Memrise News & Events

Meet Ziggy: Memrise’s New Mascot

as_ziggy_03@3xThe Memrise ranking system will be changing in mid-July, to make room for Memrise’s new learning mascot: Ziggy. We caught up with Luke, one of Memrise’s product managers, to find out more about what the change will mean, and how the design team came up with the idea.

What is the Memrise ranking system, and why is it changing?

As older users will probably know, the Memrise ranks were introduced back in 2012, when Memrise was all about mems and gardening. Since then there have been quite a few changes, including launching two apps, loads of new learning modes, a complete redesign and a ton of tiny improvements.


We felt that the old way of doing thing didn’t really fit in with what we were doing, and needed a bit of love. Similarly, we have almost 5 years worth of data on how we could tweak it to make it slightly better.

So, after brainstorming with the team and testing with real world users, we came up with Ziggy, who you’ll level up as you progress through Memrise.

Who and what is Ziggy?

as_ziggy_133x.pngZiggy is the embodiment of all that is good in the multiverse: Hope, Joy and Knowledge. They’re your personal learning buddy, who’ll grow as your abilities grow, and change as you change.

In terms of what Ziggy is… Nobody knows where Ziggy came from. An egg just showed up one day and out popped Ziggy.

In terms of what Ziggy can be? Ziggy is both Robin and Yoda. They’re a sidekick and an all-knowing mentor. Also, Ziggy is hella cute.

Where did the idea for Ziggy come from?

Ziggy is a little bit their namesake, as they’re an androgynous alien promoting peace, hope and love, and a little bit an amalgamation of every other famous alien to ever exist. From Oh to ET to Alf.

We always knew we wanted a character that made people feel something, and knew that the voice of the character would be super important. Positive, joyful and a bit different.

as_ziggy_07@3xIn terms of visuals, our amazing Product Designer, Jessica, is responsible for how Ziggy turned out. We played around with different concepts from shields to robots to weird floating alien things. What finally became Ziggy made people smile and just looked so SQUIDGY.

When Ziggy gets to the upper levels, you can see more power and intelligence coming through, which should match your abilities. At the upper levels Ziggy becomes almost an omnipotent being, with little body left.

This visual evolution is pretty awesome and exciting, and we’re hoping no matter what level you are, you’ll want to take Ziggy home with you.

What can Ziggy see with his third eye?

The future. Or the past. Or both at the same time. Or pizza. My bet is on pizza.

3O5A9472Hellooooo. I’m Luke and I’m originally from Sydney, Australia, and moved to this sunny (*ahem*) country eight years ago. I’m a Product Manager here at Memrise, handling the more touchy-feely, game-y elements of the product, and before that I was on the design team.

In my non-Memrise time I podcast about beer and music, organise gigs and DJ, brew beer, play in a band and hang out with my wife and 4 year old son.

Feeling inspired to learn a new language with Ziggy? Check out Memrise!




137 responses to ‘Meet Ziggy: Memrise’s New Mascot

  1. After having a longer break, I discover that that are no more memes. What is the reason for that? They were working brilliantly in that way, one had to be creative in linking word and image together. Removing those seems counter productive. So what is the reason, would really like to know/understand.

    • I think we need to fight this together. We need to get answers from Memrise bosses and we need to make them see that we are not happy with the very least. At least we should be entitled to some form of explination. I agree, we would all like to know and understand the reason and we need to request this in number to get the answers we need.

      JOIN THE FIGHT! Lets get the old system back, and lets get answers to why it was changed.

      Jake Symons

  2. “when Memrise was all about mems and gardening”… and speaking of mems, I really miss the feature where you could make mems with pictures. Having a picture to go with my mems really helped things stick; now I’m stuck relying on words alone and I’ve noticed that it’s not as effective. This seems like a no-brainer to me; obviously the more associations you have with a particular memory, the better it will stick in your mind… why on earth did you change that? While I agree with others that the Ziggy is ugly and the new rankings are demotivating, especially for those already at a high level who now suddenly have to get a bazillion points to see any change and when they do it’s just the next number… I still consider that a relatively minor issue practically speaking, compared to the loss of picture mems :-(.

  3. I was thinking about getting Pro next year, but I don’t like to be welcomed as a recruit. What in the world does learning have to do with military???

  4. This new Ziggy Theme really doesn’t fit this page. It might be suitable for 6 year olds, but check your stats, the average user might be older than that. I found the old ranking system much more appropriate for the purpose of this platform. Please make the old ranks available again.

      • I have to agree with you although this has been going on for a while there is still a lot of anger against it by the community.

        We needed to tell memorise and join the right to get the old system back.

      • I have to agree with you although this has been going on for a while there is still a lot of anger against it by the community.

        We needed to tell memorise and join the right to get the old system back.

