8/5-2016 – By Marius Flagstad
Just a short blog about a really good reward system that I recently found in an app I’m using.
One of the hardest things to do when creating an app is making your users come back for more. Making them want to open your app to do what ever you want them to do. And if your running a free version of the app you would want them to watch a commercial or two from time to time without making it boring. Because if it gets boring they will stop using the app. To be able to do this you will need to create an app with almost a magical formula, where the users feels that their time is not wasted when watching a commercial or playing your game.
That’s not an easy task to do, but when I played a game called The Walking Dead: No Man’s Land. It kinda hit me how well they have NAILED this reward system. They manage to trigger exactly this behavior in me, where I want to watch commercials. I have played a lot of games on my phone but I can hands down tell you that I have never watch as many commercials as I have in this game. It just works, and I don’t mind watching them either.
So how do they do it?
It is in our nature to want to be rewarded. People love receiving things and this is what the walking dead app does so well. But it’s important to not just give out random things and say: If you watch this commercial and waste 30 seconds of your life you will get these awesome rewards. No, you should make it so that it’s the players choice of picking the rewards and when (if) they should watch the commercial. It should be interactive and the player should get a feeling that he made a good or bad choice when picking his reward.
The Walking Dead game is built around surviving, and you have a group of people that you send out on a quest (that takes about 5-10 minutes to finish). When the quest is completed you get to the loot screen where you are presented with 9 chests and 3 keys (the keys are found throughout the quest). On the example below you can see that 2 of these 9 chests have special rewards in them. One is a silver chest with better rewards, and one is a golden chest with the best rewards possible.
So you can then start to pick three of the chests to open. And lucky me because I found the silver chest (green weapon). Now you have the possibility to continue playing the game as usual (and giving up on opening the remaining chests) OR you can watch a video commercial and get 3 more keys.. If I watch this commercial and get the 3 new keys I know that I have 3 / 6 = 50% chance of getting the golden chest. That’s a sweet deal! (or at least my mind is telling me that).
So I watch the commercial and get three more keys. Time to start opening some more chests.
Well, crap… Though luck. I didn’t find the chest. BUT I could buy the last 3 keys needed to open the chests. I know for a fact that one of them is golden! So did I do it? Well, no. Because I don’t like spending money in the game, but I’m sure a lot of people would do it.
But that fact still stands. I did watch a commercial and I actually don’t know how many commercials I have watched in this game. I do it every time its time to opening some chests,, and I am happy to do it because of the rewards. And also because of the excitement around opening the rewards.
So there you have it. A brilliant reward system if you ask me.
I don’t know about any other games or apps that makes users want to watch a commercial AND potentially trigger them to use money at the same time.
And you can of course take and use this system in your own apps, because its a really simple system to adapt and probably also improve even further. I’m also pretty sure that you can use it one way or another in apps that are not gaming related. Only your imagination sets the limit.