The Custom Rewards feature allows players to add personal, customized purchases to the Rewards list. However, it can be difficult to decide on a treat that fits an achievement. Sometimes, even choosing a Reward at all can be daunting. Additionally, what works for one player might not work for another.
Here are a few ideas along several different lines to get you started; if you'd like to add to this list, take a look at the instructions on the Talk page.
How Much to Charge for My Rewards
The prices shown for these Rewards might be appropriate for a player who earns 20-30 gold per day. If you are a new player, your Rewards should probably be cheaper. If you are a high-level Rogue who gets 5 gold for every task plus large streak bonuses, they should probably be more expensive.
Figure out how much gold you earn on a good day, then decide how often you want to give yourself each Reward. (If you are mixing small daily Rewards and large long-term ones, make sure you can afford both of them!)
There is no maximum or minimum limit on prices for custom Rewards. You can set them as high or as low as you want. For instance, 1 silver is equal to 0.01 gold, which could be useful for the Wishing Well example below, but you could use a smaller number if you prefer. Alternatively, you could use an enormous price such as 10 million or more.
A Question of Balance
All work and no play just isn't healthy or fun. Rewarding yourself for your hard work is a key part of keeping yourself productive, and feeling as though you have earned those Rewards makes them more satisfying. It's important to find that middle ground.
Rewards can be used to either discourage you from spending money on them (negative Rewards) or as Rewards for doing well on your tasks (positive Rewards). A Reward can work both ways! For example, you could set watching a soap opera as a Reward to discourage you to spend too much time on it, while Rewarding yourself for finishing your To-Dos for that day.
To prevent yourself from over-indulging, you can set a daily limit (perhaps your Reward Shop only has room to stock 1 cookie each day) or have a second Reward with the same item for a higher price (for example a low price to play a game for 1/2 hour, but if you continue after your time is up then the fee increases).
Here are some Rewards that can be relevant to the types of challenges you set yourself.
Treats (calorie counting/fitness)
Comfort (exercise/busy day)
Fun and Games (avoiding procrastination)
Some Rewards need preparation and planning. The build up can be part of your lists. Other Rewards are more expensive, but become more meaningful with a higher price tag. You can choose the amount of gold to reflect the work you put into earning the prize at the end.
- Get a dog
- Buy your first car
- Go on holiday
- Buy a new computer/games console
- Download an app for your iPod
Some Rewards are just another step towards organizing your life. You can earn time doing something you enjoy, but still limit yourself to just that time. This gives you more space in your busy schedule for being productive. Another drain can be your finances and when you set yourself a cyber-gold challenge to earn before spending your real world money on something expensive, setting a monetary gift as a goal can work very well. Here are a few examples of both.
These can be based on fixed amounts based on the cost:
For a more nuanced approach, you can give yourself a "spending limit" accompanying a monetary budget, and click on the gold value multiple times, up to the limit you specified. In the Reward name, type in your limit (see example below). For example, you could set a spending limit of 3x for buying a new computer screen, or 5x for less important spending such as entertainment, and then only allow yourself to purchase that Reward as many times as the limit states.
Once you reach a goal or milestone (for example, after reaching a 21-day streak on a Daily), you could spend 100 gold by clicking twice on the Blu-ray Reward, and then allow yourself to buy up to $20 worth of Blu-ray movies. Since the spending limit you enacted caps at 5, it would be against your self-imposed rules to redeem it more than 5 times. This way you can limit yourself to spending 250 gold and $50 on Blu-ray discs. This method allows you to redeem your Rewards with some amount of flexibility while also keeping you from over-indulging.
Alternatively, "big ticket" items could serve as long-term goals, with smaller checkpoints over time as you make progress toward your ultimate prize. In the case of wanting to buy a computer monitor, you could redeem the Reward in HabitRPG in 3 installments of 300 gold each, rather than saving up to pay 900 gold all at once at a later date. This offers a more tangible way of seeing your progress toward your long-term goal because you Reward yourself every time you set $100 aside in a bank account, instead of just once when you're on your way to the store to buy the monitor. It can also serve as a price cap, as in the Blu-ray example, so that you don't spend more than $300 on your new monitor.
Subscribers can buy gems with gold. However, if you don't want to subscribe, but still want to spend real-life money on gems and have it feel like an earned prize, create a gem Reward.
Rewards don't have to be expensive purchases. Even a simple cup of coffee can be a good Reward. However, if your budget is very tight, consider making gold Rewards for "buying" or "renting" items that you could otherwise get for free. For example:
- Borrowing a book or DVD from the library.
- Listening to a podcast episode.
- Watching a show/movie on network or cable TV.
- Downloading a free ebook. (Ebook sellers often have a constantly changing "free books" section on their website and sites like Project Gutenberg let you legally download public-domain books for free.)
- Making a home version of the mocha or smoothie from your favorite cafe.
- Going to a museum or zoo on "free admission day," or to any interesting place that doesn't have an admission fee (the park, the beach, etc).
The Time Based Rewards section (above) is another source of ideas for Rewards that don't require extra money.
