As the specter of Halves looms over us (we can’t believe that it’s already been six weeks!), Team Face-2-Face has been busy iterating on our prototype designs through paper prototyping, and our programmers are hard at work porting our paper prototypes to a mobile device. Hopefully by next Monday, we can finally playtest two of our prototypes on an actual smartphone!

But before we talk more about that, let’s get into…


The Work this Week

Liam and Ashley demonstrating our first pass at getting the split screen function to work. We're using a mask in order to indicate when the camera detects the presence of a face, which while helpful development-wise, does look a bit horrifying in practice!

Last week, our programmers were busy trying to figure out how to implement some of the technical features that our prototypes would require in order to be functional. Upon our meeting this Monday, we learned that they had made a lot of breakthroughs on the tech:

  • While initially the “multiple face detection” feature of ARKit did not work (at least in the demo they provided), we were actually able to get multiple face detection to work on a single camera, with up to 3 faces getting detected at once!
  • Based on some helpful feedback from Maria Montenegro’s project visit last week, we were able to crack splitting the screen of the phone in half, as well as being able to control how the screen is split in half (horizontal, diagonal, or vertical splits)
  • Chang was able to successfully attach a Unity object to facial element (in this case, a block attached to an eyebrow). However, getting the object to move in concert with the actual part of the face is still a WIP…
Chang modeling our newly minted object-face attaching function!

On the design end, we each iterated a bit on the paper prototypes we tested internally last Thursday, and opened up playtesting to the rest of the ETC this Monday!


We got some really useful results overall, which we’ll group by prototype below.

Week 6 Playtests


                        Some pictures of our lovely playtesters trying out our first and second prototypes!

Prototype 1: "Face-Matching Game"

However, we discovered a potential issue with both our game format and this particular round of playtests, namely that, for the most part, those who signed up to playtest were paired with someone they knew. We were fortunate enough to have one team of first years who, having never worked together either during BVW or Visual Story, were relative strangers to one another. According to their feedback, despite not knowing each other all that well going into the game, one of them did feel a little bit closer to the other person after playing through our face-matching paper prototype. This is good news for our overall design, as it seems that we may be hitting our transformational goal from the design end, even if our tech prototype is not yet ready to test!

Prototype 2: "Cooperative Face Game"

Generally speaking, our guests thought this prototype provide very new game experiences. 

  • Different groups of people have very different results. Outgoing people think it is fun to make funny faces in front of people but shy people consider that they do not want to do funny faces to people.

  • The interest curve for player 2 is not low. Actually they think it is fun because of on-going interactions between two players.

  • Sound feedback is very helpful to improve player 2’s experience

  • Conversations happen but without too much eye contact

  • Players prefer simple game mechanics



Prototype 3: "AR Creature Herding"

Generally speaking, people feel confused about this prototype. People found it is fun to make ridiculous faces but it is not promote social engagement in an effective way. Once they learn what each player has to do, they basically just do their own thing


Plans for Next Week

So, in summary, we will be trying to accomplish the following by next week



  • Finish up a playable mobile version of our two final prototypes (hard deadline by next Monday)
  • Polish our game design documents for each of our prototypes
  • Determine an appropriate art style for our game (regardless of which prototype we go with)
  •  Start working on our Halves slide deck

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