While developing in Storyline, you must always be conscious of how your user will react to what is presented on screen. In Part 1 and Part 2 of this series, I talked about how variables and attempt trackers are necessary when creating a captivating eLearning game. In this part of the series, I will be talking more toward the look and feel or aesthetic nature of your game development. As there are many things that we can talk about that have to do with the aesthetics of a game, I picked three main points that must be on your radar while creating a game that will keep the user engaged.
The biggest attention grabber (and holder) in any and every electronic game at any point in history has been its graphics, and you better believe it still rings true with Storyline games created for eLearning. Storyline has given its users the ability to create cool and sleek graphics that are easily customizable. For example, you can easily make states for the shapes within the tool that adds a depth to your projects and games. But sometimes the ability to edit and design within the tool isn’t cutting it for your “racecar” game. What works very well with Storyline is the ability to insert a picture (let’s say from Illustrator or Photoshop) and easily change the picture out whenever you want a new image but keep the same triggers and animations. It also works well when you want to create an image outside of Storyline and design and insert different states for that image; Storyline allows this kind of interactivity between softwares. Working and thinking outside the box are very good and essential ways when developing and designing a game in Storyline.
In the photo above, you can see what I was describing that can be done with Illustrator and put into Storyline as a very beautifully detailed image. This type of approach when it comes to developing a game is very pleasing to the eye and very entertaining to the user; thus allowing for an engaging eLearning game.
Sound effects and audio in gaming (including eLearning games) are a crucial part of the experience you want users to have. Great sound in your games can be the difference between a professionally crafted game and a mediocre project. The sound and audio should never be over the top or distract from the purpose of the game. Simple sound clicks and minor sounds are the best addition to games where learning is the main focus. You can have a background song looping for the duration of the game, but even that seems to detract from the user learning all that is there to learn. Simple click sounds and aesthetic touches can all be found in our library for those looking to amp up their games in a big way.
Imagine playing Spin the Wheel without a “spinning” wheel. Imagine playing Galaga with aliens that didn’t move. Every game has moving parts, no matter how big or small. The movement found in games (as well as in eLearning games) is what captivates its players. This is especially important in learning games. The purpose of a learning game is to effectively teach and quiz its players understanding of a topic. And without something that entertains the player, they will quickly zone out and click their way through the game learning little to nothing. I have found that even the small animated motions in a game keep users engaged and focused on the task at hand. Below are some motion paths that give the player the feeling that they are playing a game; while in the meantime learning the content that they are meant to learn.
Every game has its complications and struggles, whether it be on the back-end or whether it is a design flaw. Every developer struggles to fix them; but with these 3 tips and tricks, you will be a Storyline pro. You will know the basics of variables and attempt trackers all the way down to the simple design tweaks that can turn a mediocre project into a Storyline masterpiece. Let me know in the comments section below how these three steps have helped you and your development.