Card marketing and technology company Dynamics launched a new game-based rewards system that card issuers can use with traditional plastic cards, with Key Bank among the first issuers to offer the program to consumers.

The company, which first made a name for itself developing battery-powered cards that can rewrite the magnetic stripe, is offering the rewards program for credit, debit and prepaid accounts.

To participate in the rewards program, consumers collect game pieces at each transaction and win rewards after they accumulate a predetermined combination of tokens, which "provides consumers with orders of magnitude more perceived value," Dynamics CEO Jeff Mullen said during a demonstration at the FinovateFall conference, ongoing this week in New York.

The program diversifies Dynamics beyond its flagship interactive cards, which struggled to take off in a pilot with Citibank, and that some experts have deemed impractical, largely because of their higher cost.

Issuers can send marketing emails to cardholders about the rewards game and consumers can track their progress online. When paired with prepaid accounts, the new marketing program can attain a similar level of transaction volume and customer acquisition and retention as traditional high-affinity rewards systems, Mullen said.

Key Bank is using the rewards program to incentivize its account holders to load cash on the prepaid card that it issues, which reduces costs and increases interchange fee revenue, Brandon Nowac, the bank's prepaid cards team leader, said during the presentation.

"We want to convert check and cash-heavy consumers to a more safe and cost-effective method with a prepaid card," he said, encouraging them to bypass the ATM and transact directly at the point of sale and online using the prepaid card.

Dynamics also presented its line of plastic cards that include images and branding to the card's magnetic stripe, like a picture of a baseball field on a card branded for trading card company Upper Deck, or a basketball-themed card with a mag-stripe that looks like the texture of a basketball.

"We took the largest area of unexplored branding and branded it," Mullen said.

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