        There is still a lot we can do there is still hope left to get the old system back

  5. I have recently found this site and like many aspects of it, but that Ziggy thing really puts me off ! (And I may well have been a potential Pro member) As many others have commented, most serious adult learners don’t like to be treated as 6 year olds.

  6. Here’s the main thing that baffles me: pretty much everyone I know who uses Memrise is over 16, and therefore, old enough to shell out money for a pro membership if they so choose. You’ve designed a new ranking system that appeals to 6 year old kids, who have no jobs or disposable income to speak of.

    Obviously their parents can buy them a membership, but do you really have that many young kids using Memrise? I’d always seen the primary money-making audience as high school or college age or older, and there is no appeal to them with this new system. With the old system, there was a sense of progression. With the new system, you’ve just convinced me to stick to a free version – there is no way I’m paying money to level up a discount version of a Pokemon.

    The milestones previously were cool, and urged me to shell out money to quickly learn, gain new badges and join the ranks of overlord. This thing, while cute, I suppose, is not motivating. In fact, I kinda want the option to turn it off on my profile.

    If you’re truly married to this Ziggy idea because the boss’s daughter’s nephew came up with it, then give paid users the option to revert. People would pay for that. I sure would.

    Better yet, do a test: announce for one month to all users free and paid, that they can choose which rank system they want to use, and choosing registers a “vote” within the system. After a month’s time, if Ziggy is truly popular, keep the thing. But I’d be very surprised if that turned out to be the case.

    Remember the example of JCPenney and Coca Cola’s New Coke – changing your product to try and snag new customers isn’t always a good thing, especially when you alienate your old client base and fail to secure a new one. This doesn’t seem to be a bold new marketing scheme as much as an “abandon ship” move on the old one. I don’t see hoardes of six year olds stampeding to Memrise and begging their parents to let them level up Ziggy. I do see a lot of pissed off people who already use Memrise and are old enough to have disposable income (me included), who are not at all happy with their pun-nicknamed rank progression being gone. Bring back the rank, streak, and premium badges. It wasn’t broke, and you never needed to fix it.

    • I agree, I would take this to memrise in an Email. they have not replied to my last email so if we both tried to email them they should listen to us. LETS HAVE OUR VOICES HEARD. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE CONTINUE THE FIGHT, JOIN THE CAMPAIGN, BRING THE OLD SYSTEM BACK. BRING THE

  7. In my opinion, the old system was much better I as I always felt I was competing with my friends. Getting the new rank really made you feel like you achieved something, because with it came a title. A number (or level) just says nothing. Also, if I saw somebody with a title I hadn’t heard about, I could click on my own badge to find out its significance.

    • I agree I think the old system was better
      Join the campaign, lets bring the old system back
      Memrise Bosses need to see the people are unhappy.

  8. Here is the thing: the writer of this article is a close friend and supporter of the designer of Ziggy and none of them wants Luke and his team to be fired (we neither). Also, they love Ziggy as we love our sons (or our pets). So, we need to change the strategy:

    Memrise management board,
    The creation of Ziggy has been a great idea that some people might love. It is good to have such a creative team in your group. But, could you please give the users the chance to choose the system they want to attach to? Since rankings depend on numbers (points) the system will not be affected by the categories: even if names or thresholds are different, still 500 comes after 499 and tables and lists of people can be assorted. The choices would only affect the interface of the user, so it is displayed according to what is more motivational to her/him.
    I am sure many will choose your new idea of Ziggy (there is no need to fire this team, and we encourage them to continue working hard on their project), but others would like to keep the previous system and old rankings.
    Thanks a lot, and we are pleased to see this board is eager to evolve and improve. Maybe we should consider other topics (course contents, response to forums, etc) for future brainstorming and future improvements.

    PS: By the way, before I said I would continue studying but soon after I lost interest. I am trying to re-start now…. irrespective of Ziggy (or in spite of it). Ziggy has become something to fight instead of an insipiring force! hahahaha

    • The Ziggy issue is not worth anyone losing their jobs over.
      Whichever promotion system (Ziggy or Membassador, Memocrat etc) memrise is still a good learning system.
      It would be nice if we had a choice, but memrise may not be able to do it, without extra costs.
      Their computers may not abe able to do it as they stand.
      Remember the words learned vs words forgotten graph they had (which I quite liked).
      There were problems and they didnt fix it, they just discontinued its use.
      They probably needed to use the memory elsewhere.
      So perhaps their computers are not able to sustain 2 grading systems.

    • The management never replied to my message 🙂 I have been trying for a month. Shows you how much they care about their members.

    • “Ziggy has become something to fight instead of an inspiring force!” <– This. My sentiments exactly. I continue to use Memrise *despite* the Ziggy, not in any way inspired by it!

