Habit RPG

Your life, the role playing game

Habit RPG

I've messed around with task management apps and fancy online to-do lists for a few years, but none have come anywhere close to being as fun and productive as a website I discovered last year called HabitRPG .

Imagine creating a list of habits you want to form, things you would like to do on a daily basis, and an overall to-do list that is tied directly to a little 8-bit version of you. How well you do with these things in your real life will determine the prosperity or doom of your little pixelated self. This little guy lives in Habitica , a mythical land that could have come out of any great role playing video game in the 80's or 90's. E.g. Legend of Zelda , Final Fantasy II , etc... Within this world exists all of the features that one might expect from a good RPG game. Your character can gain or lose XP, MP and GP (experience, magic (or mana), and gold). You can upgrade your weapons, armor, and other aspects of your appearance. Pets can be hatched from eggs, and if fed the correctly can eventually be grown in to a mounted creature. Evil monsters lurk around the corners to be battled if you join in to a party with your fellow Habiteers (other real people using the system). You can join guilds (themed groups), participate in challenges, or just hang out at the Inn and chat (a quasi forum).


Again, all of these features serves as a vehicle for you (the real you) to become a more productive, better, or shall we say "upgraded" version of yourself. Best of all, it actually works, thanks to some clever psychology. Watching your character flourish turns what would otherwise be work in to play. And, as a nice side bonus, you actually get things done in your real life.

Pixelated weapons aren't enough to motivate you? Well, go ahead and make own. For example, I might set a reward like "Have a bowl of ice cream" and price it out at 50GP. I love ice cream, so I know I'll work hard during the week to earn enough GP to "purchase" my reward. Perhaps I'll even create a few habits like "Go for a run" or, "Eat a salad for lunch" to help me earn that gold faster. At the end of the week, I'll have burned far more calories than my ice cream contains and be further along with my fitness goals, while still enjoying a treat.

HabitRPG was created by Tyler Renelle in 2013, initially just for his own personal use. But after making it public, and then getting plugged on both Lifehacker and Reddit, it became clear that there was a ton of interest. At the time there were no resources to push it further- So he turned to Kick Starter and secured $40k to work on it full time! Since then others have come on board to help, and today HabitRPG is active, well supported and updated with new features on a monthly basis. Here is a great interview that tells the story in more detail.

Eric James Lyman Stuff related to technology, art, fitness, philosophy and self improvement