1. Part I: Brief Summary This application is a task manager suited for gamers. It will provide users withuseful tools to help them stay organized. The main goal of this program is to rewardusers with in-game items for their favorite games, simple for staying organized. Therewill be multiple methods of ensuring the users do not cheat. This application wasinspired by other task management applications such as epic win and task XP. Ouridea is unique in that users will be able to not only organize their tasks in a simple way,but will be rewarded for completing tasks by being benefited in an actual video game.Instead of receiving items that don’t have any real value, our application integrates withother video games that many people already play and it adds to their experience inthose games as opposed to trying to make them interested in a game that doesn’t haveany persistence value to the items in it and has no value to the user after they completetheir tasks.Part II: Competitive Analysis and Inspirations Sense of Achievement
2. This inspiration board is about achievement. Video games in all aspects haveto give the user some sort of feedback, weather it be by earning a new item or gettingan achievement notice like these to keep them interested in the game. We wanted tomake this app to show our users what they have achieved in a video game by doing atask they had to handle in real life. For example, Xbox 360 keeps track of achievementpoints by notifying the user right away and adding up the total achievement point.The User is able to access their total achievments points at any time. This propertyreally inspired us. An example of this would be if Ben, a 20 year old male who is verydisorganized with his schedule forgets due dates of assignments or forgets that he evenhas assignments. He is a big video gamer and spends most of his time playing Worldof Warcraft on his desktop. He doesn’t get a lot of things done because it’s as if he isglued to his computer chair. With our app, allowing users to unlock items for their gameof preference, we plan to show our audience (Gamers ages 14 and up) that doing tasksand staying organized in your real life can actually benefit them in the game world aswell. This app will let the user earn coins for each task that he completes on his taskmanager. When he/she has enough coins, they can buy an item for the game that he/she is playing. We were inspired by the World of Warcraft achievement panel. We like howwhen you accomplish something in WoW, you get a pop-up notification saying whatyou earned and how many points you received. From this, we thought up to havea notification feature where you can go into settings and turn it on/off. This will tellyou how many coins you earned for completing a task. The top right picture showswhat new items you have unlocked. For our app, we would have the notifications tellyou what new items you can buy when you have enough coins to purchase the nextexpensive item on the list. Other Task Managing Apps
3. These are other task managing apps that can help you stay organized but don’t reallygive you the feeling of actually earning something for what you have just completed. Ifyou have a planner, all you would do is write down your tasks. That seems a little boringbut it could be effective for some. Epic WIn and Task Xp are 2 apps that inspired us.We have found ways in which we can take what was given to us and make an app thatwould be similar but better. Task Xp and Epic Win both give experience to your avatarfor completing tasks where in our app, “Life Xp”, gives you coins. In the other apps, youwill feel rewarded by the experience but that doesn’t really do anything for you where inour app you can buy and unlock items for the game that you play. Audience- The audience we plan to target is anyone 14 and up, who play videogames, and own a tablet or smart phone. This is a very broad audience range becausethere are users of all ages who play video games. This app is made for games whohave persistence meaning a character who develops over the game by added itemsand features. This app would be great for games such as World of Warcraft. This is oneof the most popular games on the market and it is rated for teenagers. An example of a user scenario would be Johnny, who is a big World of Warcraftfan and player. He has an iPhone and spends most of his time playing WoW instead ofdoing work. He like the feeling of achieving all he can get in a game, ending up in himnot being able to get tasks done. Johnny has found out about our app through one ofhis other gaming friends. He was told that you can get exotic skins for your armor plusother miscellaneous items in exchange for getting tasks completed. When he tried it out,he was excited to see his avatar in WoW have an exciting new look to it, not to mentionhe was happy to actually get his tasks done and he now feels organized and feels thathe has achieved a new goal. Other Genres
4. Understanding the Marketplace- We understand that one game is not for all.For us to reach our audience, we have to appeal our app in many perspectives. Wewill have a general layout of the app in which game companies can buy into our idea,customize the background and the items in which can be unlocked. This will open upthe app to a wide variety of gamers that would want to use this. According to research,
5. 3 out of 5 people play video games and there are about 449 million Smartphone usersin 2011. With so many people, there will be various different types of of game genresthat people like. This being said, we will include the most played games. There will alsobe a forum where users will be able to go to and post ideas of what games we shouldadd to the app.Part III: Overview of the application The initial idea for the project was an application that utilized our real worldactions by combining efficiency and role-playing aspects to provide the user with animmersive video game experience while helping them manage their every-day life. Thiswould be a game that was more than just a video game, but one that supplies the userwith a rich virtual and real experience. The user would control an avatar that progresses through a single-player andmulti-player experience, reminiscent of popular MMOs such as WoW, that will allowthe player to develop their own personal character. The difference is that the user’scharacter’s stats and attributes would be based on the user’s real-life actions. By usinga multitude of plugins, our program would be able to reward the user and their avatarwith appropriate stats and rewards. For example, if the user spent 2 hours in the gym,the downloaded Foursquare GPS plug-in would reward them with strength points basedon the amount of time they spend in the gym. Eventually our idea changed and