Week Thirteen Newsletter

Team VT Newsletter
Week Thirteen (4-16-2012)

With Friday’s play test looming we needed to kick it into high gear and push a lot of new content, functionality and feedback abilities into the simulation on both the Web-player site as well as the Facebook application. We focused most of our attention towards polishing and cleaning up the audio, visual and textual cues designed to help our guests quickly gain access to the simulation and easily understand the controls.

So far we have sent our simulation to around fifty individuals that cover a wide range of skill sets, gender, age, experience and knowledge of how to control movement within a 3D space. Aside from the students within the building we aimed to target a middle age, non-gamer, demographic that would give honest feedback regarding the effectiveness and intuitive nature of our tutorial, UI and controls. As soon as the input from our embedded survey begins to slow we will compile this data and hopefully find trends of both positive and negative feedback that will help target problem areas.

For our survey we aimed to gather passive data as opposed to asking our guests to ‘tell us what you think’ so we curtailed the questions to ask where they went, what they saw and how they got there. From this we will clearly be able to determine if they understood the menu interface, knew how to use the combination of keyboard and mouse to propel through space and finally if they enjoyed the simulation enough to stay for a sufficient amount of time to explore.

Upon releasing the simulation to the public we quickly began to find a number of bugs throughout the hierarchy of controls and functionality. During this coming week, the final week before softs, we will transform into pest control and begin a furious sweep of bugs. Despite the semester is coming to a close we must ensure the stability and validity of our system in order to keep the project alive. A stable experience along with detailed documentation of all the interconnected pieces of this simulation will help to make the hand off at the end of the semester, and hopefully to the next team, that much smoother.

With the majority of build time running out we will soon be moving into the presentation stage with three major dates coming up. First we will have our soft opening in which Team VT will present to the faculty our final deliverable with all content and functionality complete. We will have our thirty second and three minute videos completed that will be used for promotional material. Following softs we will be hosting a media day at the ETC where Team VT will present again to select media outlets and honored guests as well as give these outlets a chance to explore the simulation. Finally in the second week of May we will be giving our final presentation to the entire ETC community via a live streaming video feed.

Links and material used for these presentations will become available as soon as they are created.

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