Welcome back to Harry Brenton, immersive user experience designer. Harry, what's your process when you do immersive UX design? Well, I think, everyone works in slightly different ways, but what I'd say is the really important thing is to get prototyping very quickly. So I do tend to do some sketches on paper first and kind of especially for initial talking about a brief for the client, but very quickly, you want to knock up some prototypes because it's only when you actually start getting into an immersive environment that you can start to explore the UX properly. That's what I'd say. Okay. So, you start on paper with sketches. Do you want to talk a little bit more about that and what what you do on paper? Yeah, it's going to depend a bit on the briefs. So if it's a personal project, I may just do some quick sketches and then move between the sketches and the computer quite quickly. If it's a more formal project with the script, then I might create a storyboard which is quite like a traditional storyboard in film or animation, where you block out the key shots and you can iterate the storyboard with the client. So you can sometimes print them out and laminate them and then you can move them around. That's especially important if there are non-linear bits of the story because then you can see the bits of which are going to be linear and the bits which are going to be non-linear. But then from the storyboard, then move into interactive prototype. When you're designing for the web, a sketch, a drawing is quite a good representation of a web page, and people often do paper prototypes as their first sort of design. Does that kind of work work in VR? It works to an extent, but there's a lot of stuff that's unique to VR, that's kind of indigenous to it, which doesn't translate onto paper. So you can indicate certain things, but one of the key things is timing. So I mentioned earlier that the user is in control of the timing because they are essentially the camera and that just doesn't come over on paper. But when you have an interactive prototype, I mean, there was a nice example of, there's a game called Time Machine and they spent months building this huge big monster that comes along at a dramatic moment and is really threatening. And when they put users in it, the users we're looking at a turtle, and they just didn't notice the monster there. So you really need to have prototypes with users just to see that kind of thing because otherwise, you're going to go down a kind of false path quite easily. And when you said prototype, what do you mean? Is that like a finished game? Is it completely playable? Oh, no. Normally, again, it's going to depend a lot on the project, but if there is a key mechanic. So, if you're doing a gestural interface, you want something which captures some of the final thing as in you're got to be making a movement, or you're going to be triggering something with a gesture, but it can be very rough initially. Also, if you don't have access to such a fast moving field, if you don't have access to the device that you're going to use, then maybe, you use a Kinect, but you know that you can swap out to another device in a few months when it comes out. But you want to try and get as close as possible to the basics of the interaction or the mechanic that you're planning to do. And, what's the role of users in your process? I mean, they're fundamentally important. And you just want to try out, you want to grab people as much as possible. It's also quite nice to get people that don't like VR or who are sensitive to it. So if you don't make them sick, then you know that you've raised the bar. There's also a kind of truism in UX design that trust what you see and not what they say. So what someone says about, what they thought may actually be quite different from when they were actually in it. And there were a lot of established tricks with UX design, such as videotaping people and then getting them to comment on the videotape rather than just getting them to kind of describe what they felt. And there's also something, again, quite difficult about using language to describe these kind of feelings. So having a video there can often be quite a nice reference for people. And I've heard you talked before about sort of testing early and testing cheaply. What does that mean, and why is it important? Well, especially on bigger commercial projects, and we're yet to see the kind of hundred million pound VR game. But a lot of people are thinking about it. And on those big projects, it gets very expensive the further you go. So the further the art assets are refined, the further down the road you are, the more expensive physically it is to change and iterate things. So again, this was from this YouTube video, the designers of Henry talked about this, that they left it too late to iterate when they had all the polished assets and everything. And it was very costly in terms of time and resources to go back and change some of the more fundamental interactions. So yeah, I mean, costs kind of does actually mean cost. So when you say that, do you mean you're sort of prototyping the interaction, but for the assets, you're just using placeholders, maybe from the Unity Asset Store? Yeah, placeholders or early versions of the final models. You want something which is approximately the same size, but yeah, placeholder is your friend basically. And get the interaction right before you finalize the details of the graphics and details. Get the interaction right, but also, identify things that really aren't working because there are some things you know that you'll be able to refine later, and that's okay. But if you've got some fundamental things about the scene or the experience, really try and test that out properly. Okay. So what would your advice be to a new VR developer who hasn't got experience in UX yet? What are your best sort of tips and tricks for them? I mean, I think it's such a new field that they're not actually that far behind a traditional UX designer, and if they are going to be doing some of the more traditional UX tasks, in terms of story boarding, that's quite well-documented. It wouldn't take them long to get up to speed. I think the knowledge they have as a VR developer and the fact that there's so much new stuff to learn and to a degree everyone's a researcher on VR, which is one of the exciting things about it. I wouldn't worry about it. I'd say, you have a lot to add as a VR designer, just drawing upon what you know already. Well, that's really encouraging for our learners. So I just like to say thanks. That's some really great advice and comments, and I'm sure our listeners have really enjoyed it. Pleasure.