How casinos are using gamification

Of all the industries that have changed, adapted and evolved due to technological influences, the video gaming industry is arguably at the top of the list. In the space of 20 years, video games have evolved from simple 2d to visuals that are almost indistinguishable from reality, and as a result is worth around a combined total of way over $100 billion.

Another industry that has taken full advantage of technological innovations is the casino industry, and is available through mobile devices, laptops and computers. Both of these industries are quite similar in the way that the product is entertainment through games, and as much as video games have been implementing casino elements, whether it be through mystery loot boxes or forms of gambling in some games, with each year, casino games are looking more like video games. The use of gamification by the casino industry is nothing new, but with each year is becoming frequent. It only takes a quick look at the top online casinos list from 6takarakuji to see this, if you go down looking at the casinos you’ll see aspects being borrowed from gaming. Everything from the logos / avatars through to the way the games are developed. In this article we’re going to look at a few of the gamification methods casinos are borrowing from gaming.

What is gamification and why is it being used?

In a nutshell, gamification is the use of elements commonly found in video games by the casino industry. It becomes quite clear when looking at statistics why the casino industry is using these elements; there are approximately 2.7 billion around the world, and an estimated 1.6 billion people who gamble online.

In recent years, there has been an increase crossover of people who play online video games and those who gamble, which basically means that the audiences of each industry are beginning to merge. Gamification is being used to make the gamers who are trying out online gambling feel more comfortable, and it is also being used to increase the entertainment value of casino games.


Leaderboards are perhaps the earliest example of gamification found in casino games. Historically, video games have always used leaderboards to track who has the highest scores, which gives the players something to beat or to aim towards, and this is seen since the implementation of arcade games such as Pacman.

Online casinos started using leaderboards to display who has won the most money, recent jackpot winners and people who have been with the site for the longest, and more. This sense of competition and the idea of achieving those things being possible is partly what makes playing the games so fun.


One of the latest implementations of video game elements to be used by online casinos, is that of plots or story lines. Some new slot games now have story lines that develop when players win a certain amount.

Story lines have been a video game element since 1981, by the iconic Donkey Kong arcade game, and now almost every video game has a story line. The reason this element has been so widely used and popular is because it makes the game immersive, provides depth to the characters and gives a player a reason to play.

Playable maps

One video game element that is synonymous with RPG’s (roleplaying games), is an open-world map that players can explore. This is another element that the casino industry is implementing in new slot games, especially on Japanese-styled casinos. Some online casinos now provide players with the opportunity to visit different maps on some of the newer games.

While this element is still quite simple and its infancy; the different maps only essentially change the theme of the games being played, it has the potential to grow. Combine this with bonus levels that are activated occasionally, as well as story lines, and online casino games are already looking a lot like video games.

Emotional rewards

In addition to all of the video game elements that are being implemented, there is another element that is being used; emotional rewards. The video game industry realized very quickly that another very important incentive that makes people continue to play is the positive emotional experience that certain elements such as avatars, skins for characters or weapons, emblems and more provide.

Online casinos have realized the same thing and are now using badges, performance tracking, avatars and more. This is because research shows that people care more about social status, prestige and reputation than money or prizes. This is a massive reason for the success of in-game purchases in video games.

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