Gamification Framework, Personas, Prototype


Conceptualization, Gamification, Wireframes, Prototype


Axure, Adobe Photoshop


October to December 2017 (6 Weeks)


Group Project


Manisha Goenka, Saai Kishore


Kurbo is an easy-to-use mobile app that helps young kids from age 8-18 years of age to learn healthy habits, track exercise and log food by engaging in fun games. The app follows a traffic light system to teach about different food types and sets a red light budget for every week gradually reducing it every week.


What is Kurbo?

Kurbo is an interactive weight loss program for kids and families. There are two parts to it.

  • The first part is the interactive mobile app for iOS and Android where users can track their food/exercise/height/weight and play games to earn Kurbo coins.
  • The second part is the Coaching program where every user who purchase a plan gets assigned a Kurbo Coach who meets with the user on a weekly basis for 15 minutes over Face Time or Skype. All the tracking done by the user in the app is visible to the coach through a portal that the coach uses during their 15-minute weekly sessions. They use the food and exercise tracking to better help structure the call.


For the project, we were given the MVP requirements. It was two-fold, first to redesign the on-boarding experience and second to gasify the existing app usage and rewards system. This was another real-world project with feedback and inputs from the Kurbo product team. Listed below are the two requirements as mentioned in the MVP,

  • Design a method to gamify the initial on-boarding/education/training of users onto the Kurbo App.
  • Design a method to gamify the ongoing usage and engagement of users on the Kurbo App with regards to tracking food/exercise, consumer/sharing content, and keep track of progress throughout the program.


For this project, we focused on creating a simple and engaging gamification concept. The new user onboarding will give user a hint of the reward system during on boarding and let them explore the app as they proceed to track and record their meals. We also want to create a gamification that is sustainable for users and the business to adapt. We based our design decisions on the fact that the main demographic population for the Kurbo system are kids aged 8-18 years old. We presented our final prototype to the company CEO along with other classmates.

Design Process

Before we even started thinking about the UX it was essential that we complete the gamification steps and then move to UX and visual design.

Defining Gamification

Gamification is essentially the use of game design principles in a non-game scenario to engage users and help them reach their goals. For this project, we adopted the gamification design process from our class and the book “Gamification at Work” by Janaki Kumar & Mario Herger.

A. Define your Persona

We chose to utilize Bartle’s personality types to create our persona. For Persona, we defined their Personal and Professional attributes like Goals, Gender, Player type, Pain points, Job title & Role, etc. We created 4 personas for different age groups who use Kurbo and have different goals. A family persona was required since it is important for Kurbo that families stay informed, connected and help their children achieve their goals.

B. Define the Mission (What?), understand Motivation (Why?) and select gamification mechanics (How?)

For these steps, we chose to set S.M.A.R.T Mission - Specific, Measurable, Actionable, Realistic and Time bound. After selecting the appropriate Intrinsic motivators (for long term learning) and extrinsic motivators (For rewards, badges, etc.). We used many known elements like leaderboard, Narrative, Badge, feedback, etc. as the basis for the game.

C. Define the Game Economy

We used the game Economy chart with categories of Self-Esteem, Fun, Social Capital and Things to guide us in our design process.

D. Lay down the Game Rules

It was important to decide the rules for collecting XP points and coins in the game and how can they be utilized further to provide fun and purposeful engagement. We did not want our coins to be just any virtual currency that the users can earn and then do nothing with it. So, in our design users had the opportunity to redeem the coins to coupons for groceries and also workout related accessories from the store section.

E. Design the Engagement Loop

To create an engagement loop we decided to have a daily challenge which updates and sends feedback to users to encourage them in their journey to complete the entire challenge to move forward in their journey. We made the whole journey more interesting we implemented the avatar journey which was inspired from the Kung Fu Panda movie. According to the rules, the more XP points users collect, they move forward to the next avatar.

Usability Issues

To understand the existing design, we conducted a brief heuristic evaluation and listed the usability issues. We looked at the Android and iOS app and found major difference between the two. There were too many steps in the existing onboarding and the not much incentive for users to re-engage with the app for long time.

Conceptual Modeling

Object - Action Grammer

We started by deconstructing the Object-Action-Attribute grammar from the existing design. For this we identified the object and action pairs and associated attributes. In the next step, we refined the matrix to create a clear, condensed version since a larger matrix increases the cognitive load on working memory. It is a tool to define the Information Architecture of the product and helped me structure all the pages and elements.

Prioritization Matrix

We also created a prioritization matrix based on the frequency of use and volume and cross persona swim lane analysis. Based on this matrix the important features can be highlighted and the Rare features can be in the secondary layers.

Final Design

We created a medium fidelity prototype in Axure with all interactions and visual design to help users to accomplish the onboard to Workato and create their first recipe. We also defined the grids which helped me to arrange the objects and their attributes within the grids.

Project Impact

My Learnings

  • With this project, I was able to explore gamification vs. gameful design and how it can be implemented in a healthcare scenario.
  • This was the first time I worked on an app for young children and so I was able to gain a very different perspective than designing for older audience.


  • Since we were given the MVP and the gamification steps we adhered to the same for this project.
  • In terms of data I felt that we did not have insight about the business goals and objectives which affected our decision making process.