Talk about a mixed bag.
A major initiative when I joined the Keno team was implementing gamified systems to increase engagement and generally add value and delight for the user.
While only a few of our experimental features made it to production, below you'll find a few of the concepts that our customers loved.
Wait, did I just win the lottery?
When I started on the Keno team, my first assignment was to review the winning experience.
If you happened to win, say, $1,000,000 in a game of Keno, the app would let you know with a small piece of size 12 type that said "Jackpot."
I thought we could do better.
Understanding the Journey
The scenarios in which a player experience this feature were varied and complex.
Throughout the process of building the winning experience, we used user flow diagrams to understand how we were affecting the customer journey.
Confetti, Fireworks, and Trumpets. Oh my!
I built a series of animations in After Effects for different tiers of wins, that celebrated how many numbers the customer had matched, and also how much money they had won.
I decided to recreate the live draw experience by showing your numbers being chosen in sequence. This built a sense of anticipation as you watched the numbers you chose land on your ticket. Only once that sequence was complete did you finally find out what you'd won.
Everyone's a winner
I didn't want the new winning experience to be limited to just the big winners - I wanted the players who received small to medium wins to feel good also.
For this reason, we created a flowchart of various scenarios that covered most win conditions in the game and a series of tiered celebration styles.
Unwrapping your present
We knew that some of our users didn't watch the games play out, so I designed a 'curtain' to cover up the winning tickets when the player returned.
When they tapped on the curtain, they'd experience the same awesome animations that they would have had they been present for the draw.
Climbing the ladder
The Keno ticket reacted when your win amount climbed, so the user was in a state of anticipation throughout the journey.
The Keno team had never implemented complex animation, so we knew we'd have to come up with an implementation strategy.
We also knew that at some point in the future, we'd want to build an Android app, so we wanted to find a technique that could be implemented in Android, too.
AirBNB's Lottie system allowed us to export our animations as JSON files, which could be run in iOS, Android, or React. It was a perfect solution for our problem.
This isn't the last you'll hear of Lottie - it became a cornerstone of our animation process.
More than just Money
For the most part, customers enjoyed Keno because they had a chance to win money. However, the odds were never really in their favour. For that reason, we wanted to reward them simply for engaging in Keno, even if they didn't win.
We decided to test implementing gamification mechanisms similar to those seen in many mobile games - players would earn badges and award trophies for their time spent with the Keno app. The hope was that these new reward mechanisms would encourage and reward our most engaged players.
And the winner is...
My overall goal with the awards was to make it feel similar to pin collecting. At any given time, the player could see what awards they had, which they were close to earning, and where the gaps in their collection were.
Drawing a line in the sand.
I chose an illustrative style for the awards as I wanted them to feel fun above all else. These are simply fun collectables, not serious gambling mechanisms.
You could earn awards at any time, so it was important they didn't interrupt the gameplay experience.
A quick, simple toast would reveal to the user that they'd earned their award.
A very 'awarding' experience
The Awards and Achievement system tested strongly with our users, who were very pleased to have a system that acknowledged their engagement with the app. Overall, the project was considered a success, although it's still yet to make its way into production.