Thanks to 1/4s this week, we get the opportunity to review our past work. During the walkthrough, there were several questions that faculty asked frequently: Why are you doing this project? Who is your target audience? What’s the unique point of this project? What questions do you want to answer by prototyping? Unfortunately we are not able to, or lack of preparation for these questions. And it was at the meeting when we realized that we were missing the preproduction part before starting to build prototype. In some ways, we were treating this project like a round 3 of BVW, in which we were assigned to the exercise bike platform and asked to build a game around it. We were too foucused on making prototypes while paying little attention to what we want out of them.
After the 1/4 walkthroughs we took some time doing research on target audience and reviewed the survey about people’s exercise patterns which we sent out earlier. We also had follow-up meetings with Dave and Jessica, who showed noticable interest during our walkthroughs and willing to share more thoughts with us. Dave suggusted us treating ourselves as target audience. This could not only make it easier to find out motivations, but also allow us to do playtest ourselves. Jessica used her past project as example to show us the importance of “revert thinking” – try to think of what is keeping users from exercising, and the user behavior before they will launch the game/app.
On Friday before the 1/4 sitdowns, we started another round of brainstorming to have a clear picture of our target audience demographic. Based on the research and survey result, we listed the user portrait, design pillars, motivations/barriers, and some game ideas and questions we would like our prototypes to answer. For now our target audience would be the college students like us, currently working from home. They usually don’t have a fixed daily schedule, but still try to keep fit through exercising. Link to the jamboard could be found here: https://jamboard.google.com/d/1-DM-T2KNrX6Lf1_Zp4vjlrWAXVIY9B0jP4OnI21GkY8/edit?usp=sharing
The next prototype will be an idle game which people can play while they are working. We will try to figure out a way to not distract people from work, while also provide them with engaging experiences so that they will likely come back at daily pace. During the sitdowns we shared our reshaped plan with Mike and Carl, and they all expressed interest and offered some valuable suggestions for the direction we are going.
For the next week, we will first brainstorm on the details about the gameplay of the prototype and start all the work. Besides, since the cadence sensors we ordered earlier has arrived, our developers will also be setting things up to make sure we are able to collect the data we want.