Our fantastic and talented team has:
project manager/ game UX - Kevin.D
Product manager/ contents - Riya.C
UI/UX designer/ 2D artist - Johnson.S (me)
Character Designer - Annie.S
Developer / Game Designer - Daniel. H
Developer - MJ.F
Based on the demographic information provided by Creative Labs and further research by FitCraft Lab, our target audience is low-active millennial women, who are already on a mild fitness routine but needs more motivation to stick to a more consistent routine to build a fitness habits.
Current fitness apps fail to establish long term engagement with low-active millennial women users. The experience most apps provide is perceived to be intimidating, time-intensive, repetitive, gym-dependent and inconvenient. A vast number of audiences are looking for a more friendly, entertaining and less-intensive experience.
The project initiated the ideation without the specific audience information other than a potential fanbase of a celebrity. FitCraft Labs took a high-level review of the pain points that have not been successfully addressed by competitors and existing products. We performed over 20 qualitative interviews with fitness app users and took on trying out certain fitness apps ourselves. The top three categories of user pain points were transformed into potential developments which were presented to Creative Labs under the categories of trainer replacement, body positivity, and gamification. We had two concepts for each category.
Meet Jessica. Age 31. Small-business owner. Wife. Doggie mommy.Texan.
She exercises, sometimes. Jessica has been trying to be more “fit”and more physically active, for better appearance and health.However, she has not established any consistent routine. She lacks the motivation to make physical activity a habit in her life.
She sees Apps like NTC & 30-Day Fitness as High Intense + Unfriendly + Too Challenging + Not motivating or fun. So Jessica follows the trainer she likes on YouTube for her routines, that requires her to have a strong motivation to approach the content that lacks structure consistently. Then on a busy day with low internal motivation to exercise, Jessica’s routine falls apart.
1. Diversification: Our audience needs help to fight boredom from routine. They dislike repetitiveness and wants their workout routine to be more diversified to keep thing “fresh.”
2. Progression: Our solution needs to bring motivation for persistence and consistency for fitness activity, while constantly providing the challenge to the user to make progress.
3. Instant gratification: Our solution needs to add the “fun” element into a workout routine. The real physical change comes too slowly as a reward for most of our audiences.
4. Accessibility: Our solution needs to have a minimal barrier to action, requiring the least amount of motivation and effort or the user to initiate the workout.
ART & AESTHETICS
This shows a basic run through of the first interaction of the user with Journey, completing the introduction to the narrative, complete the assignment and follow the first-time instruction for room customization.
The colors we used are bright and colorful, which are more attractive and comfortable for millennial females. Through researches, the above colors are widely used in meditation and yoga, and they give a sense of relaxation and happiness. Moreover, black, white and grey makes excellent color contrast and layering as well as make everything more serious for millennial women.
Considering the app as a lightweight and half-idling game for millennial women, we decided togo with this kind of vector art style. Vector illustration is not only making everything more vivid and gamified, but also uniquely reshaping the app, so the whole app could stand out and differ from all other fitness apps in the market. By using our theme colors in buttons and progress bars, it unifies the overall style from the beginning to the end.
The upper images are the background of the assignment dialogues. The lower images are the animated environment that users will see after they arrive at the viewpoint, the photos they took will come from one of the moments in the environments.
For the intro tutorial, we designed a story that happens between the user and Naomi, from repeating the dead-end office jobs to finding a meaningful new job - adventure photographer.In addition, we keep the same style for the background illustration.
By using ease out effect for showing day and night transition within the office environment, the users will be able to have empathy of working at dead-end jobs in the office day and night.Once the story continues to the home screen, Naomi opens the computer and find a new job.Then the screen shifts to the first-person perspective, which also symbolizes the users themselves are controlling the mouse and really living into their virtual home.
Our main character, Naomi, is built based on the user persona, which is a millennium woman who is strong, independent and has a good habit of doing exercise. In order to form the character as a friend of the users, the design weakens the racial characteristics of the character, including skin colour, hair colour, eye colour, body shape, clothing and so on. Naomi is designed to be “supernormal” that she may exist around everyone.
In our demo version, we added motion graphic and animated elements into the first workout video. It is not only making the workout video more aligned with the overall app style but also giving visualized guidance for users to follow. In future development, all workout videos will be edited, and more animated vector elements will be added into the video in order to make the video more interesting to watch and follow.
Throughout the development, the team has on-going user testing to polish the user flow and intuitiveness of the designed features, narrative and user experience. The final prototype demonstrates our most polished version of UI design and user flow. Testing for gamification hooks and long-term engagement for habit building are difficult due to time constraint of the project, but the product concept has been presented to.
The progress was rapid rounds of simplification, the information displayed on the home screen are simplified, the access to room customization are brought forward to the main page to reduce the number of clicks and decision making necessary.
Users are given the digital prototype and were asked to:
1. Click through the tutorial pages, and explain the narrative in your own words
2. Complete the first assignment and explain the mission in your own words
3. Customize the room with your rewards
User test to verify the effectiveness of engagement and habit building is also a core part of our process. The most significant user test for engagement was a 5-day experience of our narrative overlaid on a daily fitness assignment.
The test took place before we have a finished digital prototype, so we communicated with users though message app, mimicking the experience of been given a daily challenge, have the clickable UI of the app and out workout video on an online platform so the link can be messages to our testers every morning.
An evaluation of Journey game mechanics shows the game overly emphasize on the positive drivers. So future game adjustments for a balanced experience should consider adjusting the current mechanics to add scarcity and unpredictability factors to increase the hook for engagement. The current bias for positive motivators is an expected result since the design guidelines emphasis on providing a positive player experience.