  9. Hello Everyone

    Please see here for an official forum post set up by me. I have left memrise an email so that they can respond and this can be resolved peacefully.

  10. I assume you still have the code for the old ranking system. If you insist on keeping the ridiculous Ziggy system maybe you could give your users (or Pro users) a choice of which system they want to use. I am guessing very few would choose Ziggy!

      • Hello my friends.

        Look at this thread. Read the comments. How many people have commented to GET THE OLD SYSTEM BACK. We want the old system back. It was a good thing. I am a proud supporter of the old system and are here drumming up support in order to get it.

        KEEP POSTING. Keep those comments coming. Post here, post other places, get the word spread out we want the old system. We need Memrise to see this, we need bosses to listen to the people. We need to get our voices heard.

        Join me proud learners, join the campaign Lets us get our voices heard.


  11. I am sorry to say fellow bloggers, but I think this Ziggy mascot is all about marketing (money). They can try to sell memrise to schools, in the hope the teachers are more likely to buy it, if it has a harmless little mascot (Ziggy) that they think may appeal to their young students.
    In that case there is not a hope in hell of them ever returning to the previous grading system.

    • Hi

      Memrise is about making learning joyful. How can it be made joyful if it is about making money. Learning should be for all. Fat Cats should not decide what we are learning.

      We want awnsers. We want memrise to accept the will of the people.

      Thank you for joining the fight. Keep positng, keep commenting MAKE OUR VOICES HEARD.

      Thank you/

  12. I’d just like to ask you something about Ziggy.You poster a message through Whats App to a few of the people in my list without ne knowing it. And the message, which was misunderstood by öne of them,is causing serious trouble for me.How could that have happened?And what can I do to convince that personel it’s not me who sent the message?I’d be really grateful İf you could help me sort put this serious problem.

  13. Ziggy is a piece of crap. You removed a great incentive to level up, all the mem puns. Also, overlord was a dumb max level, I’d much prefer my idea Memsiah. Ziggy is a hot steaming pile of garbage, and I loved the mem puns. I had a pretty high level and it was much better to have a good pun than an unoriginal dumb alien, which I don’t care about. But that’s just my opinion.

  14. First I would like to say the original format was far superior both stylistically and motivationally speaking. I can’t possibly imagine what the purpose this change serves. No offense to the artist but these new mascot designs are horrendous and down right infantile, mind you I said infantile not just childish as there is a distinction. A lot of people using/paying to use Memrise clearly dislike these changes as they don’t fit the core demographic. “Almost 5 years worth of data on how we could tweak it to make it slightly better. So, after brainstorming with the team and testing with real world users, we came up with Ziggy”…really? 5 years worth of data and all that brainstorming and this is what you came up with? Removing the actually good ranking system that motivated people to continue learning, replacing it with levels and a silly cartoon alien. You could have spent all that time “brainstorming” to think of actual ways of improving an already working system instead of gutting that system and subsequently replacing it with something far inferior. For a site about learning you certainly make some illogical and in my opinion down right stupid decisions Memrise team.

    • I have to agree with you. Thank you for commenting. Please join me in getting our voices heard. Please keep commenting, keep letting Memrise know that they are wrong. Please get other people to know as well.

      We need our voices heard and we need to keep getting the support. Tell everyone to support.

      • unfortunately, I don’t think Memrise cares at all. Just look at this – we’ve got like a hundred of negative comments going back more than 3 month, and where is ANY response from Memrise team? Have you seen one? I haven’t:( that’s actually a mystery for me – why they don’t care they can lose their customers?

  15. Hi

    I don’t think the new system works at all. I liked the older levels and would like to go back with them. Memrise Bosses should put their hands up and admit this was a mistake. The mahority shows that we want the old system back. Comments are being posted by hundreds of different people wanting the old system back. Many more probably do and don’t comment to voice that.

    I think we should have a website wide poll which is an optional thing that any member to the site can awnser. There should be one question. Do you prefer the old system back or do you like the new one? There should be two awnsers “Yes” and “No.” This survey should run for a few weeks to get responses from all members. Then the figures from this should be made public.
    If Memrise Bosses were so sure that the new system is a good idea then they have nothing to fear from allowing democray to occur. Democracy is about listerning to the needs of the people. Surley a webstie that encourages “free learning” would also encourage “free speech. As such I request along with my fellow Memrise uses that this survey should be done.

    A closing point to memrise; Listen to the needs of the people. The people want the old system back. Listen to their needs. Act on Them.

    Jake Symons/

  16. Can we have a poll to see how many users would like the old ranking system back? I thought it was much better than the new one, and it seems like the majority of people commenting here agree. Not only were the names for the levels much more interesting, but as far as I remember the numbers of points you had to reach for each level made more sense. And trying to reach Overlord is definitely more motivational than “Level 18” and an uninspiring mascot.

