Gaming work?

El­e­ments such as gam­i­fi­ca­tion are part of dig­i­tal­i­sa­tion and there­fore al­so the world of work. What does this term re­fer to, what does it mean and above all how can we use the con­cept cor­rect­ly? In or­der to cre­ate clar­i­ty, we asked the game de­vel­op­ers of www.koboldgames.ch, whose code wiz­ard and Trea­sury Man­ag­er, Ralf, an­swered our ques­tions.

You’re a Game De­sign­er. For many peo­ple, the word game still evokes cu­ri­ous as­so­ci­a­tions: dig­i­tal ball games, a re­mark­able de­nial of re­al­i­ty and un­washed teenagers. Of course this is just a sil­ly pre­con­cep­tion. Gam­ing en­cour­ages cog­ni­tive de­vel­op­ment and is specif­i­cal­ly used as a learn­ing method in ed­u­ca­tion. It al­so de­vel­ops both mo­tor and so­cial skills, on­line or in the play­ground.

To what ex­tent do you agree or dis­agree with the last state­ment?

It’s to­tal­ly ac­cu­rate. There have al­ready been many stud­ies on this top­ic, which clear­ly prove this. For me, an­oth­er im­por­tant point is mo­ti­va­tion. We all know that if we en­joy some­thing, we’re will­ing to in­vest more time, which ul­ti­mate­ly leads to more pos­i­tive re­sults and greater progress. So games (dig­i­tal and ana­logue) al­so have a mea­sure­able pos­i­tive im­pact on re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion, for ex­am­ple.

Dur­ing the course of dig­i­tal­i­sa­tion, much has changed re­gard­ing our per­cep­tion; the world is new, more com­plex and more di­verse. There’s more in­for­ma­tion and new ways of com­mu­ni­cat­ing and learn­ing. Where do you see the game or – to be more pre­cise – gam­i­fi­ca­tion in this con­text?

Each game is its own lit­tle world, de­fined by the rules of the game. As a Game De­vel­op­er, it’s my job to shape this world and its rules so that my play­ers en­joy the de­sired ex­pe­ri­ence. In the dig­i­tal sec­tor, I have more tools at my dis­pos­al with which to de­scribe, il­lus­trate and add mu­sic to this gam­ing world. Gam­ing can use the same ad­van­tages of dig­i­tal­i­sa­tion as oth­er me­dia. Rapid ac­cess ir­re­spec­tive of lo­ca­tion, pro­cess­ing large amounts of da­ta and bring­ing com­plex con­tent to life. But it is by no means con­fined to these. There are many ar­eas where the ana­logue el­e­ments of a game are es­sen­tial, such as in sport or a sand­pit, for ex­am­ple.

How do you han­dle an or­der from a cus­tomer who wants to use a gam­ing el­e­ment at a con­fer­ence or ex­hi­bi­tion, for ex­am­ple? What must you con­sid­er? How much pre­vi­ous knowl­edge does the cus­tomer re­quire?

The cus­tomer pri­mar­i­ly has ex­per­tise of their spe­cial­ist area and knowl­edge of their tar­get au­di­ence. As re­gards the gam­ing el­e­ments and tech­ni­cal pos­si­bil­i­ties, they don’t re­quire any pre­vi­ous knowl­edge. Dur­ing a joint work­shop, run by us, we look at these points and adapt them to the customer’s de­sired ob­jec­tives. This start­ing point then acts as the ba­sis for a cost es­ti­mate.

Isn’t gam­i­fi­ca­tion at a con­fer­ence sim­ply a dis­trac­tion from the ac­tu­al, im­por­tant con­tent?

I re­gard gam­i­fi­ca­tion at events as a use­ful ad­di­tion rather than a dis­trac­tion. A well-planned and po­si­tioned game can sup­port an event or se­lec­tive­ly pro­vide ex­cit­ing in­ter­ac­tion. It can even help fo­cus at­ten­tion on the main con­tent.

Why should a com­pa­ny de­cide to use gam­i­fi­ca­tion? Doesn’t it con­tra­dict se­ri­ous, ef­fi­cient work?

I be­lieve there’s huge po­ten­tial in terms of mo­ti­va­tion. Gam­i­fi­ca­tion doesn’t mean that con­tent is pre­sent­ed in a less se­ri­ous or in­ef­fi­cient man­ner. Rather, gam­i­fi­ca­tion means that an ex­ist­ing top­ic can be made ac­ces­si­ble in a dif­fer­ent way. It cre­ates emo­tion­al ex­pe­ri­ences that lead to a more sus­tained and mo­ti­vat­ed dis­cus­sion of the top­ic. The pos­si­ble busi­ness ap­pli­ca­tions range from team build­ing, through in­ter­nal com­mu­ni­ca­tions, da­ta col­lec­tion and process sim­pli­fi­ca­tion, to train­ing and gen­er­at­ing aware­ness.

Thank you so much for your time and the in­ter­est­ing in­sights, Ralf!

Image: Markus Spiske, raumrot.com CC0

Published 22.06.2017 © Brandsoul AG


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Francesca Kleinstück


Part of Generation Z and amateur-influencer. Doesn't only like to drink coffee - she has to.

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