After having got through the first week, with all the introductions and early morning meetings, the second week felt a lot calmer. Dan and I were invited to two new meetings and got to spend more time testing the app.
We started the week off with the ‘Product Café’ meeting. Since it was our first time attending we mainly sat and listened, but it was really interesting to hear the views on the app from the team making it! All the members of the team spend time playing through the story, to find bugs, test the features, and also check the flow of the narrative. In this meeting everyone talks about their own experience with the app, and not just in their own areas of expertise, anyone from any team can make suggestions and flag issues. This is such a great way of seeing what parts of the app work and which parts need developing to enhance the experience and make it accessible for a range of ages. After all the testing Dan and I carried out this week, we’re excited to bring up and discuss our points in next week’s ‘Product Café’ meeting.
The second meeting I attended this week was the ‘Bug Triage’. In this meeting a representative from each of the teams comes to discuss the bugs within the app. The main bugs that require more than just a quick fix are handed out to the appropriate team to handle, and previous bugs are discussed to see the progress on them. One thing that resulted in a wide range of bugs, but I personally had never considered when thinking of mobile app development, is the different requirements for Android and iOS phones. As mentioned last week, I’m not the most technically advanced when it comes to app creation, but learning about how the team have created their own system, mixing Unity and Flutter, so that the app works for a wide range of phones was really eye-opening in seeing how hard the team have, and still are, working to make this app accessible to everyone.
When it came to testing, my initial assumption was that as interns we would test for bugs and check that the narrative of the story flowed smoothly, but so much more goes into testing than just this. The whole interface of an app inherently affects the user; the way things are ordered should guide the user through the app with the intention of making the story and mechanics easy to follow. Even with the app being released in a relatively short time, changes like this are still being made because of staff and testers suggestions, to make sure the users end up with the best possible version of the app on its release (and knowing I’ve had a hand in that is so cool!).
One of the things I’ve learnt over the two weeks is how discussion is such an important tool in testing. Experiences I had in the game that I hadn’t initially considered an area to critique, but still took a mental note of, were then emphasised when I heard my fellow intern Dan had similar thoughts about the topic. Being able to feed this and other points back to the design team is great in understanding the intentions of the app, how closely we follow this when testing, and in what ways we stray from this. Whilst Dan and I spent a lot of time in one area of the app, many members of the team found themselves spending very little time there. As the team are already familiar with the narrative of the story it’s good to get fresh eyes to look through it, to see how someone with no knowledge would navigate through the story, and also check that it all makes sense.
We interns have even more exciting meetings in the upcoming weeks. After returning from their time off, we’ll get the chance to sit down and talk with the members of the team who specialise in the areas we’re interested in. Since I’m doing my degree in animation, I’m particularly excited to meet one of the animators from Aardman, and see how they’ve contributed to the app!
With lots of exciting things coming up make sure to check in next week and learn more about my intern adventure.
· Bright Spark Apprentice Chloe