Using Achievements to drive a game system
Here are a few ideas for future directions that I was going to send to @DJPaul directly, but which I think might be of general interest and could spark off some discussion:
http://interactive.usc.edu is the site for the interactive media students, and i’m using it as a kind of live testbed for a “transmedia experience” class that i’m teaching in the fall to incoming Cinema students (which will be a separate site entirely). That project will go a lot deeper into various game mechanics, and might use both Achievements and Cubepoints, or some kind of custom mod of Achievements.
Here are a few things I’m looking to do, for general interest and for @DJPaul to incorporate into future builds (if they’re not in there already):
- Conditional statements – I’d like to be able to check if a user has a given achievement, and hide content (say, on a Page or in the Activity feed) from users who haven’t unlocked particular achievements. I’d also like to hide notifications conditionally this way, too. I think this might already be possible, so if anyone knows how to do it, please post here!
- Multiple point dimensions – I’m inspired here by games like Echo Bazaar. In EB, players earn points across several D&D-like character “qualities” (e.g. Watchful, Persuasive, Shadowy, etc); I’d like to figure out how to add a few fields that would allow me to dole out points across similar character qualities like this — e.g. Unlocking Achievement X gives the player 5 Intelligence points, 3 Charisma points, and 0 Stamina points, etc. Helps for building granular profiles. This info could then be used for some more conditional statements, to customize layout, content, and even the visibility of other users.
- Combo Achievements – I’d also like to be able to award players achievements based on combinations of other achievements they’ve already unlocked. E.g. if player unlocks achievements A, B, and C, they unlock the “combo” achievement X.
- More user roles for Achievements creation – I’d like to be able to promote users to Editor and allow them to post achievements. Ideally, I’d like all users to be able to post achievements, but have them kept in some kind of “draft” queue for review by admins/editors.
- Timed achievements – this one is pretty simple. Just something to calculate the duration in minutes/days from account creation, so that players can acrue achievements and points based on how long they’ve been on the site.
- Notification control – I’d like to be able to toggle whether an achievement notification is visible to all, visible only to others who have received the achievement, visible to a particular group, or visible to none.
This is just for starters — I’ll be doing as much dev as possible on these over the next few months (building the IMD site was a serious crash course in all things BuddyPress), but I wanted to get them out there to see if anyone else is already working along similar lines — or, of course, if @DJPaul has already thought of these and is about to release them!
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