Four Gamer Types: Blockchain and its gamification potential

HECO Chain
4 min readMar 9, 2022

Russia has invaded Ukraine; sanctions have been imposed and markets worldwide, already witnessing a downward trend due to Federal interest rate hikes, are in freefall.

The crypto market is no exception, and there lies a firm belief that the bear market has arrived and is here to stay, at least for the near future, stated Flora Li, Director of Huobi Research Institute during a Web3 Industry Insights event organized by HECO Chain, a decentralized, EVM-compatible public chain, held in Stanford, CA.

Held Feb 23 2022, the event featured guests from Huobi Global, Animoca, DHVC, Uphonest Capital, GV (formerly Google Ventures), Lattice Capital, Three Arrows Capital and other institutions. Topics discussed included the blockchain gamification potential, Web3 and NFTs.

The foreboding sentiment associated with a bear market, however, does not necessarily spell all doom and gloom for the blockchain industry, attendees said. Rather, a dismal market could set the wheels in motion for innovation to take place, and even accelerate the process, said Lily Zhang, CFO for Huobi Global.

“With the Web3 paradigm emerging, a new creator economy is taking shape,” said Zhang. “Forward thinking projects will gain prominence, and this presents an ideal scenario for promising startups, like those in the gaming space, to thrive.”

The Great Gamification Potential

The number of gamers in the world is on the rise, and the opportunities to roll out blockchain-based gamified systems are massive as the trustless, verified nature of the blockchain caters to the needs of different gamer types, said Yat Siu, Head of Animoca Brands, a blockchain gaming firm.

Bartle’s taxonomy of player types — a handy overview of the different motivations that drive engagement on gamified systems, identified four types of players: Achievers, Socializers, Explorers and Killers, based on how they interact with the game and with each other.


This group of players games to show off their in-game prowess. They wish for others to be in awe of their vast collection of in-game achievements and desire respect, recognition and power. This desire results not only in competitiveness with other players, but behaviors such as the collecting of rare in-game items or trophies..


Socializers are drawn to multi-player and online games, and favor interactions with other players alongside other social aspects of gaming. Socializers are happy to help fellow gamers with in-game tasks such as defeating a challenging boss or completing a tricky puzzle.


This group thrives on discovery and wishes to test the limits of the game while exploring as much of the in-game world as possible. They enjoy experimenting with different characters and items within a game.


Killers get the most fun by harassing, cheating and trolling other players. They will try every underhanded trick just to get ahead of their competitors and have no conscience about any distress they may have caused in order to achieve dominance over others.

Four very different playing styles, but each player type offers monetizing opportunities for game developers, shared Siu.

The possession of valuable in-game items brings recognition, an important aspect of games for Achievers. Meanwhile, social ‘treasures’, in-game items which a player can only obtain from another player, are a perfect complement to the Socializer gamer lifestyle. Explorers will be obsessed with in-game Easter eggs found in hidden areas within a virtual world, while Killers will stop at nothing to obtain specific, high-level weapons or collectibles to achieve dominance over others.

The more players engage with game environments, the more motivated they will be to pay real-life cash for virtual items. This phenomenon, typically referred to as RMT (Real Money Transactions), should be tapped on by developers with the implementation of a loot box concept offering rare in-game items

A psychological principle called variable ratio reinforcement can be employed to spur the purchases of loot boxes. Variable ratio reinforcement works on the belief that players’ dopamine systems respond more to an uncertain reward system than a consistent one.

The Blockchain Gaming Opportunity

While RTM within the gaming sphere has been firmly established over the years, the blockchain is perfectly poised to cater to players’ increasing appetite for virtual in-game assets, bringing the gaming industry to its next phase of evolution.

Not only does the blockchain’s trustless verification system bring authenticated, non-fungible recognition to a player’s in-game achievements, but on the in-game item trading front, smart contracts backed by the blockchain give players confidence that they are receiving authentic items. DMarket, a platform for trading skins (and in-game asset), estimates the skin market alone is worth US$40 billion a year.

The blockchain’s presence in the gaming world signals greater liberty and autonomy for players.

“Decentralization of assets allows users the freedom to interact in a P2P manner, offering relief from the current centralized models,” said Siu. “With interoperability, gamers will be able to use and exchange their virtual assets across different games, providing players with a more unique and personalized gaming experience.”

“We are living in prime innovation conditions, and continuous, dedicated development into the blockchain will definitely open new opportunities for all industry players,” said Wesley Xia, Head of Business Development, HECO Chain, North America. “The HECO team hopes to foster collaborations with various vested parties across North America so as to further strengthen the blockchain ecosystem.”

About HECO Chain

HECO Chain is an EVM-compatible public chain that provides blockchain developers with an efficient and low-cost on-chain environment for decentralized applications (dApps), smart contracts, and digital assets. To date, HECO has recorded approximately 18.6 million total addresses with 548 million transactions made on the platform.

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