The Loop

Every game has a loop. A need is presented, the hero attempts to solve the need, there is a problem or conflict, the hero defeats or solves the problem, and there is a reward.

World of Warcraft was brilliant in creating interesting gaming loops. Some of the loops were short, 1 minute battles, and some of the loops are hour long raids with 20 other people taking on harder and harder boss monsters. There was failure in the loop, but the failure rarely made the player give up completely because the loop was fun, the rewards were great, and the player was given the tools to solve the problem.

When it comes to healthy living the loop is broken. The work is often hard, the time between rewards and effort is weeks or months, and the tools to solve the problem are often mysterious.

I propose the health industry needs a gaming loop. One that motivates “players” to move toward achieving health in a fun, engaging, rewarding, and with obvious steps.