Since launching Food Buster three weeks ago, Jesica and I have gotten a lot of attention and we’ve received feedback from nutritionist, behaviorists, gamers, coders, researchers, college students, parents, and kids. We welcome the feedback because Food Buster is very much still a "beta' product. We’re nowhere near done building on to the fun concept that we’ve begun with.
I’d like to share some of the suggestions we’ve taken to heart and have already started thinking through. I’ve always found it easier to understand a concept by creating a mockup of what it might look like and “feel” like, so below are some mockup concepts of features we’re looking towards adding to Food Buster. They probably won’t look exactly like what is pictured, but you get the idea.
The concept of three levels seems to work conceptually, I think we’ll stick with that pattern of Level 1, 2, 3, then moving to the next round in Food Buster version 2. But what is confusing for a few is what the current levels represent. We picked foods from the USDA data set that, based on Jesica’s experience working with overweight kids, are common choices or options in. When you put foods on the scale in round one, we wanted kids to think about breakfast foods, and which types of breakfast foods have more calories than others. We’re not making a meal, the metaphor of the scale was put in to place to indicate we’re just measuring. Asking kids to put food on a plate is the right metaphor for building a meal (something we’re also considering for more advanced levels after the basics are learned). However, it might be confusing in that we are using the words “breakfast”, “lunch”, and “dinner”.
We’re considering a new 3-level flow, where Level 1 the user stacks calories, Level 2 they stack saturated fats, and Level 3 is added sugar. Here are some mockups on what that might look like:
The moments in between levels might be a great spot for a quick lesson or quiz. In between each level we are considering adding a quick screen on the topic of the lesson. For example, maybe right before playing the calorie level there is a quick intro to what exactly a calorie is. The next time you play the calorie level, maybe there’s a new calorie-relate mini lesson.
As you can see, we’re already hard at work to improve Food Buster. Keep those comments coming!
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