Gotta catch ‘em all: The effects of game mechanics on usage intensity and user experience in gamification
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- Master of Science 
The present paper examines gamification and which effects the common game mechanics missions, contest, streaks and luck have on consumers. Specifically, the paper examines how these game mechanics influence usage intensity and user experiences through the mediators flow and stress. Moreover, the study investigates if and how gamification increases the likelihood of becoming addicted to a gamified application in order to create awareness of the potential ethical issues regarding gamified design. The research was conducted through two studies. Study 1 was an ethnographic study of Pokémon Go among brand community members in Oslo, Norway. Study 2 provided quantitative triangulation of the ethnographic findings through a survey among Pokémon Go users (N = 1,540). Results found that the usage intensity of a gamified application increased significantly from flow and stress. While flow enhanced the user experience, stress diminished it. Gamification also increased the likelihood of developing an addiction to the gamified application, mediated by flow and stress. The game mechanics missions, contests and good luck induced flow, while streaks created a fear of missing out, and bad luck led to frustration. Discussion of the current findings focuses on their contribution to extending academic knowledge of gamification’s effects, and managerial guidelines for designing gamification in accordance with business objectives. Our findings suggest utilizing contests and missions for objectives related to user experiences, such as improving user satisfaction and customer-brand relationships. Objectives related to usage intensity, such as stimulating micro-transactions or ad revenue, is best served through the implementation of luck and streaks.
Masteroppgave(MSc) in Master of Science in Strategic Marketing Management - Handelshøyskolen BI, 2019