grew. Instead of creating our own gamesand linking them to the program, we decided to link already existing games. Now allthe bonuses players gain using the program can be applied to their World of Warcraftcharacter, or a Modern Warfare account. Our plan is to extend this to virtually any andevery game company that is willing to partner with us. We also simplified the reward scheme. Since this would impact actual games,we decided to only permit bonuses that provide vanity effects and nothing more. Thismeant no stat upgrades. Just clothing and apparel that makes the player’s characterlook different. Each task will now reward the player with tokens based on its difficulty andlength. The plugins will still exist. The app will still utilize a program like foursquare toensure the player is studying or exercising as they promised. The tokens can be spentto buy the previously mentioned vanity items. This is overall a unique concept. Epic-win provides a similar task managementsystem, but it ends at the gaining of attributes. There is nothing to apply them to. Thisapplication allows the user to put what they gain to their game avatar. Epic-win alsoneglects to provide the user with self control. One simple task can give the user 100exp or 1000. Our application will designate proper rewards to the appropriate activities,which will be monitored by plugins. These plugins will be based on popular apps suchas foursquare to improve the quality of the task manager.There are many additional ideas we can implement. ● Scanning items and bar codes to earn tokens ○ Eating healthy plays a role in life-management. Certain food items, such
6. as V8 drinks or Yoplait yogurt can be scanned to reward the player witha menial amount of tokens. Soda on the other hand, would provide noreward.
7. ● Buying game-sponsored toys and posing a virtual-world equivalent of them (webkins) ○ Webkins are a big industry. People enjoy owning physical items of virtual media. A player could buy a doll of a WoW critter, and then input a code that would come with the critter to be rewarded with tokens or an exclusive item. ● Fight other people’s avatars ● Be rewarded bonus points for things like studying in a library, buying healthy foods, etc. ● Premium content, such as temporary stat boosts that can be bought via an in- game shop ● Real life sponsorships and advertisements can lead to additional profit ● GPS tracks position, pedometer tracks mileage, camera scans itemsPart IV: Design Rationale ● Principles (From IBM’s list of design principles) ○ Keep it Simple: Navigation; The interface itself is very simple and easy to navigate. It is never hard for the user to navigate through the basic user Interface. ○ Bring objects to life through good visual design: We accomplish this by having large buttons and easily readable text. ○ Optimize the design for the most frequent or important tasks: ○ Design your user interface so that it can be localized for other geographies without redesigning the interface: We have designed the application to be applicable with various game companies. Their will be a general layout that companies will follow in our interface. They layout will be the same but design will be outfitted for the game that is at play. ○ Provide the ability to redo and undo tasks: By providing visible “back” and “accept” buttons we can allow the users to proceed on their own whim, as well as fix previous mistakes. ○ Things that look the same should behave in the same way, and an action should always produce the same result: Long buttons containing arrows scroll through lists. Squares with rounded edges with text send the user to a new page. Even without text, the user will know what a button does simply by looking at the shape. ○ Easy to identify purpose of actions and identify how it affects you in the game: ● Design Choices ○ We want people to manage their time completing their tasks orderly ○ We want to make the design simple enough for the common user ○ We made the navigation simple so that the users won’t get lost ● Example support: Epic Win, a similar program utilizes similar features as Life XP. It uses interactive graphics and easy to read font. In essence, the two programs are very similar. The difference is that ours gives actual rewards and actually
8. monitors the user. Epic Win is fairly successful. Being private is what restricts its success. As seen through Epic Win, the audience requires simplicity. It goes hand in hand with the task management environment. Large, legible buttons and colorful graphics is what helps to drive Life XP.Part V: Research ReportSummary: Each person liked the overall concept of the application. When we asked eachperson how they would feel if they were rewarded in a game for “real life” tasks they allsupported and encouraged the idea. For example, one of the interviewees named DanAllen thought it was “awesome” and really likes the fact that it is different and unlikeanything he has seen before. Games that each person likes to play are Battlefield 3, Metal Gear solid, ModernWarfare, Madden and a variety of strategy, sports and shooting games. When it comesto getting tasks completed each person was different, but all said that they were insome way disorganized with their daily tasks. Some critiques of the game includedadding a back button to each page and adding a feature were the user can access anypage at anytime. Each person we interviewed was concerned about the cheating aspectof the game. We will need to figure out a way to keep track of someones tasks so theyactually complete them instead of just letting them lie about it and simply type it in to theapplication. Overall the application was well received.Materials:We made a paper prototype to conduct our research. We then wrote out questions on apiece of paper to ask the users.Changes: ● We found that users didn’t like to re-log into the app every time they wanted to work on their different characters in different games. They also did not like the fact that they could not gain anything in other games if they weren’t logged into those games. ○ To fix this we changed the way the they logged into the game and how they accessed each game. Now they log in with a universal account that they can use to access all of their games just by clicking a button. To allow them to gain items in each game we added a universal money system that is persistent throughout all the games. This allows them to spend the money they earn from completing tasks on any of they games they play. ● They didn’t like that they couldn’t easily access the other pages of the app at any given time and that they had to go back to the main menu each time. ○ We added a fast navigation bar to the bottom of each page that allows them to access any tab at any time quickly and easily.
