Another Storyline Game

May 07, 2012

I originally posted this for the Storyline beta group and now I want to share it with the new forum members.

I am a proponent or rapid prototyping, so I decided to see how easy it would be to do rapid prototyping using Storyline. Since I typically work with corporate executives, I wanted to replicate the attention span and patience level of this audience. So, I chose to work with three eight year olds. I asked them to design a game for me.

We sat down at the computer, they told me what they wanted and I put it in Storyline. After about an hour, we had a simple working game. After another three or four hours on my own cleaning up the graphics, tracking down some misplaced triggers, submitting a few bugs, figuring out workarounds, and adding tweaks for the iPad, the Tic Tac Match game is looking pretty good. There are still a few problems to deal with and some features I want to add, but I think it is ready to run past the forum group for comments.

My design team loved seeing their ideas become a “real app” in such a short time.

Bring on the Execs.

Tic Tac Match

24 Replies
saffir test

Holy Heck John U devil!

I've looked through your triggers and states and what not.

That game is about 5.12 light years past anything in the tutorials for SL on the website.

Yes, I know, it's just an extension of the simple concepts of triggers, etc. But I spent hours trying to do much simpler stuff than you have in the game and I nose plowed badly.

So my question is, how did you get to this level? Software programming past life? Or do you have some recommendations on training/books/blogs to get up to speed, especially with the tools used to map out the logic. I've been trying to find an easy storyboard or logic mapping tool, but I'm so new to this area that I'm stuck.

It's help a noob day... jump in, the water is lovely. What was your design process for creating TIC TAC?

John U

Thank you for the nice compliment.  Unfortunately, I am unable to recommend a specific publication or set of tools that would work for you.   
There many, many methodologies and white papers available...each claiming to be the definitive solution to the art of logic mapping and software design; however, there is no one size fits all.
I call it an art and I firmly believe that it is indeed 75% art.  The tools can help but the right tool must be flexible enough to accommodate each individual's unique thought process.
My approach to problems is based on the statement, "There are no complex problems, only complex solutions".  I first identify the core problem by distinguishing it from the symptoms.  Once you unerstand the problem, sub-divide it into logical, manageable components.  Then, ask the question "what are one or two simple solutions for each problem component?”  Select one...I find the first is usually the best.  Don't over think it!

I was serious about using three eight year olds to design the game.  Kids that age have great ideas and they package them into simple steps.  Storyline is built for applying that type of thinking.  I was able to quickly convert their thoughts into a working prototype and get a thumbs up or thumbs down.  Cobbling these pieces together produced a game (that mostly worked) in a hour. 


saffir test

I like it. I've been bamboozled by complex solutions. That's good advice there. I notice how you used that in your triggers for what displays when. There are a lot of triggers, but the logic behind them is very simple. I have to distill my 'problem' some more

Your game would work for something I'm doing (sports psychology site) with a few mods. What are your feelings about me using it for that? I can give credit or link or whatever, or not use it at all.

Thanks again for sharing your knowledge

Robin Leach

I noticed that you can click on images that have already been matched and then place a marker in the tic tac toe board.  Could you set the states to disabled after they are matched to prevent this from happening? I also noticed that you could click on a tic tac toe space that already has been selected and the game does not place anything so the person looses thier winning choice.  Maybe a disable state will fix this also.

John U

Good catch, Robin.

My "designers" also quickly informed me of these two bugs as well as a couple others.

Setting the objects to disabled state won't work.  As I recall, a variable condition check has to be added to most of the triggers attached to each of the match and tic tac toe objects.  While not terribly complicated, it takes time and since it was just an exercise in rapid prototyping during beta,  I have not been motivated to make the changes.

If Storyline had branching based on conditions of variables and states built into the triggers, these fixes would be a piece of cake. 

If and when I update the game, I will post it in this forum. 

Dennis Hall

Great work John:

Effectively, 2 games in one.

From a Pedigogical perspective, this game first exercises memory, then practices strategy while not overwhelming the users cognative senses.

In short... it's fun and easy to use

I look foward to seeing more and maybe someday even contributing.

BTW: The dropbox link displays a 404.

Best Regards,

Dennis Hall

John U


I'm not sure what caused your problem.  I have never run into a backward compatibility issue with Storyline.

I just tested this link (the same as the one above) and the Story file loaded fine.  I have the latest version of Storyline.  If you continue to experience the problem, I suggest you submit a support case.


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