I was having dinner with a good friend of mine the other night to celebrate his recent contract to work with one of, if not the largest gaming company, EA, out of their Vancouver offices. Having always been intrigued and amazed by his creative skillset (he draws graphic novels for fun) I encouraged him to talk a lot about the course he recently completed and what his work with EA is going to entail.
Skipping forward in the conversation to not bore you, what I really found interesting was his commentary about how the gaming world is really focused on infusing beauty and visual artistry into the game environments. Why are companies doing this? Well, from what he explains, they are trying to prove that gaming is another form of artistic expression – alongside literature, movies and music. And frankly, I have to agree. I’m not a gamer by any means, but I have been present while male friends of mine are playing and the quality of visuals and story lines impress even me.
My friend suggested that I look at the game Journey by Thatgamecompany as it is a perfect example of beauty and technology working together to provide consumers an experience of wonder and to build emotional connections with fellow players they meet within the game. In addition to the visual wonders, the music actually dynamically responds to what the player is doing. It’s no surprise to me that this game won several awards and was praised for the beautiful art and musical experience.
What can we learn from Thatgamecompany developers and their Journey product?
It’s all about the experience you give the consumer. From what I understand the game can be completed in two hours – seems short but because of the experience, consumers thoroughly enjoy playing the game and spreading the word about it. It’s no surprise that user experience design (UX) and user experience strategy are quickly becoming the primary services that clients are seeking from strategy firms such as ourselves.