  17. Hello Luke,
    You told us in 8/3:
    “The way in which we tested very different progress visualisation concepts, ranks, icons and characters will be a case study we are planning to share – there was a lot of user testing and feedback involved, from new and existing learners with often unexpected results. We’ll be sharing this in the next month.”
    Two months have passed. What would you like to share with us? Please get rid of Ziggy – Sponge Bob’s friend Sandy looks alike but nicer.

  18. I agree with the above majority. Please re-instate the old ranking system. It gave you something to aim for whilst learning. The whole Ziggy thing is just childish and uninspiring.

  19. I didn’t update my Memrise app since july to keep the old system because I was close to turn Memperor. I reached the 50.000.000 points last night and I am very upset because my level didn’t change to Memperor. I think that if you wanted to change your system, even for a childish one, you should have mantained all the marks of the old system.

  20. Thanks a lot dear memrise team . I started learning Chinese words by memrise some years ago.with a pause of say near two years and I am contineuing well although 60 . I like to be membassador and mempror I mean new Ziggy level system is nonsense , Language Learners need milestones , old ranking system was milestone based and Ziggy not

  21. Hello
    I’m a Pro member. I liked the previous levels. The new system looks childish, I don’t like Ziggy at all. I’m on the level 16 and I want to be Memperor and then Overlord, not some ugly creature. When I looked at the old icon I knew who is who, but now ziggy levels are difficult to distinguish. There is a problem to distinguish between level 16 and 17, changes between levels are difficult to see.

  22. Right now this posting has 87 comments.
    Just 3 users clearly expressed they like the new system.
    At least 60 users clearly expressed they don’t like the new system.

    Either you don’t know your target audience are and your “user testing” was not worth the effort put into it or you didn’t care about the negative feedback from your tests and now hope users will cope with the changes sooner or later.

    I use Memrise for good three years now, thought about a pro membership twice as the general concept of learning is something I like. Now I’m not even sure if I will use Memrise that much in the future or if I should migrate to something else.

  23. I started using memrise not so long ago little more than a month. So I don’t have attachment to the previous pre Ziggy way.
    I like the idea of a mascot, however I don’t get what the different ziggy levels mean. So ends up being something that is there but doesn’t add much

  24. I think what has happened here is a lot of time and effort (money) has been spent developing a bad idea (ziggy).
    The senior staff at memrise who developed ziggy will never admit it is a bad idea, and the junior staff of course will support them, for fear of retribution if they dont.
    I am sad to say under these circumstances we may be stuck with the creepy little mutant.

  25. N-n-no! My daily streak badge with almost 300 days!! TT_TT
    I don’t like it. It doesn’t motivate to learn, ranks are unclear, new mascot is without charisma – it’s evolutions look like separate monsters, not like next stage of one creature and I will never figure out that it is supposed to be my “both Robin and Yoda (…) a sidekick and an all-knowing mentor”. Come on. It does not even give compliments for good work or encourege like an owl from Duolingo.

    • Memrise is an important part of my language learning, but must admit that I much prefer the previous system and could identify much better with it. I agree that taking away the streak clock was a mistake. It would be motivational to have less points between levels at the higher end. Despite being a daily user I have been on the same level for a long time and will not reach the next level for a very long time. This is not very motivational. I hope that the original system can be returned as it seems to be the preference of the vast majority of memrise users.

  26. awful choice. gonna use an old version of app as long as possible, if it isn’t supported any longer, then I quit. I want to be overlord, not some gooey creature.

  27. My current level of Ziggy is really cute. I don’t like the next level’s evolution so much. Could it be possible to modify this system so that as you unlock levels you can then choose which Ziggy evolution that you use? I would like the ability to customize my account in that way.

    (super sad I’ll never get to me a memoth. I thought that badge name was rather clever and cute.)

  28. The new ranking system is garbage – the old one was unique, distinctive & quirky. It brought paying customers to you, and kept them motivated. Ziggy Level 11, 12, 13 etc – that was the best you could come up with? With a brainstorming session and “user feedback”? What’s more worrying is the senior management judgement to make these changes in the first place? You’ve got a great idea for a business – but have a somewhat buggy / inconsistent experience and are trying to support the concept across multiple IT platforms. Messing about with the ranking system should be nowhere near your top 10 of things that urgently need doing.

    Your focus should be on what makes people want to come back to your app / site and what makes them pay for the experience. How do you delight them? Is it more levels with smaller gaps at the higher end – more badges for streaks / coming top 10 in the weekly or monthly lists. Gaining so many points in a single day? Is it the ability to challenge friends. Is it the ability to turn off all the leaderboards and focus on learning. Is it improving the search function to find courses that are interesting or the ability to rate courses and filter courses by rating to identify interesting ones.

