Animal Crossing: New Horizons is full of interesting design choices. In this article I explore why their designers may have chosen to have players unlock their own UI quality-of-life upgrades, and if the design pattern has value for other titles.
Heuristic Analyses – otherwise known as ‘expert analyses’ – are a powerful method in games user research. They’re also some of the most difficult to perform: no player data, no triangulation, and a game-wide remit.
At the 2018 gamesUR conference in San Fran I presented a talk in the Foundations track, based on a meta-analyses of expert reviews by junior researchers.
4C Conference in Prague hosted a user experience track. I shared advice on the means by which player data can be used throughout development.
Running playtest sessions is remarkably difficult. It’s easy to overlook simple practices that can ruin the feedback you collect. This article considers common mistakes, through the lens of the playtester’s five senses.
To get unbiased and honest feedback from invited members of the general public you’ll need to carefully consider their every sight, sound and smell during your playtests. So what does a great playtest smell like?
Published by Oxford University Press, the Games User Research book is the first major text on the modern commercial application of player data in game development. I contributed two chapters on playtest lab design and player research methods.
A long-read article on the voice of games user experience.
There were remarkably few talks or resources on the commercial realities of games user research: What does a typical day look like? What’s the workload to be expected?
At GamesUR SF 2017 I co-presented a talk on GamesUR foundations with Ubisoft Researcher Lanie Dixon to answer commonly-asked questions from the community.