To increase Twitch's audience by designing a method for users to upload walkthrough videos, allowing gamers to share their tips and tricks with one another and make a profit. Twitch is a live game streaming service which allows gamers to stream and consume gaming video content.
The main features of our design included
We had 2 main challenges
Contextual inquiry while exploring the world of hardcore gamers.
Realising digital wireframe does not show as much information as paper prototypes.
Our research began with designing a survey and sending it out to as many people as possible.
For our competitor analysis, we researched competitors that hosted walkthrough videos and walkthrough content. The main competitors in these areas include Youtube, IGN and GameFAQ.
Youtube allows users to easily upload video content and includes simple annotation features. IGN and GameFAQ include extensive walkthroughs, guides, tips and tricks. These are wiki based and also include videos hosted on third-party sites such as Youtube.
We wanted to find out further details on what participants actually did when they got stuck in a game, what motivated current content creators and why others did not feel the need to create gaming content. We found interview participants by visiting Meltdown, a gaming bar and contacting respondents to our survey.
From our interviews, we identified that there is a need for both text and video walkthroughs. Generally it was dependent on the type of game and the type of gamer. For non-story based games, video walkthroughs were generally the ideal means of content consumption. For story based games, gamers usually prefer to read text walkthroughs as it is quicker to find where they are, and avoid spoilers. Many participants mentioned that they want to experience the game while playing rather than seeing it in a video. If they really can not figure out what to do from the text, using a video is their next resort. Casual gamers, however did not seem to care that much about spoilers and just wanted to know how to progress on with the game, so watching for them a video was the simplest solution.
For the recreational content creators, the reason for uploading content was mainly for sharing knowledge or interesting things they had created in the game. For professional content creators, the reason was mainly about helping build their community/followers and creating better content than their competitors. This results in more views and thus more money being made.
To start our design we needed personas to focus our design decisions around. Personas are fictional people who are represent a large group of people summarising their goals and needs. Below are our 2 main personas we focused on.
The design process started with holding a Design Studio. This is where I get developers, managers, marketing, customers and other stakeholders together to design a solution for a particular task. People are grouped into small teams. Each team gets 5 minutes to design a solution. Each person gets to talk about their design and get critique. This process is repeated to refine the ideas. This method lets me get a lot of ideas quickly. From this method, I gathered many ideas around how the walkthrough should be designed. Interesting ideas that came up were
A feature analysis was compiled to determine which features should be in our minimum viable product (MVP). With these features in mind, we developed some paper wireframes which we tested with users. From our tests, testers did not notice the timeline and markers we added. Comments were also not in the correct place, and testers noted that some information seemed duplicated. After a couple of iterations, we were ready to move to digital wireframes. The digital wireframes added additional detail to clarify certain aspects of the design. These again needed a few iterations to iron out clarifications, exact sizes and placements of interface components.
From our clickable digital prototype, we found a major issue which was not immediately obvious from our paper prototypes. With our paper prototypes, the entire interface was shown all at once. In the digital clickable prototype, users had to scroll to different parts of page. This affected the video and text walkthrough content being in sync. With our layout, the video took up most of the screen to be visible and text content would only be seen later on when scrolling down.
Our initial design to fix this problem was to let the video decrease in size and float to the top right as you scrolled down. However, when testing this, it was hard to convey or confirm this idea without building an elaborate prototype.View PRototype
This led to us making a major layout change by putting video and text content next to each other. With this came many other mockups and tests such as putting video on the right and text on the left. However, many testers felt that the video looked more “correct” on the left. Other changes we made included
For our creation process design, there were minimal changes made as this was not something many of our users were familiar with. The found the interface usable with minor things needing clarification and interface element position changes.
To demonstrate our concept in a more high fidelity mockup, you can find it in our presentation here. We designed an addition to the existing Twitch website which allows content creators to create elaborate walkthroughs. These walkthroughs make it easier for gamers to find specific areas in a game where they get stuck and can quickly get on and enjoy their game.
For future work, we would like to test various video sizes and layouts as a lot of casual gamers preferred larger video on the screen.
Many of our participants enjoyed being able to comment on a specific part of a walkthrough, but we could not figure out an simple way to do that in the time of this project. We would like to investigate this further.
From competitor analysis, most walkthrough content is wiki based which allows all gamers to contribute to the walkthrough. We would like to investigate whether this is a better approach to create content rich walkthroughs quickly however this would add complication to the existing monetisation model where creators are rewarded for the amount of views of the content.