We understood from the beginning that our target user would struggle with classic building instructions, due to their preferred type of play, attention span and building/creative aim.
We started by analysing and testing which were the key barriers in the classic building instruction (BIs) formats, for our users.
This influenced the design of the experience, interaction and had an impact on the product itself.
Our design is targeted to low building affinity kids, aged 6+, with a passion for arts&crafts.
DOTS is the new arts&crafts offering from LEGO and should inspire creativity and allow the kids to feel like designers and creators in their own right. With no right or wrong and an infinity of possibilities.
The UX/UI of the building instructions is key to bring this to life, both for our target users and for more experienced builders looking for a different experience with LEGO.
Intimidation by the amount of pages, no interest in opening a booklet, not feeling in charge of the process, having to search for the information, too many steps, lack of inspiration... were only but a few of the pain points we noticed for our users.
We also considered the role parents would have in the building experience and their level of involvement. How they could make or break the experience.
— As seen here, only the tail being built would have created confusion to our target user because of the lack of context.
— After a couple of steps, a lot of our low affinity target users would lose interest or get confused. It was key to us to try and reduce the building steps as much as possible, whilst still creating a pleasant and intuitive building experience.
During the process we created a series of different BI versions, with different layouts, thought starters, balance between inspiration and building. Creating a completely new experience whilst keeping the LEGO DNA.
Each step of the way, the material was tested with focus groups, of different sizes, to confirm the learnings and gain further insight.
From all the stages of research key insights were highlighted as can be seen below.
— Inspiration/thought starters where seen to be key as a way to empower the user to create their own pattern and decorate the builds or the plates. A question mark was sufficient to trigger the imagination.
— Using kids hands gave context for sizing and for the reality of the product. This gave the kids more confidence in the fact they could do it themselves
— Compartmentalising builds with coloured boxes aided information intake.
— Arrows further helped guide the eye to the next step, for our low affinity builders.
— A call to action to turn the poster over, leads to the inspiration page, thanks to the arrow and the colour tiles. Our goal was for kids to choose whether to start building or decorating first.
Below you can see an example of a final, recto-verso, inspiration poster for the Animal Picture Holders (SKU 41906).
— Using a 3 column grid to compartmentalise information and allow for the eye to easily focus on different information.
— Inspiration starter/call to action top left, as first thing eye looks at.
— Inspiration sections for different patterns: divided into animal faces (bottom left) and fur patterns (top right).
— Hero shot of the final model and how it can look. It's all about enjoying the process, but sometimes having a reminder of what you are aiming for is helpful.
For the January 2021 launch I designed a new product: the creative party kit (SKU 41926).
This set was aimed for a group of kids, during a craft afternoon or a birthday party event and/or as a party favour. The set focuses 90% on decoration.
We wanted to maintain the poster format we had tested, and knew worked so well, yet understood the layout wouldn't work for the type of play and quantity of kids (up to 8) who could play with it.
We divided the poster in 8 sections, which would have inspiration on one side and showcase the building on the other. Virtually creating 8 mini posters, one for each child. We kept play starters, calls to action and the hands to ensure the experience was consistent and equal for all.
We added a section, targeted both at parents and kids, showcasing possible party/crafternoon layouts, highlighting the contents and suggesting how to cut up the BI for the party/party favours.