Friday, February 08, 2013

Game Of Books

Every book you read earns you points and rewards.

My wife found this and has started her qualifying statistics.  She has not even come remotely close to entering all the books she has read and is already a Grandmaster.  Which means something, somehow, when the game starts.  One gets points for reading about detectives, family life, historical settings, military campaigns - all kinds of stuff.  I think part of the purpose is to encourage children to read - which is why a librarian with 35 years' experience has such an advantage in Game of Books.

I cynically observed that the people playing would be those children who were already going to read lots of books, so no value-added there.  But upon further review, boys do pay more attention once you start keeping score, and checking out ways to level up in multiple categories with one book is right up their alley.  It might work.


Glowing Face Man said...

If this were widely adopted, it would incentivize authors to create crappy books engineered to level up as many categories as possible.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Hmm. If the game persists as well as D&D or Call of Duty, that might indeed happen. I think that would be a mixed result rather than a pure negative, though. People would take an interest in writing books who might not have otherwise considered it. Crappy or not, that leads to some reflection about the elements of story and the difficulty in completing one.

Dubbahdee said...

There is actually much thought being given to "gamification." in marketing, education and other fields where persuasion, engagement, learning and engagement are important. Building websites, business models, lesson plans, etc around the building blocks of games (such as keeping score, etc) invites a higher level of involvement. It is, apparently, a fairly effective strategy.

Boston is a hotbed of gamification, led by a young fella named Seth Priebatsch. He lays out some of his theories in a TED video called "The Game Layer on Top of the World."

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Thanks for the link.

I think we have undervalued both genes and incentives for decades in explaining human behavior. We really like the idea that we decide to do the right thing because of our self-wonderfulness.