I am an experienced games user researcher and educator. I teach people about usability testing, UX and user research for video games, and provide user research consultancy for small and medium games studios. Prior to this I was a senior user researcher for PlayStation and worked on many of their top European titles, including Horizon Zero Dawn, SingStar, the LittleBigPlanet series and the PlayStation VR lineup. I started the Games User Research mentoring scheme, which has linked over 150 students with more than fifty industry professionals from top games companies such as Sony, EA, Valve, Ubisoft and Microsoft. I recently released a book that summarises many of the lessons for people looking to run better playtests or start a career in games user research.
Top game development teams know that regular playtesting is the difference between a successful launch, and being forgotten at the bottom of the Steam charts. However many of the tools large game studios rely on are out of reach from indie and small game teams, due to being expensive or requiring specialist skills. This discourages small teams from doing playtesting, which has an impact on the quality of their games - issues are often not discovered until late, when it's too late to fix and fewer options are available to fix them In this talk, Steve will share how to run effective and affordable playtesting throughout game development, including: - How to find unbiased players to take part in playtests - How to find the right research method for your development questions - How to gather and analyse playtest data - How to prioritise and incorporate feedback from playtests into a development schedule You don’t need a full-time user research team, or lots of money, to build quality games. Save time and money by running usability playtests throughout development so that you can fix problems quickly and affordably!
By coming to Develop what you get is the opportunity to network like you can’t in any other situation. Everyone knows everyone and it’s such a wonderful community feel.
Building games is hard and it’s taxing physically, mentally and emotionally. So being around a community that understands that is great – there’s a comraderie here.
Develop is the must-attend event for the games industry in the UK. It’s where we all come together and learn from each other. It’s the best way into the industry and it’s the best place to learn from your colleagues.
There’s really something for everyone at Develop and the experience of being around like-minded people is really useful.
Develop always gets put in the diary. There are many reasons to be here, not just the talks, but the networking, people exchanging ideas about where the industry is right now and where it’s going to. It’s pretty essential to be here I think.
Ian Livingstone, CBE
If you really want to have a good interface with the British game developer community then this is the place to come.
One of the things I like about Develop is it brings people together from across Europe and the whole world. There is a very high level of professionals here, so you have company leaders having drinks with juniors from their community.
Dr Mata Haggis-Burridge
Develop is an excellent way of catching up with people – there’s a really nice community feel here.
Mike Bithell Games
There really is a huge mix of people at Develop - loads of peers that you can learn from and the perfect blend of every element of game development as well.
It’s really nice to see some of the younger people in our studio come to Develop, interact with other people in the dev community and make new contacts. I think it’s really important to learn from other people.
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