Habitica is an online time management application. Unlike most time management programs, Habitica takes the form of a role-playing game. It was created and is run by OCDevel. Habitica is an open source project.
Previously known as HabitRPG, Habitica was designed as a self-improvement web application designed to help the player keep track of and remain motivated by overlaying game mechanics onto a player's life goals. Renelle was inspired by the self-help books The Power of Habit and The Now Habit in designing the application. The earliest version of Habitica was a Google Docs spreadsheet with colour-coded cell formulae.
The game is laid out in the form of an RPG, in which the player collects items such as gold and armor to become more powerful. Rewards are achieved through maintaining real-life goals, in the form of Habits, Dailies and To-Do's.
- a predefined habit is "1h productive work". This is a positive habit: if a user has an hour of productive work, they will gain experience and gold.
- a predefined habit is "Eat junk food". This is a negative habit: if a user eats junk food, they will lose health.
- a predefined habit is "Take the stairs". This is a positive and a negative habit: if a user does take the stairs, they will gain experience and gold. If they don't take the stairs, they will lose health.
If a user completes a positive habit often, it will turn green. This signifies that they are doing a good job following their habit. On the other hand, if a user performs a negative habit often, it will start to turn red and do increasing damage to their health. When players accrue enough experience points, they gain a level, which restores their health.
Habitica uses Dailies to track habits that the user wants to complete in a known, scheduled, and repeatable fashion. Dailies are completed through the form of a check box: the user sets their Dailies in advance, and checks off what they have completed in their day. Completed Dailies give the user experience and gold; Dailies that fail to be completed by the end of the day result in a loss of health.
To-dos are one-time tasks that can be added or deleted at the user's desire. When a user completes a to-do, they gain experience. The to-do then disappears (it can later be found under the 'Complete' to-dos tab). Unlike Habits and Dailies, if a large amount of time passes without a user checking off their to-dos, the user will not lose health: the to-do just becomes more valuable over time (it gives more experience and gold once completed).
A major part of Habitica is the role-playing aspect. A role-playing game is one in which a player takes on the role of another person or character. In Habitica, the user takes control of a character that they design themselves. The user can level up and unlock new features. However, upon death various items and a level are lost.
In reviewing the site, Alan Henry wrote for Lifehacker that "while it doesn’t offer the advanced features that many other to-do apps have, it’s certainly a blast to use, and really addictive". Kelsey Adams wrote for CNET that Habitica (then known as HabitRPG) 'had [her] at RPG', and describes 'how much more compelling a game can be than reality to those of us whose brains are bent that way'.
The player can customize their own character (also known as an avatar) using various customization options such as hair, skin color and shirts. The armor and swords that a player buys when equipped also provide an attribute bonus. Some of the art in Habitica is sourced from BrowserQuest.
Depending on how well a player completes their Habits, dailies, and To-Dos, they either gain experience or lose "health". When a player obtains enough experience, they gain a level, but losing all their health will cause their character to die, and be set back a level. The higher the level the player is, the more features they have access to.
When a player completes a habit, daily, or to-do, they gain silver or gold, depending on the difficulty of the task. Silver is worth a fraction of gold: 100 silver equals 1 gold. Gold and silver can be used to buy rewards - which can either be user-defined, real life rewards, or equipment that can give boosts in-game.
Pets and mounts
When checking off items, sometimes the player will receive an item. The items that can be found are eggs, color potions, and food. The player can combine these to collect a set of 90 pets, which they can display beside their avatar, and 90 mounts, which their avatar can ride.
Players can band together in parties to complete quests. Players can also join guilds and participate in challenges made by other players, where the person with the most consistency in performing a task wins an achievement. The class system is another feature adding complexity to the role-playing aspect of Habitica.
There is also an official mobile application for Habitica. The mobile application was promised if the $25,000 Kickstarter fund goal was reached. In July 2015, a new iOS app was released named "Habitica", and it was revealed that the site would be renamed to match.
Starting on January 11, 2013, Tyler Renelle started a campaign on fund-raising site Kickstarter to improve development of the application with a goal of $25,000. The goal was surpassed: $41,191 was raised by a total of 2,817 people.