    I don’t know…. but you should.

  29. Memrise stands out among other learning systems for several reasons. One (the main) is of course the quality of the lessons and the review system, as well as the learning methodology and the different exercises.
    Also the web site is comfortable, pretty, appealing (everyone prefers a new book with figures in color and nice schemes, and not just boring texts). This also works.
    But I think Memrise gave a big step forward in relation to other systems in making the studies fun. Undoubtedly the badges, and points and change of status and ranking and the sense of “community” where you can see your progress in relation to others, but also your efforts… all of this works.
    I need to study because I have goals and needs. But I also have challenges (work, tired, asleepy…) and sometimes the only thing that kept me studying harder was the competition I had with my wife for the weekly rank. And also reaching new statuses. This force is so strong that when my wife stopped, I followed other people with slightly higher rankings, just to keep the pressure.
    I think the reaction in this forum proves that this is important and I hope the developers do not neglect this. It also proves this is effective in adults, not just in kids (just differently).
    The new concept of an evolution is interesting and the idea is good. The problem is that the new mascot is too childish (and changes between levels are not big). Might be good for kids (and maybe the idea targeted this group of users) but not for adults. The other problems is that the names of the levels suck. Before they were creative and cool.
    1) can you bind both ideas? (evolutionary track with cool names for each level)
    2) if finding a compromise between adults and kids is difficult (I dont think so, many cartoons today target all ages): can you have two ranking systems? The user could choose which one to follow or it could depend on the age of the user
    3) beware of too big steps between levels: give us a candy from time to time or we will starve between acts, hahaha
    Unlike others in this forum, I will continue studying. But much of the fun is gone with the new system. Hopefully it will evolve soon…

  30. I’ll add my voice to the multitude of downvotes a give a brief explanation.
    I have an obsessive personality and the old system played on that by presenting me with cool and funny tags awarded by a points system and overall got me studying different languages, which I suck at, a lot more of the time.

    I do not want to be a pink cat hybrid thing and have no desire to evolve Ziggy, however innocent he may be in all this.

    By changing the ranking system, in my opinion the best and most unique quality of Memrise, you have shot yourself in the foot and thrown away your edge that made a lot of people compulsive, and thankful, language learners.

  31. Hello Memrise

    I’m a Pro member. I.A.N

    The new Ziggy thing is not so good. The older system/style was MUCH better. Ziggy makes no sense to anything Memrise and the feels so out of place for the memrise system. Ziggy system is not better than the old rank system, and actually is more confusing. I really cannot understand the reason for this change. It seems the “Design Team” has run out of decent ideas. May I suggest you as them to look at the ‘user feedback, fixes, and requests’ email instead of designing the newly created Duddy, (sorry, Ziggy).

    Take this constructively.
    1. Get rid of Ziggy. The concept if immature and doesn’t blend with the Memrise system at all. In other words; it doesn’t help explain, demonstrate, or show rankings any better than the last system. In addition; I’m a mature adult, and these child-like themes are so unappealing.
    2. Bug feedbacks – work on these more.
    3. User Feedback / Fixes / Function Requests (THE MOST IMPORTANT) thing you should be eager to check daily. Find the consensus and implement it.
    4. A personal peeve with the Android app I hate. Voice/audio playback after an answer can’t be swiped away to the next word. I have to sit and listen to the(often poorly) recorded audio of the lesson.
    5. No clear way to renew my subscription in my dashboard. How is a Memrise user meant to renew their Pro account when there is no CLEAR way to do so?

    It your users who make Memrise successful, please remember that.

    Please take this feedback constructively from a long time user of Memrise. In the time I have seen the app get a heck of a lot better, but not 100% better. Keep trying please. You get ‘wraps’ for sure, but I’m still going to keep pushing you for more and better work. Users and paying user deserve the best you can do, and then some.

    Thank you

  32. I would also like to add my congratulations to memrise developing such an effective online learning system. The old ranking system was just a nice little perk, to have while you learn, and far better than this new ‘Ziggy’ ranking system someone in there has come up.
    I think most people probably couldnt care less about rankings now, so why bother with it memrise?.

