Variable Rewards

Unpredictable or random rewards are more addictive than a predictable schedule.

Casinos know that slot machines are more addictive if they pay out a random reward at unpredictable times. If people always won back 80% of their money on each pull of the lever, it wouldn't be an exciting game and wouldn't be addictive. It's the unpredictable and random nature of the rewards that keeps people playing with the hope for that rare big jackpot.

A constant or predictable schedule of rewards is not very exciting. This is why games often randomize the rewards that you receive for finishing a level or defeating an enemy. By making the rewards like a slot machine, they are trying to make the game more additive. They may also be trying to extend gameplay by making you grind longer to get what you want. If you need a certain item, but it only appears as a reward 5% of the time, people will keep playing over and over with the hope of getting that rare item. If the game has limited energy and forces you to wait to play then people may end up paying money to skip the wait.


Tap Away Tap Away

Geometry Dash Geometry Dash

Melvor Idle: Ad Free Melvor Idle: Ad Free
"Random loot, random pets, random task rewards"

Puzzle Page Puzzle Page
"After completing 15 puzzles, you get a random reward."

Merge Mansion - Mystery Game Merge Mansion - Mystery Game
"You get XP and occasionally other rewards for completing tasks."

The Manga Works The Manga Works
"Some rewards aren't random, namely experience from trying new themes and from winning trophies. However, "Going out" randomly gives you Plot Points (an integral part of the gameplay loop), the player can randomly gain experience when working on a manga, and even training has an element of luck. On occasion, you may get a higher-than-usual stat buff from training your character."

"sometimes clearing story mode or event levels will randomly give you extra rewards no matter what your ending score is"

Water Sort Puzzle - Sort Color Water Sort Puzzle - Sort Color
"coins to change aesthetics, but still makes you watch ads if you change"

Rise of Cultures Rise of Cultures
"Almost every single reward in the game is random to some extent, however you do get the exact odds."

Among Us Among Us
"At the end of each round, you're given both "beans" and "cubes" which are in-game currency used to pay for cosmetics. There is a random multiplier added onto both values to determine if you get more or less that round."