Gamification mechanic Monday: finite versus infinite

Finite games have a distinct ending, infinite games keep on going indefinitely. In gamification design it is important to decide whether your design is intended to be finite or infinite. In a recent training program I ran the discussion became quite thorough about this point specifically. We were talking about gamification in HR and HR areas such as performance management and learning and development are typically ongoing. Yet, you can also apply finite games to focus in on specific goals or make time periods the distinctive factor.

If you look at sales gamification most sales people have the ongoing role of bringing in new business or building more business with existing customers. Their role doesn’t change, yet their targets are often monthly or quarterly. Gamification in this area can focus on a quest to sell specific campaigns more, or having adapted metrics based on the specialisation of the sales agents.

When designing infinite gamification, you may need to work with many more gamification mechanics over time to keep your design fresh and engaging. There would be short term gamification mechanics and long term evergreen elements. Keeping an element of surprise in an infinite design is always a good thing if you ask me.

How do you design differently for infinite and finite gamification?

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