Why Do I Like Playing Gacha Games?
Although there is much controversy regarding the legitimacy and ethics of the gacha element in games, it has become so prevalent nowadays that the majority of most sought after games have gacha as a core mechanic in them. So, why do I like to play gacha games?
Throughout the history of humans, there has always been a fascination with the unknown, like venturing forth to explore unknown lands, not knowing what you will find, or even something simple like opening a birthday present. Perhaps it is the roller coaster of emotions that we get when we “leave it up to chance” that really excites us, be it the satisfaction of receiving what we want to get, or the utter disappointment of a bad gacha roll.
I am one of those who love the element of random chance in a game (up to a certain extent, of course). It is debatable if it is better to have everything laid out in a fixed order than if you never know what is going to happen next, as obviously one or the other is better in different contexts. However, if you think about it for a moment, will life truly be worth living if you already know what is going to happen next, up to the end?
A Fine Line
To be clear, I am not advocating for too much random chance in a game because it will just lead to disappointment and chaos. I believe while the gacha mechanic has its merits, it is still definitely a form of gambling and it is the responsibility of those involved to continuously think of ways to make it a better experience for players. This is especially if you intend for more people to keep playing your game, and not the opposite as every other game developer in the industry continues to strive for that.
Mobile Games are Simple
Mobile games are meant to be simple. Most games you can just pick up, play it for a couple of hours, and be done with it. Hence, perhaps one of the easiest ways to keep people coming back for more, aside from updating new content and gameplay, is introducing new playable units. The joy of receiving and testing out new units is one of the motivators to continue playing a gacha game!
The gacha element in mobile games used to be extremely punishing and made those games quite literally unbearable for a lot of players. It has definitely come a long way in terms of improvement and most new gacha games will have some form of gacha welfare or pity system in place, enabling you as the player to obtain some, if not all of the rare new units.
It is my personal belief that you should be rewarded for supporting a game, and not get tricked by false advertisement or feel cheated when you actually try to support a game. At the end of the day, remember that playing a game is supposed to make you feel at least a little bit of joy! Do let us know what kind of gacha games you are into!