Halves Presentation

Week 7 Updates
  • halves presentation
  • wrapping prototype 2

Jump to around 1:09:40 for our presentation

This week, we had our Halves Presentation. Overall, it went really well and we got a ton of great feedback. It was an evocative week, as we were proud of all the work we had put into compartmentalizing, sharing, and communicating all of our learnings and progress into a 15 minute slide deck. Come Thursday [10/14], the day after Halves, we were exhausted so we took a day off to celebrate our Halves success, and regroup on Friday to discuss feedback, chart out our plan for the remainder of the semester, and do some final playtesting on our second prototype.

Our main goals for Halves were to share our discoveries and share how we are growing with each prototype. We are a discovery project, so we emphasized how our goal is to explore the crossroads between VR and music theory, and identify what works and what doesn’t, chart our findings, and hopefully teams in the future building products in this domain (or beyond), can use our work as a valuable reference point. 

Big Takeaways from Halves
  • What is our target audience learning from our prototypes?
  • How are the prototypes conveying musical curiosity?
  • More clarity on deliverable.
  • Build experiences beyond being a toy. 
  • More specificity with what the prototypes are testing.
Second Prototype Wrap

We ended the week by doing some playtesting with naïve guests who fit our target audience. See below our findings:

  • Too many steps to make a progression. Guests must first listen and hear the correct chord for the correct pipe, then pull back, then lock in, then wait, before their chord is actually registered into the pipe. They have to do this three more times, meaning that the focus is on locking in an individual chord rather than a chord progression. 
  • Having real-time hover feedback made it difficult to understand the relationship between particular chords. When moving from one chord to the next, the guest would hear all of the chords in between. This made it difficult for them to truly hear the relationship between two chords. 
  • The complex gameplay mechanic distracted from actually focusing on the music. 
  • Even though all chords were root triads, guests would confuse two chords who shared two notes. For instance, they assumed that a G Major was an E minor and that an F Major was an A minor. 
  • Because there was only one stage, meaning one progression, it was difficult for guests to understand and learn about atmosphere. We learned from one playtester that having a comparison stage helps them better understand. For instance our first progression/stage was happy and focused on major. Having a second progression/stage that was more sad and focused on minor, would have helped exhibit key differences between the two progressions.

Overall, we hypothesized that the prototype would be successful because it has strong harmony between interaction, environment, and music. The accordion was connected to the environment, and therefore so was the music. However, there were too many abstract parts that distracted from the focus of the experience – conveying how chord progressions can convey atmosphere. But, the prototype was extremely valuable because we have a better understanding of how our target demographic engages with chord progressions in VR, and how we need to simplify our mechanism in order to best illustrate key concepts. 

After a long but rewarding week, we are excited to continue growing, developing, and building in this space. Next week, we will begin working on our third prototype.

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