Reward Widgets

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Rewards that are placed within game environments without being diegetically present.

While some games give rewards to players by automatically change their game state values and other instead provide new game items in the environment, Reward Widgets are a hybrid of these two possibilities. These Reward Widgets are placed in the game environment but are not diegetically there.

Note: Although a literal reading on the pattern name could imply that pop-up screens regarding rewards would be examples of instances of the pattern, the pattern here is limited to those widgets that are located within the game environment but without being part of it.


Several Social Media Games, e.g. FarmVille, CityVille, Little Cave Hero, and Zombie Lane have Reward Widgets for each type of reward that appears when players have successfully completed an action.

Using the pattern

Reward Widgets are created by making Rewards appear as clickable Geospatial Game Widgets. Using them in Single-Player Games is unproblematic since there is only one eligible player to retrieve them but if they are to be used in Multiplayer Games additional design choices need to be made on who received them: the one that made them appear, the one that is closest when the Time Limit ran out, or some other rule.

They often have Time Limits after which they are automatically retrieved, but can be designed to provide extra Rewards for being manually picked up if additional Clickability is wanted. Additional Clickability can be given by making the collecting of them part of Repeat Combos.

Diegetic Aspects

Being Geospatial Game Widgets, Reward Widgets break Diegetic Consistency in a game.


This pattern is mainly used in games which wishes to increase their Clickability. While they are created by combining Rewards with Geospatial Game Widgets, they do introduce these Geospatial Game Widgets into the games and also modulate how Rewards function (and can themselves be modulated by extra Rewards being given if player manually pick them up instead of letting the game system automatically do so after a while). It does open up for the possibility of Ninja Looting.

Having to click on Reward Widgets can create Grinding but this become optional when the Reward Widgets are automatically retried after a certain Time Limit.

As mentioned above, Reward Widgets break Diegetic Consistency.


Can Instantiate

Clickability, Geospatial Game Widgets, Grinding, Ninja Looting

Can Modulate


Can Be Instantiated By

Rewards together with Geospatial Game Widgets

Can Be Modulated By

Repeat Combos, Rewards, Time Limits

Possible Closure Effects


Potentially Conflicting With

Diegetic Consistency


New pattern created in this wiki.