fact that has introduced a completely new excitement, while the overall gambling experience has become much more personal.