Custom In-Game Rewards
If you're more motivated by in-game Rewards, but no longer have any to buy, there are a few ways to make your own.
You can also Reward yourself by paying to enable bonus XP for a day.
First, pay whatever gold price you set. Then, for the rest of the day, whenever you plus a Habit or check off a Daily or To-Do, plus the Bonus XP! Habit as well. (Make sure to set a steep price for this Reward, or else the extra gold you'll get from the Bonus XP! Habit may turn it into free XP. You could also give yourself the extra XP using Fix Character Values rather than a Habit to avoid receiving gold for it.)
For those with time-sensitive tasks or delayed tasks, such as "Went to bed early last night" or "Woke up at 9:00 a.m.," this Reward gives you a chance to earn a Perfect Day, but at a cost. (To avoid abuse, consider adding a note: "limit to one per day.")
Hatching and Feeding Pets
Many people find collecting pets and mounts to be one of the most motivating elements of HabitRPG. However, burning through every egg, potion, and piece of food as soon as you get it can lead to a sort of burnout, since running out of one of your biggest Rewards can leave you feeling empty. With these customs, you can extend the time it takes to achieve Beast Master and make hatching a pet or raising a mount feel like more of an event.
Fuente de los deseos
The Wishing Well is a gold sink for players who need more uses for gold or desire more drops and do not usually reach their drop-cap each day.
With the above Reward, players can toss gold into the Wishing Well, then click the following Habit to potentially gather drops.
Players who do not want to gain experience and gold when "wishing" for drops can create a Daily or To-Do instead of a Habit, then after checking off the task can immediately uncheck it. The gold, experience, and mana that had been gained will be removed but if a drop was received, it will remain.
Dailies are easier for this since they can be unchecked with no extra steps, assuming you are viewing them from the 'All' tab. Unchecking a completed To-Do requires clicking the "Complete" tab and finding the Wishing Well task.
If you repeatedly tick, untick, then retick a Daily or To-Do without clicking a Reward or other task in-between, you will receive the same drop every time (if you were granted a drop on the first tick). To avoid this, always use a Reward, even if it is for a very small amount such as 0.01 gold (1 silver).
Another way to use custom Rewards is to make them into additional penalties for missed Habits or Dailies or late To-Dos. For those motivated by punishment, incurring a gold tax in addition to health loss may be just the deterrent necessary to kick a lingering bad habit.
Creating a Gold Bank
If you're saving up for a big ticket item, you can use the Rewards section to set up a bank account so you're not tempted to spend your gold in the meantime.
Click the first Reward to "deposit" money into your bank so you can't spend it. Then edit the description in the 0-gold Reward to keep track of your deposits.
Savings Account: You can use this idea as a savings account where the bank balance Sample Reward is your account balance. Then in case of accidental Death, the Fix Character Values tool could be used to restore some gold from the account.
Installment Plan: You can use the gold bank to pay small amounts toward an expensive item. Then you would just delete the Reward when you've earned enough to claim it.
In-Game Events: This is also a good way to save up for an upcoming Grand Gala. When the event arrives, use Fix Character Values (in the Settings menu) to add the saved gold back into your account so you can spend it on equipment.
Rewarding the Process for Long-Term Goals
Habitican LizLavenza showed how Habits, Dailies, To-Dos and Rewards can all be used as part of a process for attaining real-life rewards. The Habits, Dailies, and To-Dos are the building blocks or stepping stones that can be measured and tracked towards reaching a long-term goal. The gold from completing tasks is used to reward adhering to the process. By focusing on process, the game gives immediate rewards for the small steps that have long term benefits.
Here are some examples of using this system: The goal is to get an A on a language exam. The reward for that is buying a new book. So the steps towards reaching that real-life goal are
- Daily to use flashcards,
- Habit to listen to the radio in that language
- To-Dos for homework
- Rewards are buying equipment
The goal is to lose 5 pounds. The reward will be a new dress. So the steps towards reaching that real-life goal are:
- Daily to eat a healthy breakfast
- Daily to weigh using a scale
- Daily to go for a walk each day
- Habit for exercising
- Habit for sticking to an eating plan
- Rewards are feeding pets and raising mounts
You can always decide when to use your Rewards, and you can schedule when you receive your Reward in relation to the completion of the task. For example, if you bake a cake as you exercise, the cake is ready to eat when you're done. You've received the Reward immediately after the task has been completed.
Alternatively, you can enjoy a Reward while you complete a task. Watching television, or listening to an audiobook, while folding laundry can make that task easier to accomplish.
If you can afford to leave certain tasks undone, you might set an "Ignore X Dailies for 1 day" Reward and give yourself an earned day off (rather than Resting in the Inn for free).
You might not see the point in making your own Rewards, but personalizing your Rewards can give you a greater sense of achievement. With HabitRPG you can look back over the tasks you've completed to earn the Rewards, and you can encourage yourself to spread them in a way that lets you complete more tasks and work towards something that's just for you.
At a professional level, the truly most satisfying rewards lie in the accomplishments of the tasks you love to do, not what you want to get. In other words, intrinsic rewards can be more effective than extrinsic rewards. Check this TED talk to find out more.