Social Pyramid Scheme

You get a bonus for inviting your friends and then they have to invite their friends.

Some games will give you a bonus when you invite your friends to play and link to them to your account. This bonus may be a one-time benefit, or it may be an ongoing benefit that improves the gaming experience for each friend that you add. This gives players a strong incentive to convince their friends to play. Those friends then have to sign up more friends and so on, leading to a pyramid scheme and viral growth for the game.

Often, this is combined with another Dark Pattern called Social Obligation where you and your friends can help each other in the game. This leads to a feeling of obligation and people keep playing the game even when they no longer enjoy it.


Star Trek Fleet Command Star Trek Fleet Command
"They currently have a promotion for rewards for inviting your friends."

Harry Potter: Wizards Unite Harry Potter: Wizards Unite
"In the fortresses, the higher level chambers can only be completed by playing with friends."

Walking Dead: Road to Survival Walking Dead: Road to Survival
"Factions are the only way to compete in half of the tourneys."

Hay Day Hay Day
"Yes, you can compete in guilds to earn in-game rewards"

Star Wars™: Galaxy of Heroes Star Wars™: Galaxy of Heroes
"If you create a guild and invite your friends to play, you can play more parts of the game."