Alper Cugun – Love in Times of Gamification

Not long ago digital games were something only a very specific group of people played and loved. Due to technological and cultural changes, new forms of gaming emerged and attracted a wide range of users. Most of us have played Farmville on Facebook.

And today people are playing traditionally analogue games like pictionary on their smartphones together with friends. This development is accompanied by a gamification of other areas of our lives. At NEXT Berlin 2012 Alper Cugun presented innovative examples of “love in times of gamification”.

Gamification refers to the transfer of game elements to non-game contexts, e.g. dating websites. Getting to know each other while watching a movie or eating is a common and established concept, which Okcupid transferred to the digital world.

Cugun’s presentation quickly exceeds this rather common form of gamification. It shows how the latest mobile dating games manage to involve the sense of touch allowing users to digitally, but somehow physically touch each other. In order to create this kind of innovation you need great staff with a “gamer mentality”, as Cugun calls it: people who try again and again and again until they finally achieve their goal.