  33. First of all: congratulations to all developers and supporters of the memrise idea! Great idea!
    On the subject now: I thought my reaction was a bit conservative, attached as I use to be to old ways. But I see in these forum that most people share the same idea. I also loved the old ranking system: the names had more meaning than just numbering levels, and were very imaginative. And the level badges were also a good incentive.
    Please, consider recovering the best of the past and mixing it with the new evolution. Giving new names to the ziggies (OK, let’s accept them) might help. Something like moving from ziggy erectus to ziggy habilis or ziggy sapiens…
    And bring back the incentive of the badges if possible…

    • Clarification: my congratulation was for the “Memrise concept”, not the “new ranking system”. Just in case it was not clear enough, hehehe

      • you are so right, I was so close to memperor and it really gave me the incentive to work harder for the past year, but now…anyway ziggy is not a very good idea from my opinion

  34. There has been no comment or response from memrise to the MAJORITY NEGATIVE views of we blogger, memrise users to this new Ziggy system.
    Luke from memrise has said, “The way in which we tested very different progress visualisation concepts, ranks, icons and characters will be a case study we are planning to share – there was a lot of user testing and feedback involved, from new and existing learners with often unexpected results. We’ll be sharing this in the next month.”
    This blog certainly doesnt support the need for any change to a ‘Ziggy’ concept.
    Now Its time to vote and show memrise your dissatisfction.
    My Avatar appears in most Cebuana Visayan language courses.
    I first changed it so it appeared Ziggy was being attacked by a giant cat,
    Now I have Ziggy appearing to be sparayed with poisonous bug spray.
    Just upload the picture imagining Ziggy to be in it, in the bottom right corner.
    I am looking forward to how imaginative you all can be.
    Sadly I think the reaction from memrise may be to prevent us from doing this later on, so do it now while you can.

    • Let me say it clearly: It’s not only my opinion that the new system, including “Ziggy”, is horrible. Please, return to the old system as soon as possible and think twice before changing a successful system.

  35. So this is Ziggy version 1.0…… (Luke : “As we mentioned above, this is very much v1.0 of Ziggy. We’ll continue to improve and iterate on this to make it better.”)
    I cant imagine anyone aspiring to be a creepy little green Alien Lizard at any level, unless they are 6 years old.
    I cant wait for Ziggy v10.0
    Hopefully by then it will be just memrise v10.0 with the juvenile Ziggy concept long forgotten, and more adult style rankings being used.
    I know, why not save time and go straight to doing that with v1.2.

    • Didn’t realize it before but you changed the concept from gardening and planting which is a Biblical concept into a completely atheistic concept. Of course there was an idea in the previous ranks in becoming closer to a supreme being (God) but now you introduce these creatures to become an “omnipotent being.” The word concept comes from the Latin concipere (past participle conceptus) “to take in and hold; become pregnant.” In the Bible, it refers to planting good seeds in your heart and mind in order to bear good fruit. As a parallel, it is greatly distressing that you are pushing to nurture these creatures. Alien conception? No thank you. I’ll stick with gardening. After all, adam (Hebrew word for man) is linked to the Hebrew word adammah (ground). We all are pastures of ground for God to plant good seed into us to bear good fruit. I frankly like that concept far more. I also feel it is a deeply rooted truth that many to try to weed out. I can’t but love etymology. You see through neologian’s manipulations. It is the first step of protecting your mind from other people’s mind control and seeing through those who use words for devious purposes.

      • Uh…. I used to be a big HATER of the new system, but after reading your comments, I have begun to despise the old system. Congrats. You just converted an average Joe into a Ziggyist 😀

  36. Please give us the option to stay with the old system. I really don’t care for Ziggy, it’s too childish, and taking away the streak badges reduces my motivation to come here everyday. (I had an 85-day streak going!) Perhaps kids using this system like the new mascot, but it’s kind of insulting for a middle-aged person. And I agree with the other commenters, the levels are now too far apart. This change is not an improvement.

  37. Hi I like & don’t like Ziggy. I like as it seems to be motivating reaching the next level. but i am already on level 16 and reaching the next level 17 is way too far away.

    Suggestion: it would be challenging if I see let’s see the 5 player above and below me. So I have a yardstick or goal to reach. maybe show me the overall position I am in (i used to be below 400 but now i have no idea … would be nice).

  38. We hear you and we are taking in all your feedback. There are fair points that we are planning to act upon – from adding more ranks and making the progress more motivating for long time learners, as well as rethinking personal bests (namely, streaks) and how to visualise them better.

    The way in which we tested very different progress visualisation concepts, ranks, icons and characters will be a case study we are planning to share – there was a lot of user testing and feedback involved, from new and existing learners with often unexpected results. We’ll be sharing this in the next month.

    As we mentioned above, this is very much v1.0 of Ziggy. We’ll continue to improve and iterate on this to make it better.

    – Luke
    Product Manager

    • A few suggestions from a faithful Memrise user:
      Make the avatars look cooler and more aggressive-looking, or abandon them altogether
      If you don’t abandon the avatar idea, here are a few suggestions:
      Make the avatar evolutions more consistent and not the current ”species-jumping”
      People want to be Batman, not Robin (keep that in mind when designing the new avatar)
      Let the avatar congratulate you on your progress and do Pokemon-like stuff
      Reduce the GIGANTIC gap between levels
      Bring back the Badges (…or maybe virtual coins to customise the avatar… just saying)
      Make the Memrise ecosystem COOL, not childish
      People work more (and do better work), when they expect a REWARD!!! Remember that!
      Make the system addictive and game-y.

