Game Recommendation Widgets


In addition to working on N-Gage, Nokia’s premium gaming service, I also participated in designing other potential gaming-related services for Nokia. In this example, I worked with a co-worker to design a series of mobile phone widgets meant to recommend games from Nokia’s app store.

In particular, it highlights a common way of working that I follow: developing and applying frameworks that help inform my design decisions.


To begin, we discussed what type of information potential shoppers would look for when shopping for games. From this list of criteria, we generated a list of personas that might value one or two of the criteria. The next step was to brainstorm the types of widgets that might appeal to these personas.


We created a list of details that a particular game might have as metadata. This includes items like the game’s name, description, screenshots, and others, as seen on the right side of the whiteboard. We then assigned individual details back to the personas that we had generated earlier. At this point, we had a small list of personas and, for each of them, a list of information they would want to see about a particular game. After some initial whiteboard sketches, I went to my notebook to draw out some possible visualizations.


Sketching out some possibilities allowed us to identify redundancies in our personas, and as we continued to iterate on the visualizations, we narrowed our sketches down to four distinct versions.

When we were ready to digitize the drawings, I redrew them on large post-it notes (which we found to be perfectly-sized and conveniently portable). To parallelize our production, my visual designer colleague took my sketches and created these wireframes using our team’s design toolkit. We created four different versions targeted towards the personas we created earlier. These wireframes were then sent to the Ovi Store (Nokia's app store) team, who could then use them when creating targeted portals into the store on Nokia phones.