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Reddit user Hoser117 accidentally explains addicting reward mechanics on a thread of why football > basketball

Stashed in: Basketball, Football, Reddit!, Instagram!, Awesome, Growth Hacks!, gamification

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The last paragraph made me think of the Diablo 3 vs Diablo 2 blog post:

Form the last paragraph:

Therefor, the build up is huge, and each play is massively important. The way the game works (you get 4 tries for 10 yards or you turn the ball over to the other team) makes EVERY play hugely important.


You tell me LeBron got 34 points in a game, I can recall like 5 buckets, you tell me a receiver had 7 catches for 140 yards and a touchdown and I can remember all of it, including that seemingly routine, but ridiculously important 9 yard catch he had in double coverage on 3rd and 8.

Basically basketball is more a constant drip feed of small rewards while football is a bunch of chances at a big reward.

For startups, the lesson may be that a 10% chance to get a prize is more addictive than collecting ten tokens to cash in for a prize. The uncertainty and chance really hits the reward center of our lizard brains.

Each small 10% chance is a small hit with a a huge burst at the end. Conversely, getting one token isn't as rewarding due to the predictability of it. The reward center isn't as involved until the end.

It's like on PandaWhale. You could give me Props till the cows come home, but what I really crave is someone who will comment on something I say. :)

so comments are like your Brawndo?

Yessir. And thank you for that. I shall reward you with a props and a comment back!

For sure that's what makes Instagram so compelling on a mobile device. Most pics get love but unless it's something special OR there is a call to action not a lot of comments happen.

my. 02

Tom, that's well said.

It does feel good to get hearts on Instagram.

But the lack of comments makes Instagram feel very superficial.