Broken Thumbs Apps

Movie Quizzle 2 Game & Interaction Design

I designed the gameplay, interaction and content for an iOS trivia game which can be played solo or in competition with another player.

Project Description

While the first game would be about movies, the game framework needed to be flexible enough to accommodate any kind of question:multiple choice answer content as the intention was to launch a series of pop culture trivia games. We also felt the framework could serve as a study guide platform, should BTA decide to license the framework to an educational content provider.

With the above in mind, I designed the gameplay and interaction to be as flexible as possible while giving players a clear happy path. A player can select movie trivia by one or more genres—such as drama, comedy, or science fiction among others—or select all genres. We decided upon 10 questions as the optimal amount for each game round because allowing a player to quickly complete a game session is key in successful casual gaming. I designed a UI that would visually indicate the tally of correct/incorrect answers as the user plays through each round, which allows a player to abandon a game that is going poorly or encourages a player who is successful. Users are given immediate feedback of their successes during game play; they also have the option to review all questions and responses at the end of the game. I also designed in a path for players to report inaccurate content. During prototype testing, we discovered that users were evenly split between liking and disliking timed games so the ability to turn off the game timer was added in. This decision became especially useful later when we added in tournament play.

I created low fidelity wireframes for the art team, suggesting they use the movie, "Moulin Rouge" as a visual inspiration. I wanted the app's visual design to evoke the golden age of cinema, when the presentation of moving pictures were treated with the same grandeur as live action theatre, which I think the art team achieved beautifully. Additionally, I wrote the functional specs for engineering illustrated with low fidelity wireframes detailing interaction, wrote and maintained online help documentation which was presented in-app as an HTML file, and managed a team of writers in the production of content questions.

One ever present challenge in free-to-download games is building a revenue stream. We chose to bundle additional trivia content into genre-related groups, branded Q-packs, which can be added to the game post-download. This extends the total gameplay life of the app in much the same way additional content packs are used for Trivial Pursuit. Q-packs were purchased via in-app credits, which could be directly purchased from Apple's App Store or earned by watching curated advertiser content or winning tournament challenges.

To build retention, we designed in achievement levels and leaderboards integrated with Apple's Gamecenter. Achievements can also be shared via the player's social media accounts. I wrote all of the achievement level descriptions and determined the levels at which they would be earned.

After the v1 release in the Apple App Store, I analyzed user data to adjust the discoverability of some game features using Flurry tags integrated into all decision points of the game. A later version features a two-player game using a location aware check-in partner service that I integrated into game play, this features presents as a series of challenges to play trivia tournaments in which players can earn in-app credit as well as Foursquare-esqe bragging rights.

Movie Quizzle 2 is available in the Apple App Store.

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Project Details

Client: Broken Thumbs apps
Usage: Shipped product
Tools: Adobe Illustrator, BBEdit