  39. Does anyone from Memrise even read the comments here?

    As many others who commented here, we pay for the service and we deserve at least an answer for the removed day streak badge.

    The new levels do not make sense either, instead of a cool sounding title to strive for, you get a childish cartoon with Lvl number, really?!

  40. As far as the new changes go unlike some of the commenters here, I don’t have anything against Ziggy. I can appreciate the creativity of the evolutions. (+ They ARE quite cute, and I have nothing against a bit of cute on my profile.)
    However much I liked the witty old titles I can get over losing the opportunity of becoming a Memperor, even though I was almost half-way there.
    But the sudden erasure of the Daily Goal Streak badge is a serious low blow.
    It takes so much of the fun away and it destroys the concept of learning through competition. I had a – not very subtle – battle with my yearmates over the DGS badge and I was even getting close to beating my previous top score of almost 300 days, but suddenly it doesn’t look so important to keep on setting aside the time for learning every day. Neither of us will know how the others are doing unless we stick each others’ phones/computers under the others’ noses. Just keeping it about the points means only logging at times and doing a bit more in one go will have exactly the same results as keeping to the daily routine.
    I’ll keep doing the daily goal for now. For my own sake and due to hoping that the streak-badge will be brought back in some form… Please bring it back somehow.

  41. I couldn’t agree more with you all, the new system appeared out of the blue without any real need for it, the old levels where clear and inspiring – Ziggy level 11 doesn’t have the same meaning (and btw it took days for a link to any explanation to appear). The overall look is infantile and does not seem to address your core audience. Taking away the streak badges was a mistake – seeing that grow really motivates me to continue a little each day, I was hoping to beat my previous 150 day streak but without my badge to remind me it will not be the same. Please don’t mess with the site when there is no need to do so. It would be a great acknowledgement of your adult users to reinstate the old system and let people choose which they woudl liek for themselves.

  42. Too childish, too big, bye badges… and the color purple everywhere is really ugly and boring. Sorry, but the visual update was a great fail. 😦

  43. The old ranking system was better hands down. But guys, in the end why we all joined Memrise in the first place? I bet for learning a new language, so just keep up with it… anything else is somewhat unimportant. Unless points or badges were your major motivation…

    • Yeah, I guess we should admit that. :p
      I also noticed that the pages where we actually learn something don’t feature any ziggies. That motivates to spend more time learning and not waste it staying on the home page, looking at the profile, enjoying our glorious stats, etc. 🙂

  44. Sorry – I have to agree with the majority. I think the idea of choosing the Ziggy or the old version is a good one – like Harry Potter having 2 different covers – one for children, one for adults.
    Really disappointed at the loss of daily streaks and am concerned that my students will lose enthusiasm for memrise as a result

  45. It seems like the change to Ziggi was to inspire children to learn different languages, but I would think that the majority of your users are adults…especially the paying ones. In my opinion, this change is just plain stupid and probably created by a yet-to-mature video game player. Give me back the adult version, por favor!

  46. I also agree with most of you. The previous ranking system was very motivating as it was giving me a sense of improvement, becoming a real pro etc. Now with Ziggy I feel like this app is for children and I don’t really care if he grows, it’s about MY progress in learning so I should feel that I’m improving.

  47. At least name the levels. Reaching level 14 is not motivating at all than becoming a Memperor or something similar. I know you want to give the app an space-like appeareance but this is ridiculous. The old system was working perfectly, you should have only renovated every badge to a fresh look. I really liked upgrading my status, it felt like you become more important as you progress.
    I wonder who thought this was a good idea.
    It wasn’t.

  48. I agree with most of the people here. The streak badge was really motivating (I was recently trying to break my 20-day streak and get at least 25, but then it changed). I also think that Ziggy looks really childish. Having just recently upgraded again to Pro, i was really disappointed to see change and likely won’t be upgrading again in the future. Sorry…I really loved your app, but Ziggy’s gotta go.

    Dear Memrise, I’m sure you have very good research and reasons for this overall, but please at least bring back the daily streak badges. That was so motivating to keep doing a little work in a course every single day. Already I am feeling like what is the point to going back and reviewing a course I have a 269-day streak in when it doesn’t change my daily streak badge anymore and now I just see Ziggy. I’m at Level 15 — I need 18,000,000 points to get to the next level and see Ziggy change! That doesn’t motivate me on a daily basis. Quite the opposite. It feels pointless. I thought daily motivation was understood to be the key here.

