We all have those days where we’d rather not get out of bed, or we’re really not feeling particularly inspired to work…. let alone doing the dishes.  Even the most disciplined of us face these days occasionally.

There’s lots of advice floating around on how to motivate yourself in these situations.  Like bribing yourself with sweeties or a Netflix binge.

What if there was a way you could turn your daily chores, learning new things, completing life challenges and finishing your work, in to a game?

Well there is!  Meet Habitica.

Habitica is a role playing game, which as you’d expect from an RPG, allows you to create and develop a character and his/her skill trees, buy equipment, do quests, hatch and nurture pets in to steeds etc.

It comes as a phone or a web app, and also gives you the opportunity to say things like “I defeated a horde of evil rabbits today by cleaning the house”, but now I’m just getting ahead of myself.

It is primarily text based, but you can see your character and all your cool gear and pets.  Like RPGs?  Somewhat intrigued?  Lets get in to some juicy details.

The Basics

Setting up your tasks

So how do you progress in this game world?  The same way you progress in the real world, working to achieve your goals, getting your work done, and getting chores done.

So in Habitica you have three ways of defining what you want to do, you have:

Habits

This could be anything from taking a 30 minute jog, to eating something healthy.  You call also use this to punish yourself for bad habits (eating something unhealthy for example), taking a hit to your health!

Dailies

You can add tasks here that you really want to push yourself to do daily, or on certain days.  Maybe you want to spend at least an hour a day working/studying, make a “1 Hour work” daily task.  If you complete your dailies each day, you get a streak bonus multiplier.  Fail to do your dailies one day, you take damage to your health.

To-Dos

For one off things that you need to do but keep putting off, like sending off that damn form or.. erm.. buying that goat you needed.  You get it done, and it gives you a reward and disappears.

Other cool stuff

You can also set a level of difficulty for all of the goals and tasks you set, the more difficult a task is, the higher the payoff when you complete it.  You can also add deadlines, notes, and reminders to tasks.

Reward System & Leveling

Cash Money! (Gold and Silver)

Each time you complete something, you get a bit of cash, some experience and possibly some random loot.

You can use your cash to buy gear, or custom rewards you make for yourself (e.g. “A day off” for 80 gold).  As you’d expect from an RPG, your gear has certain stats associated with it that makes your character stronger (comes in handy for things like boss fights, but I’ll get to that in a bit).

 

 

Random Loot (Pets and steeds!)

Some times when you complete tasks, you get random rewards.  These generally come in the form of eggs, hatching potions, and food.  There are loads of different types of each, and as you probably guessed eggs are hatched by potions, they turn in to pets.  As you feed your pets they become stronger until eventually they become mounts that you can ride (which make your little 8 bit dude/dudette look damn fine).

With all the varieties of those three things, there’s a lot of variety you can have with your pets and mounts.

Experience

Yes there’s a leveling system.  As you complete stuff, you gain experience and level up.  At level 10 you become a proper grown up, and you get to pick your class.  Each of the four classes come with different benefits and abilities, each advantageous for different scenarios.

 

 

 

 

 

So by this point you could be wearing some sweet armor, riding a tiger, rocking a sword bigger than your own body, “What’s it all for James?!” I hear you cry.

Quests, Bosses, Challenges, Guilds and Parties

Guilds and Challenges

This is an RPG man!  One is never alone in an RPG.  You can pester your friends in to playing too and add them as friends, or make new ones by joining a guild.  There’s a variety of guilds for various different things in life, study, music, programmers, historians, and guilds for all sorts of specific disciplines and areas.

Guilds have their own discussion boards, and sometimes host challenges.  A challenge will consist of a series of tasks, and sometimes a reward.  By accepting a challenge, those tasks are added to your personal task list.  This can be great if you’re looking for inspiration on what tasks to allocate yourself.

Parties, Quests, and Bosses

If you get pally with a few people, you can join their party or form one.  As a party you can then take on quests together.  Quests tend to reward you with experience and sometimes loot of some kind, and come in the form of bosses, finding/doing things, or a mix of the two.

Once you’re on a quest, let’s saying you’re fighting a boss, each task you complete then actually deals a portion of damage to that boss.  At the end of each day, all of the damage your party members have caused is added up and dealt to the boss, damaging its health and eventually slaying it.

And if you’re more of a lone wolf, you can take on quests alone too.

And that’s about it.

Habitica is a fabulous idea that’s been put together really well.  I’ve been using it for a while and keep coming back, it has all the addictive qualities of a good RPG, without any guilty feelings for not doing something more productive.

If you’re still intrigued, jump on in and start playing.  If you do, feel free to add me or post your username in the comments, my username is Jage1992.  Also the Habitica blog will keep up to date with what the developers are up to.

Thanks for reading!

 

Hi I'm James, I am a Software Engineer working at Veygo and I experiment with Machine Learning in my spare time. My current focus is on WordPress and PHP, but I've also worked with Python, React, C++, C# and Java.

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