I’ve had an idea brewing for a while about how Strava could develop the achievements aspect of its gaming structure. Then one day I saw this tweet and I thought I would write a blog article to try, firstly, to form my ideas into something with structure, and secondly, to see what other people think.
Dear Strava, just getting out of bed & riding to work is an achievement in winter. So less of “this ride did not earn any achievements”. Thx
— Chris Gerhard (@chrisgerhard) November 20, 2012
To understand where the idea comes from, you’ve only got to look at modern console games like the Call of Duty or Battlefield series. There are literally hundreds of small ways in which your progress is rewarded, earning you various patches and medals at the end of a game. Cumulatively, these also add up to contribute to bigger achievements.
What would this look like in Strava?
A key aspect would be to appeal to everybody – complete beginners, intermediate and advanced riders. So regardless of where you are on the ability spectrum, there would be achievable goals to aim for.
Badges for single rides
You could register any number of the following badges for every ride.
These are just ideas to illustrate the point…
Complete a ride of 10 miles
Complete a ride of 25 miles
Complete a ride of 50 miles
Complete a ride of 100 miles.
Complete a ride of 150 miles.
Climb 500ft in a single ride.
Climb 1000 ft in a single ride.
Climb 3000 ft in a single ride.
Climb 5000 ft in a single ride.
Climb 10,000 ft in a single ride.
Segment based badges
Got a KOM.
Got a PR.
Placed in the top 10.
Got 2 KOM’s on one ride.
Got 3 KOM’s on one ride.
Kom-ageddon – taken 30 Koms
King Kom – taken 100 KOM’s
Ridden 5000 miles (total, or within 12 month period)
Climbed 500,000 ft
Spent 100 hours on the bike
Spent 500 hours on the bike
So, imagine after every ride, you upload your data and Strava rewards you with not only PR’s and leaderboard positions, but all those other potential accumulative rewards you’ve been working towards. Ker-ching!
Of course, we’d need an additional profile tab for viewing this smorgasbord of achievements, showing those already achieved and the progress made towards others, eg. Got 16/30 KOM’s, or ridden 4200 out of 5000 miles, with little visual progress bars.
The options are endless, and as someone who’s engaged with the gaming culture that’s inspired these ideas, it makes sense to me (obviously!)
Just prior to publishing this piece, I looked on the Knowledge base on Strava and found a thread suggesting something very similar!
Here is what Jason Schafer suggested – using a points based system but the idea is the same, more or less:
- “‘Monthly 1,000’ – Ride 1,000 miles (or km) in a month” (40 points)
- “‘Century’ – Complete a ride of at least 100 miles.” (25 points)
- “‘Polka Dot’ – Complete a category 4 [or 3, 2, 1, HC] climb” (5 points)
- “‘Usurper’ – Oust someone’s KOM/QOM on a segment with at least 10 competitors” (5 points)
- “‘Wall Climber’ – Complete a categorized climb with at least 13% grade” (10 points)
- “‘Eww, Roads’ – Complete a ride with at least 1 segment without touching a road.” (5 points)
- “‘Eww, Mud’ – Complete a ride with at least 1 segment without going off road.” (5 points)
- “‘Mile High Club’ – Climb at least 5,280 feet on a ride.” (10 points)
- “‘Time Trialer’ – Average at least 20mph on a ride >10 [or whatever] miles.” (10 points)
What do you think?
What are your ideas for cool ways to extend the achievements concept in Strava?