GDC 2014

GDC 2014 Session Scheduler

View, browse, and sort the ever-growing list of GDC sessions by pass type, track, summit, format, and day. With GDC Session Scheduler you can build your schedule in advance, and access it during the show via export or with the GDC mobile app, Please note that adding sessions to your schedule does not guarantee you a seat in that session. Sessions do fill up, so please arrive early to sessions that you would like to attend.

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Export Schedule:

Using User Research to Improve Game Narratives

Deborah Hendersen  |  User Researcher, Microsoft

Location: Room 3016, West Hall

Format: Session
Track: Game Narrative Summit
Vault Recording: Video

In interviews, gamers struggle to remember even their favorite game narratives (in contrast to other media), only remembering big moments or characters in isolation. In response, Microsoft Studios' user research group developed a narrative usability method to test story early in production, allowing for iteration driven by player experience. Narrative usability can identify twists that don't work and conclusions that are confusing, removing understanding blockers so that characters can shine. This allows for experimental testing, which builds character profiles based on players' experience, tracking changing perceptions of dynamic characters, and ensuring the designer's vision and a compelling experience.


Understand how gamers currently think about their favorite game narratives and what engages or limits their experience of game stories. Learn a suite of user research methods in order to iterate and improve upon narratives early in production, ensuring a compelling experience that fully conveys the designer's intended vision.