Beyond : two souls

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Quantic Dream proposes games that challenge the definition and nature of gameplay itself. In doing so, it also faces specific usability issues and proposes solutions to others. Many articles about the game discuss how the game fits in game design theory concepts like how Beyond Two Souls addresses game and play. This one focuses on its strength and weaknesses in terms of usability and user experience, in particular in comparison to the previous titles of the studio. Let’s have a look at some of the good ideas to learn from, and some of the issues that remain.

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How does multi-tasking influence the player experience ?

multitasking behaviorHow do task interuptions and multitasking affect the player experience ? There are several reasons why a player can interupt his task. In game elements can distract him from his current goal and replace it by a new, secundary one. Real life can also interfere with the gaming experience and involve task interuptions in play.

In order to gather a better understanding of the inpact of task interuptions on the gaming experience, we have conducted a short study on task interuption. We asked players to tell us what else they did (in real life) while playing, and how it affected their experience.

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How do users really interact with their mobile devices : an activity analysis

In a previous part of the metro studies, we had a close look at how users interact with their mobile devices, by observing a large panel of users and taking snapshots of their activity.

To go further in the analysis, this article will dissect the way users interact with their mobile devices by analyzing timed interaction sequences on 110 users, in real life situations.

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A game usability review of Triple town

Screenshot_2014-02-25-08-44-39Triple town

Triple town is a mobile puzzle game by Spryfox that has kept me addicted for quite a while, despite the free to play time limiting features. In this article, I will introduce the game’s strength, then walk you through some of the usability issues that would be worth fixing to make the experience even more enjoyable.

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Do users interact with their mobile devices with their dominant hand ?

A key to success, when designing anything that will be used by a human being, is understanding how it will be used. Since I believe understanding behavior implies taking in account the natural contexts in a holistic approach, while cutting up the problem in digest chunks, I decided to conduct a series of humble studies, which hopefully will provide interesting and unexpected insights into mobile user behavior.

Part 3 : Left or right hand ?

Left vs. Right Hand mobile interaction

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How does the location affect user interactions with their mobile devices

A key to success, when designing anything that will be used by a human being, is understanding how it will be used. We’ve seen that the task and condition in which the user impacts their behavior. Their location where they use their phone also has an impact on how they interact with their mobile devices. The “metro studies” is a project of multiple humble studies, which hopefully will provide interesting and unexpected insights into mobile user behavior.

Part 2 : The effect of location on mobile interactions

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How do users really hold and interact with their mobile devices ?

A key to success, when designing anything that will be used by a human being, is understanding how it will be used. A designer can rely on psychology, physiology, logic, imagination and experience to predict how a user will. Conducting user tests of a service or product provides valuable data to make a concept user friendly. However, initial decisions are often based on assumptions and long debates with clients, in particular when mobile design is involved.

Since I believe understanding behavior implies taking in account the natural contexts in a holistic approach, while cutting up the problem in digest chunks, I decided to conduct a series of humble studies, which hopefully will provide interesting and unexpected insights into mobile user behavior. This article presents the first of those, inspired from Seven Hoober’s study on How people naturally hold  their mobile devices, published on UXmatters.

Part 1 : How do users hold and interact with their mobile devices ?

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Planet exploration in the Mass Effect series

The Mass Effect planet exploration gameplay evolved greatly from the original game, until the last sequel. This article reviews the approaches to planet exploration in each of the 3 games, and studies how each would influence the player’s behaviors and enjoyment of the feature.

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Gamification at Work by Janaki Kumar & Mario Herger – Book Review

By Steve

Gamification at Work is a new book designed for practitioners to introduce people to implementing gamification on an enterprise level in the workplace. Through promoting best practises from user research, the book aims to avoid the bad design which apparently will cause 80% of current gamified applications to fail. Here’s what I thought.

 

I’ve previously discussed some of the problems with gamification created by generic implementations of the mechanics and a lack of insight into the player. This book aims to avoid these issues by promoting a UCD inspired “Player Centred Design” methodology, taking advantage of the techniques from user Lire l’article…

Source: Game User Research

Efficient Playtesting : what every producer should know

Andrée-Anne Boisvert, usability expert pour ubisoft, nous a présenté plusieurs méthodes d’ergonomie et illustré celles ci par des exemples concrets d’application. Vous trouverez dans cette première partie la présentation des méthodes qu’elle a mis en avant. Je détaillerais les applications dans un prochain article.

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