Bethesda Portal Mobile & Console App Design

Client: Bethesda Softworks | Designers: Kavita Amin, Jeffery Fulton, Drew Gayheart |  Role: Researcher | Timeline: 9 Days | Platform: Console, Mobile | Tools: Sketch, Invision, Google forms, Trello, Pen, Paper
What’s going on here
Bethesda Softworks wants its community gamers to come together and engage each other from their console or their phone.
Here’s the plan
Since most of Bethesda’s games are role playing games, the goal was to take a more incentivized approach, Bethesda Portal gives gamers the opportunity to collect exclusive in-game content, ranging from weapons to mods, by completing real life missions via their mobile app from which they can then redeem on the console app. Some missions would require multiple people in order to complete thus putting gamers face to face with one another.
understanding bethesda
In the initial stages, I performed a business analysis in order to make sure that we were making a product that not only delivered to users, but aligned with the values of the company itself.
Founded in 1986, Bethesda Softworks division, has a long history of success as a developer and publisher of award-winning video games including Doom, Elder Scrolls and Fallout. In November, 2015, Bethesda’s Fallout 4 sold 12 million copies, generating over $750 million in it’s 24 hours of launch, beating out Call of Duty MW3’s $550 million in 72 hours of launch. Additionally, Fallout Shelter, Bethesda’s companion app for the console game, became the no.1 app in iTunes. 
The majority of Bethesda's games are role playing games which means rather limited online multiplayer for most gamers, so making sure we attracted single players to the apps was going to be a challenge. 
Early Concept Iterations
In the early stages, our first idea was to create a social media platform for Bethesda that could be would be native to console and phone and would allow gamers to share, chat and stream with other users. However the feedback we received from users was rather negative. There wasn't any incentive in using these apps and there were third party apps that already accomplished these tasks such as Twitch, and Bethesda Forums.
Whiteboard exercise trying to nail down what our team wanted to accomplish
round two concept Iterations
Responding to the negative feedback, our team quickly backtracked in order to solve the problem at hand. We needed to incentivize the apps. Make it immersive, so our team looked at games such as pokemon GO, NBA 2k17, and Zombies, Run. 
So in order to tie the mobile and console apps together, we decided to create real life missions for each Bethesda game that would allow gamers to collect exclusive items through the mobile application by performing real world tasks such as traveling a certain distance or checking in at certain sponsored locations which would then be connected to the console app and from there, users would be able to sync their exclusive items in to their Bethesda game.
Building out user personas
The next step was building out the personas. Out of the 12+ people interviewed, together, we were able to build out a persona named Mario that would be an ideal user for Bethesda Portal.
Bethesda Portal native console app home screen showing mobile rewards being synched to game.

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