  50. In hopes of shifting back to the old system I would like to state my opinion that this new change is childish and unmotivating. I’m guessing that the majority of users are over the age of 5, so I’m not sure why you’ve chosen this style.

  51. Sorry Memrise. My phone just updated your app, and I see that I’m not at level 1 but at 16. Still, I was really looking forword to being an Overlord. I don’t know why, maybe it just appealed to my authoritarian side; ruler of the universe and all that. Oh well. I guess I’ll have to settle for SQUIDGY. At least you could have made it “cool’ tather than “cuddly” by putting Bowie in there; Ziggy played guitar …..LOL

  52. Sorry. I know my post seems a bit harsh to poor Ziggy. But really, I worked so hard to get to the Memperor level and to have that taken away now, just really makes me angry.

  53. Dear Memrise,
    I have been a paying memrise user for around three years. My score is about 76,000,000 million points; 24, 000, 000 more and I would have been an Overlord! What am I now? Ziggy level f@@@### 1. You idiots. I have seen many changes in your app over the last few years and each time have adjusted accordingly, but this time you have gone too far!!! Either you put back the level system, or I will be quitting your app. I know I’m only one user, but I’m sure there are many others who feel as I do. I will give u one week to fix this issue or you can say goodbye to my monthly payments!!!!

    • Hello Richard, I share your feelings. I was about to reach out for “Meminence” … nothing left but a number. D I S A P P O I N T I N G !!! Not a good idea of you memrise to take this part of identification. Please change it back! By the way… I wrote my old level and the best streak in my profile … just to remind me of better times 🙂

  54. Having been a user of memrise for over a year now, i find these new changes somewhat childish and petty,what was wrong with the old ranking system IF IT AINT BROKE DONT FIX IT

  55. I don’t like the new system either. As others have mentioned here, it doesn’t motivate you to get to the next level.

  56. I understand why the new mascot would be appealing, but would it be possible to choose which ranking system you want to see? The idea of becoming a Memperor motivates me more than reaching level 20. Each rank in the previous system felt like a good reward for your effort. Maybe some days I would spend another half hour because I was “only 100,000 points away from becoming mnemonist”, Now I will be 100,000 points away from being level 14… Not fun, no more titles/ranks to discover. After level 14 comes 15 and then 16 and on and on. Why not keep the rank system and draw ziggy accordingly?

    • I don’t like the new system either – I found the old one motivating and this new one is purely juvenile – I mean “squidgy”? Really? It smacks of being back in the classroom in my years as a primary school teacher! Please is there any way we can have the old system back? I’m quite new to Memrise and was enjoying my learning and I don’t understand why you would change something that works for something that doesn’t?! I’m VERY unimpressed:(

  57. I’m sad about the new design. As someone who has been using this site for 3 years, I liked the clever names for the ranks and the poetic idea of knowledge growing like a flower.
    It was simple, not over the top and appealing. The design was focussed on learning, the joy and the beauty of it. The streak badges were a great motivating improvement too!
    This new design takes the poetry and the the beauty away from memrise. I will still use it and enjoy its functionality, but I think Memrise should think about their audience. They are more mature than Ziggy.
    It’s such a shame, I wish there was a little time machine for this website.

  58. OK, I know, people tend to hate changes, but… Seriously, why do service owners feel such a terrible itch to ruin something once in awhile? I don’t mind this Ziggy guy (although he seems completely unnecessary and his name somehow reminds of the Third Reich), but I miss the badges and even feel decrease in motivation. 😦 Well, I’ll take it as a challenge, but honestly… It would be so much better to just leave things their good old way…
    P.S. Show some mercy, give me back at least my Daily Goal Streak badge!

  59. sorry, I don’t like the new system. I was looking forward to reach the Meminence level. I would like to have a choice back to the familiar system.

  60. Sorry, but Ziggi looks like… eeem, OK, ugly. Sorry, I know it’s not very polite but it’s true. The old system was really nice.

  61. I liked the old system way better. I don’t like this gamified style they came up with. A year ago or so they had this complete work over and I just can’t take this seriously anmore. I’m not 8. I’m here because I want to dedicate time towards a goal. If a flashy design is what keeps you here, there is something wrong with your motivation to learn a language and you probably won’t do it for long anyway. I liked this as source of knowledge rather than source of cheap dopamine.

  62. I have been using Memrise for about a year. These front end changes are infantile…unless your main target market is now parents with pre-school children. Please change it back or give an option to learners over 5 years old to stay with the existing layout.

  63. sorry, I have tried, but I cannot warm up to ziggy, and I certainly would not like to take ziggy home with me. I actually find him…her…it, a bit creepy.

  64. Actually liked the old system better. It could use additional levels (so in that sense the change is good), but this ugly blob that now sits in the corner of the app and can’t be turned off… ugh.

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