Games IHG

Games IHG

Client IHG is a global organization with a broad portfolio of hotel brands including InterContinental ® Hotels, Holiday Inn® Hotels, Holiday Inn Express®, Staybridge Suites® and Candlewood Suites®, Kimpton® Hotels, HUALUXE® Hotels and Resorts, Crowne Plaza ® hotels, Hotel Indigo®, EVEN hotels, with more than 5,000 hotels in nearly 100 countries.

Problem As a way to gave back to their guest IHG hotels regularly delivers games, puzzles and promotions aimed to their guest children in fun ways. They add digital options but they needed a friendly and less complex solution. As the previous one needed to many steps and wasn’t getting a lot of interest.

IHG were using an augmented reality app in their hotels to promote campaigns. However the user experience wasn’t ideal as they had to download a third party app to make it work. They wanted to improve and find a new way to approach their guest.

The Challenge Create a flexible and entertaining solution, aimed to children but open for everyone. Easy to access on any space of the hotels, like waiting in the lobby, restaurant, on the computers and in their own rooms.

My Role I was in charge of User Experience and advisor in the planning of the project as the digital design expert. I work together with the great team of V09, one of the biggest design agencies in the north of Mexico.

Goals
  • Friendly and inexpensive solution.
  • Way to hook and entertain guests.
  • Good UX and a fun visual design that encourages kids to play.

I was contacted by the design agency V09 to help them create a new digital solution for their client. I also been helping IHG for different design projects for the last 5 years. I know them very well, I’ve been in their offices many times and that familiarity from both sides helped to have a smooth process.

V09 had some ideas but they were not sure if they were possible, they wanted a personalized game but the budget didn’t allow them to consider developing a native app/game. I sit with them to brainstorm different ways to do it.

We came out with the solution to embed a personalized HTML5 game, I made a responsive website so any visitor can play in any device and have a similar feel of a native app, it was less expensive and easier to make changes and adapt to other languages.

Basic responsive mockups

Another advantage of building it in HTML5 is his flexibility. Campaigns change very often, four or five in a year. It would be very time consuming and expensive to rebuild the game every new image that they want to promote. But with technologies like HTML, CSS and Javascript we got a very straightforward workflow to change the look of the game. Replacing images in the assets/img folder and maybe tweak a couple of colors on the CSS and thats it. Fast and inexpensive.

Now, we a have a very simple game. We didn’t wanted to be used once so they would easily past the three levels and leave. Without seeing a reason to return and play again. It needed something else to hook the players so we added a leaderboard. A proven way to encourage competitiveness and have people playing more trying to be on the top.

Leaderboard screens

One of the challenges was to get kids to use it and if the average adult attention span in the web is around 6 sec. We needed a easy to understand site, with a clear and fast way to start playing.

Early in the planning we knew it would be in three languages (English, Spanish and Portuguese). The idea was to focus heavily on the UX and the site logic. We don’t want to change the layout or have problems with the space when translations in other languages are a lot longer or shorter. It should feel natural, see things when you already expected to see them. Had clear icons to save translations nightmares and make the base site easy to translate without worrying with inconsistencies in the design.

And of course, being for kids, it needed colors. This time the team from V09 was responsible of adding more life the site, dressing it with a colorful and funky design that gave a fun and welcoming look and feel.

Visual design of various screens