Lukas Šitkus
Mar 25, 2024

Understanding, Researching and Brainstorming the Idea of Gameup

Every idea, no matter how weird or wonderful, needs a bit of polishing before you jump in headfirst.

Hold your horses and take slow steps.

Research

One of the first crucial steps is seeing if others have explored similar territory. In simpler terms - do thorough research.

For Gameup, we kicked off with a Google search to find existing apps or past attempts at something similar.

We examined the Meetup app as a reference point. Our take was that it's somewhat general, more suited for typical events than board games. While it's popular in some countries, it hasn't gained much attention in Lithuania, where we've only seen a couple of game-related gatherings. Wow.

Diving deeper, we stumbled upon a Kickstarter project from about a year ago. It seemed almost like a twin of Gameup (or perhaps we're the doppelgängers), created by a duo from Australia with design skills but lacking programming expertise. They sought backers, but (lucky for us, hehehe), they fell short.

Following the Kickstarter trail, we found a Reddit discussion. It turns out that many similar ideas met their fate without much success.

Key takeaways from these findings:

After the research phase, we delved into a brainstorming session.

Brainstorm

We divided our audience into two groups: players and hosts. This was crucial to gain insights from both perspectives.

Armed with pen and paper, we dived into understanding what works currently and brainstorming innovative ideas to enhance game organisation, participation (let's face it, it could be waaaaay better), and ways to motivate people to use the app.

Injecting some League of Legends gameplay in between – a must for keeping the creative juices flowing. There's nothing quite like a bit of shouting on each other to boost team spirit.

One heavily brainstormed topic revolved around the gamification of the app. We explored methods to make the app engaging by incorporating elements such as achievements, rewards, and user feedback.

After piling up ideas, the next step involved voting and determining the ones with the most potential.

Evaluation

Our rating system revolved around three key criteria:

For each feature, we had a discussion, agreed on ratings. If an idea was both good and doable but not a money-maker, it received a solid 2 points.

This process aimed to provide a clear blueprint for the prototype. Skipping any of these features during the prototype phase would have led to more trial and error.

Once all features were rated, it became evident which ones deserved inclusion in the initial prototype. However, even ideas earning just 1 point might prove useful later on, though less likely for the initial prototype.

What’s Next

The foundation is done. Time to call up the construction crew and build a sketchy house for people to test and give us invaluable feedback.

In the next post of these series, we'll dive into creating the initial prototype. What it should have for user testing and where to focus.

Listened to:

Love what we are doing? Have any questions or ideas about this blog or how my life could be better? Tell me about it lukas@sitkus.com.

Thanks for reading. Peace.