Feeling obligated to return a favor, share resources, trade an item, etc.

If the game allows you to share resources, trade items or send gifts to your friends or other players then it may be using the dark pattern of Reciprocity. The person who receives your gift may feel a sense of obligation to return the favor. They may not have resources to share, and so they may feel bad that they gave something valuable away, or they may feel shame or guilt if they do not reciprocate. These unwanted negative feelings make the game less enjoyable.

If a game allows players to band together into guilds or clans, then sharing resources may be a requirement for participating in the group. Players may be punished by the leaders for not pulling their weight and helping out the team by donating valuable items.

The social pressure to donate items to other players means that you are giving up some of your own valuable resources that you have spent time and maybe money earning. This means that you have to spend more time and money to earn those items again.


Love Nikki-Dress UP Queen Love Nikki-Dress UP Queen
"Collaborative mini game within your association (like a guild). Very minimal. Some events involve more reciprocity"

Dead by Daylight Mobile Dead by Daylight Mobile
"you can drop items you purchased with in game currency (which can be earned) for players to pick up and keep."

Legend of the phoenix Legend of the phoenix
"When you attend someone else's banquet, you transfer a very small # of banquet points that are redeemable for other in-game items like marriage stones and books."

Gardenscapes Gardenscapes
"You can send gifts to other players"

Old School RuneScape Old School RuneScape
"Main game mode allows open trades between players. There is no benefit or push to sharing or donating your belongings."

Minecraft Minecraft
"Its mostly for helping your friend craft something, nothing bad here."

Tiny Tower Tiny Tower
"You can swap bitizens"

Delicious World - Cooking Game Delicious World - Cooking Game
"when you invite friends you both get rewards"

LEGO® Legacy: Heroes Unboxed LEGO® Legacy: Heroes Unboxed
"You are allowed to borrow other players' characters."

GrandChase GrandChase
"Evolution stones with guildmates, daily keys with friends"