Not a fan of the health bar system
As a longtime user of the Duolingo mobile app, I'm not a fan of the new health bar system. I find it to be an unnecessary and even detrimental distraction. I find the fact that I am given a mere five chances to make mistakes before a lesson is failed, to be very frustrating. On top of that, when one fails a lesson, one has to wait either an absurd amount of time for the health bars to refill (around 5 hours per bar of health, a full recharge is over a day!), complete repetitive practice lessons to refill the bars, or pay "gems" to instantly refill the bar. To me, this feels like a less-than-sublte attempt to promote micro-transactions more than anything else. Failed your Italian lesson, and don't want to wait a literal day? Don't want to complete monotonous practice lessons? There's always gems for a low, low price!
This may just be me being cynical, but a language learning app should be far more forgiving of mistakes than this health bar system allows for. Frankly, I've been turned off from using Duolingo since the health bar system's introduction. If I make reasonable mistakes and fail a lesson for a language that I find relatively easy, then I don't stand a chance when it comes to completing lessons for the languages that I consider difficult. Especially those languages that use non-Latin alphabets.
From what I have read, this health bar system seems to be a trial feature that's being tested on the mobile app. Frankly, my preference is that the health bar system be removed entirely. Though, if the health bar system is something that the powers that be wish to keep, then I at least hope that they make serious changes to it, to make it more reasonable and fair.
We all make mistakes, that's part of the learning process, and learning languages can be quite difficult. So please don't punish the users of this app for making understandable and often regular mistakes.
If you want to avoid this feature, you could do the new lessons on the mobile website, and use the app for reviewing and strengthening.
I hate health with a passion! A lot of the "mistakes" that I make are typos and/or auto corrections that I didn't notice or from accidentally hitting the return or check buttons before I'm done typing. A minority of the mistakes are actual errors committed because I don't know the material. It is really frustrating!
Also, several of the listening exercises on the Spanish to English course have no sound, so I "miss" those because I can't hear anything.
I agree. The new system with the health bar system is discouraging me from learning. I am not any longer paying attention to learning, but have to constantly pay attention to my 'health' to ensure that I am not locked out. I don't want to be 'buying' and 'selling' health - I want to learn a language. Goodbye.