In a project I'm involved in there's an app (currently only for web) which is heavily gamification-centered. In this app users perform "bets" and are ranked according to "hit" percentages.

I'm looking for a ranking system which will normalize quite quickly, so the veteran user will have little or no advantage over the new ones.

Here are some of the things I've though about:

Percentages are not good here because in this specific application, a good player will normalize to about 70% "hits" - an unappealing figure.

Stars don't provide the level of granulation I need. I was hoping for at least 10-15 levels. 10-15 stars is unruly.

Discrete "titles" will require some code work to normalize, and are not immediately understandable.

Can anyone think of a better system to rank players by?


  • any reason not to use just levels from 1 to 15? are you looking for something "fancier"? – Alejandro Veltri Jul 8 '15 at 18:40
  • I think numerical value will cause problems in the future with a global ranking table, and certainly is plain, but it is definitely worth considering. This global table is not majorly important for this particular application. – Navot Jul 9 '15 at 0:02
  • what do you mean by "a ranking system that normalize quite quickly"? – Alejandro Veltri Jul 9 '15 at 1:53
  • @rewobs Let me rephrase: I would like for new players to be able to get a meaningful rank after only a few rounds. This is, however, a less important aspect, as I guess newbies can have a special case, fiddled with and made to be meaningful. (sort of like how OK cupid gives you match percentages only after you've answered at least 5 questions.) – Navot Jul 10 '15 at 11:49
  • What about a combination of color/metal and number of stars? 1 to 5 stars of bronze, silver or gold represent 15 levels. – Crissov Jul 10 '15 at 19:12
  • You want normalization, with at least 10 - 15 levels.
  • You want the visualization to appear next to player names, in isolation from other players.
  • You don't like percentage, stars, or textual titles.
  • You feel that a bar (graph) is an idea, but would not be immediately legible.
  • You suggested using colour, feeling that this would enhance the legibility.

A bar graph with 10-15 "progressively" colored blocks/segments (perhaps transitioning from green to red) might suit your circumstance.

  • A bar is a very nice idea. However, although the UI is still in a very early stage, I imagine the ranking displayed next to the player name, meaning, quite small. So a bar wouldn't be instantly legible. I could color the graph according to rank (first quarter green, second quarter yellow and so on), which is perhaps a good way to introduce more granularity to a discrete system. – Navot Jul 7 '15 at 23:01
  • post-edit: I like your presentation style! :) I'd like to wait a few days before accepting – Navot Jul 9 '15 at 0:03
  • it doesn't really address the "70% dilemma" in that it will still show a good player being, well, 70% - 7-10th bar out of 10/15 Maybe use a little cheat - to use a reduced generic scale (i.e. 10 for a score of 0-60%) and only add further bars if the user actually exceeds that. Color Scale: red-green might not be the best, depending on the "emotional" value of the rank - a blue-green range might be more neutral – rogerovo Jul 10 '15 at 14:58
  • @rogerovo if we will adopt this method, 70% (or thereabout) will probably be counted as '100%'. Players who exceed that may get a special case: different color or badge, something like that. The main thing is I'm hiding the unappealing figure under something nicer – Navot Jul 10 '15 at 20:16
  • @navot ok cool, that is what I was suggesting ;) – rogerovo Jul 11 '15 at 9:51

My only idea would be to use the alphabet.

You could use the letter from A (best) to O (worst). Additionally you could made them part of a medals (15 to 11 bronze, 10 to 6 silver, 5 to 1 gold). I would probably add extra detail for the A level too.

  • "i'm in the F grade"? – rogerovo Jul 10 '15 at 14:53
  • The application will currently be in Hebrew. I'm don't think using the hebrew alphabet is right here – Navot Jul 10 '15 at 20:18

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