This week marked Inksmith’s first week of the second prototype of the semester. Josie recommended us a number of existing storybook apps to prime us for thinking of new methods of interaction and text presentation before giving us our newest manuscript: Animal Serenade.
Animal Serenade is a storybook from Kindermusik, a company dedicated to creating music that very young children can participate in. Most of the team attended one of Kindermusik’s music classes, where a teacher read Animal Serenade to a class of kids and their parents attending. The class really helped us get a better idea of our target audience, as well as the way that the story usually gets performed and participated in with children.
In this vein, and from what we learned in our last prototype’s timeline, we decided to focus on two main interactions that would work throughout the whole manuscript: activating the music in the scene, and activating progressive animations in the scene from special vocabulary words in the text. Since the main basis of these interactions will be the same in each scene, it will free up our programmers more, and hopefully allow us to accomplish our priorities more easily this cycle.
We brainstormed various interactions that would allow you to switch from scene to scene, and eventually settled on a slider mechanic on the sun. We noticed that each scene in Animal Serenade appeared to take place at different times of the day, so we decided to implement a system where sliding the sun across the sky would rotate the world underneath to different scenes of the story. We otherwise made storyboards of the more individualized interactions and animations and sent them to Josie.
We have thus far made our first special vocabulary word animations, created the functionality of having lines of dialogue come on to the page from off-screen, and made a first rendition of the spinning disc world.
We’ll continue to unpackage all the art assets and sound files given to us by Kindermusik and continue with full speed ahead on the prototype of Animal Serenade. We hope that we can have a milestone of completing one (out of seven total) scene’s main interactions of basic text animation and music activation by Wednesday, when a representative of Kindermusik will arrive at the ETC to take a look at the progress of the prototype.