GREAT interview from Virtual World News and Cartoon Network
VWN: Have you seen any other patterns in the way kids are using Mini Match?
MC: We’ve only been live since June, so we’re still trying to figure out that patterns. They play a lot–that is something we noticed about other virtual worlds. After you’ve got in there and are playing for a bit, the thing you really do is play games and accumulate points. That should be easier. The other thing is that the avatar should stay the same. There are some communities where the avatar changes in different environments.
And they love mysteries. They love these environmental games we’ve included where you bump into an item, and you’re turned into an alien, things like that. We’ve added mysteries and puzzles like that all over, and we’re adding more. It’s like Lost, except for I’ll promise you that you won’t have have to wait for six years to find out the answers.
The other thing we’ve tried to introduce is a mix of modern fashion and a little bit of the fantastical. If you feel like looking like a pirate or alien or whatever or just layering your clothes, that’s there.
In one of our focus groups we looked at how boys and girls asked differently. Then the moderator asked them to enter the game. All but one girl had entered. The moderator went to make sure everything was okay. She said, “oh yeah, yeah. I just need to change clothes before I play.”
This is CHALK FULL of excellent tidbits. It’s SO GREAT to hear CN talk with experience and understanding about their demographic.
I wish I could ramble, elaborate, and story tell more right now – because this is just filled to the brim with gems… but alas, time escapes me.
I HIGHLY HIGHLY suggest you head over to VWN to read a bit more about how a company (Cartoon Network) assesses their audience, provides, and plans… I’m very impressed.
There’s always a difference between what Beta sites look like and what they have planned… For me – someone who follows this market so closely, it’s great to know that Mini Match – as exists now – is just the beginning. I can’t wait to see how they use what they’ve assessed to the advantage of their audience, and what (if any) revolutionary things they bring up (which I’m sure they will, since the UI is already different than many sites).
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