Monday, November 25, 2013


In order to obtain some feedback on our ideas of the game "Climb or Die" we did some interviews with people that are within our target user group - so potential players. We prepared a general catalogue of possible questions. The first part asks some general information about the attendee and his attitudes towards video games. In the second part we show and explain our hand drawn storyboards and ask specific questions about it. We performed the interviews and tried to gather some positive input to our project.

The Questions

First part

  • What is your name?
  • What is your age?
  • What is your profession?
  • What is your oppinion on video games?
  • How many hours a week do you spend gaming on average?
  • On what platforms do you play these games?
  • Have you ever played interactive games with movement controllers?
  • Where would you play such games (location/setting)?
  • Would you be willing to play such a game in public?
  • Do you see any reasons that stand against public game play?
  • You may have already seen lots of public displays. Would you like more of them to be interactive?
  • What can such a display do to grab your attention?

Second part (after showing and explaining the storyboards)

  • Would you like to play the game you've just seen?
  • How much time would you spend playing this game in a public place?
  • Would you like to select your difficulty level in advance?
  • Would you like to have a (public viewable) high score - possibly with a small picture of you/your face?
  • Do you have any additional ideas about the game? What feature do you thing would be great to have?

The Users

  1. Ralf is 31 and works as a carer for the elderly. He spends around 10 hours a week playing video games, mainly on his PC but also on mobile devices. He never played using a movement controller before but would like to try - even in public (in waiting areas, trains, stations and even at traffic lights) - but only occasionally and if it's not awkward.
  2. Kerstin is 25 and currently is a student. She likes video games for helping against boredom, but besides that she won't miss something if she doesn't play them. So she only spends 15 minutes a week on playing video games on laptop and smartphone. She played games using movement controllers before but she would play such games in public only if no embarassing movements are required.
  3. Angelika is 23 and works as a motion artist in a small company in Berlin. She is no hardcore gamer but has played several games before. Also, she has experience with some motion controlled games on Playstation 3 and Nintendo Wii. She would not play in a public place because of the embarassement and competitive pressure.
  4. Julia is 22 and currently is a medical trainee. She played video games on Playstation when she was younger but nowadays she has no time for that. She thinks that games have a too large impact on the social life of people. If at all, she plays games on her smartphone. She has played games with Eye Toy. In general, she would only play motion games on parties or private events with friends because of embarassement.
  5. Burak is 27 and recently graduated with a computer science degree. He plays around 30 min every day on his PC or on consoles with his friends. He had tried motion controllers on Playstation, Xbox, and Wii. He doesn't want to invest any time into public displays, finds it distractive and prefers a private setting.

The Empathy Map

To organize and thus better understand the results of the interviews we created an Empathy Map.

Quotes and Defining Words
"I would play such games when I'm drunk."
"Would be nice while standing at the traffic lights."
"No silly level selection!" (2 x)
"Keep it simple."
"How should this work e.g. with 100 people standing at a station around me?"
"Give me some goodies and I'll play it longer"

Thoughts and Beliefs
The only use of video games is killing boredom.
(5 x) Privacy is important (no highscore picture!)
Games like these should be nice and colourful, but keep it short.
 (3 x) No longer than a minute or two.
Public displays are rarely used.
Actions and Behaviors
Obvious clues of the interactivity of public displays (i.e. blinking text message, animations in sync with walking pace) will get my attention.
Would be funny if the game reacts and talks to me while going by.
Feelings and Emotions
(4 x) I don't want to make embarrassing moves in public.
No fidget and no awkward movements!
I am afraid of failing at the game in public.

The Findings and Design Principles

Based on the answers and suggestions of our interviews we found that public displays are not popular with our interviewees. If the game bears a high risk of failing, people are afraid to make a fool of themselves. In addition, we found that few people do have experience with motion controls. When they have, it is only with friends for example at a party. 

As for the design principles, we found that the game should be simple, fun and colorful. It is of great importance to limit embarassing moves and round length to a minimum. The idea of a highscore picture system is not popular because of privacy concerns.

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