Challenges are made of one or more objectives, potentially leading to a reward. They differ from quests in that they do not include a narrative. Moreover, challenges can be limited in time, and be automatically recurring.
Combining time contraints and recurrence of challenges can cause learners to maintain a high engagement level with the platform, or a course, but enciting them to come back on a regular basis to complete their challenges and reap the rewards.
It is very important to stay away from the feeling of failure in a gamification context. Therefore, challenges are designed to be perceived as a bonus task, and thus learners won't be penalised, frowned upon, or blamed if they do not complete their challenges on time.
When to use?
Challenges are useful to create unique challenges that do not warrant a storyline. To create additional ways to earn rewards. To encourage learners to complete certain tasks within a given time. To maintain high engagement levels by enticing learners to keep coming back peridically.
When a challenge has a time limit, a learner will only have the given time to complete their objectives and obtain the rewards. If the challenge has not been completed in the allocated time, it will eventually disappear and nothing else will happen to avoid spreading negativity.
Additionally, challenges with a time limit can be set to repeat automatically. Challenges will repeat based on the same duration as their time limit. For instance, a challenge limited to a week will repeat every week. When a challenge repeats, it essentially resets and can be completed again for the same reward.
Repeating challenges will only repeat at the end of their original time limit, even if they were completed early. For example, if a learner completes a weekly challenge early, they won't have the ability to retake the challenge until the next Monday.
Similarly to quests, challenges can trigger rewards and side effects when they are completed. But unlike quests, the rewards and side effects are automatically awarded and triggered as soon as the challenge is completed.