10. Research Questions for Design of PrototypeUsers:Michael Shuester- 20 year old maleDan Allen- 19 year old maleMichael Richard- 20 year old maleQuestions asked: Michael ShuesterWhat games/genres do you like?Metal Gear Solid/ Shooters and Battlefield 3How do you normally manage your tasks?Normally he just remembers them.How do you go through out your day with your planned tasks?He has an intense schedule so he ends up forgetting a lot of assignments.How do you feel if you don’t complete a task?Feels bad because now his assignmentsare going to be late and he’s going to get a lower grade.Do you own an iPhone or any other smart phone?Yes, has a blackberryDo you download apps?YesHow would you feel to be rewarded in a game for the completion of a task youcompleted in real life?“That would be awesome! I feel that it would help me get up and do chores more oftenbecause I can earn new things for my games.”Was this prototype easy to navigate through?For our generation it is easy to navigate through.What are your thoughts about the app?The concept is unique and could help people fight video game addictions. Dan AllenWhat games/genres do you like?Shooters/sports gamesHow do you normally manage your tasks?Does not normally manage his tasks at allHow do you go through out your day with your planned tasks?He sometimes misses classes and assignments.How do you feel of you don’t complete a task?Depends on the task but usually they start to build up. It would be beneficial to be moreorganized.Do you own an iPhone or any other smart phone?Yes he owns a iPhoneDo you download apps?Yes
11. How would you feel to be rewarded in a game for the completion of a task youcompleted in real life?Never really thought about that but it would be really “cool” and he would enjoy that.Was this prototype easy to navigate through?Yes just needs the option to go to any page at the bottom of each page.What are your thoughts about the app?Likes it because it is unlike anything he has seen before. Michael RichardWhat games/genres do you like?Plays Battlefield 3 and Starcraft 2/Real strategy games and first person shootersHow do you normally manage your tasks?Uses a pen and a notepad to write down what he needs to do.How do you go through out your day with your planned tasks?Completes his task using what he has. It’s a simple system but it works for him.How do you feel if you don’t complete a task?Feels upset if it is a major task that he misses.Do you own an iPhone or any other smart phone?Does notDo you download apps?NopeHow would you feel to be rewarded in a game for the completion of a task youcompleted in real life?“I would love to be able to get some feedback for getting my tasks done quickly.”Was this prototype easy to navigate through?It was easy just reminds him of normal interfaces.What are your thoughts about the app?Would love to have this for Battlefield. I own the game but can’t make any progressbecause his computer is slow and can’t run the game yet. So he can still make progressin the game without playing it.Part VII: Challenges1) Finding a way to make the game fair so users cant cheat.2) We have to figure out how to assign how many tokens a user earns when completinga task.3) How many tasks can they complete each day?4) Getting stores/gyms have our bar code in possession so people with our app can useit.Part VIII: Works CitedBlizzard, World of Warcraft.Rexbox & SuperMono, Epic WinValve Corporation, Steam
12. "IBM Design: Design Principles Checklist." IBM - United States. Web. 08 Dec. 2011. <http://www.ibm.com/software/ucd/designconcepts/designbasics.html>."The Video Game Revolution: "Eight Myths About Video Games Debunked" by Henry Jenkins | PBS." PBS: Public Broadcasting Service. Web. 08 Dec. 2011. <http://www.pbs.org/kcts/videogamerevolution/impact/myths.html>."The Video Game Revolution: "Eight Myths About Video Games Debunked" by Henry Jenkins | PBS." PBS: Public Broadcasting Service. Web. 08 Dec. 2011. <http://www.pbs.org/kcts/ videogamerevolution/impact/myths.html>."63 Percent of US Population Now Plays Video Games, Says Report." Ars Technica. Web. 08 Dec. 2011. <http://arstechnica.com/gaming/news/2007/12/report-63-percent-of-us- population-now-pl ays-video-games.ars>.Sinclair, Brendan. "NPD: 63 Percent of US Are Gamers - News at GameSpot." Video Games, Video Game Reviews - GameSpot. Web. 08 Dec. 2011. <http://www.gamespot.com/ news/6183940.html>."Mobile Phones: How Many People Will Have Smartphones by the End of 2011?" Quora. Web. 08 Dec. 2011. <http://www.quora.com/Mobile-Phones/How-many-people-will-have- smartphones-by-the-end-of-2011>.