One question that probably every instructor thinks about is.”How to transfer all the needed info to the players.” One rule of thumb we see is that experienced instructors actually try to tell less.Experienced instructors have the guts to let payers find things out themselves. But they also know that there are essential facts that people just need to know. So how do I explain the game to participants? I will list different intro tips for team building games for briefing and explain my view on every one of those.
1. Separate presentation explaining the scavenger hunt
Sometimes there is an urge to go and explain everything in one go on a big screen. Especially if the room and projectors are readily available. The claim for that is that everybody is in the one room and you have everybody’s attention anyway. So why not explain everything right there?
I personally feel strongly against it. Here are my reasons why:
a) people are in the room, but what they really want is to get out. So if you do it, keep your story short.
b) at least half of your communication will be wasted as people will not be able to grasp what the hell are you talking about as they can not test stuff out
c) participants won’t be able to remember the details you give them and will lose the big picture at the same time
d) you talking is like presentations continuing, not something new and fun starting
Not to mention that you need to do extra work to prepare and rehearse the presentation. Is it really worth it?
In case you absolutely have to do it, keep the presentation very short. Like two minutes short. Just the main goal of the game and maybe safety. Absolutely no talking about how to use equipment etc. Have faith in the participants!
2. Attaching your iPad to big screen and running a demo
This is another option. If you are running an iPad game you could run a demo. The main claim here is that participants will be thoroughly briefed and after seeing the demo they know how to use the device once they get one. The problem with this approach is that you will tend to go into „press this and then press that” mode. So it will be technical rather than igniting.
If you have to be on the stage, then having online demo is cool, but keep it in the background and focus on the big picture. The goal of the game, the winner and safety. Players will figure out how to use the device themselves.
3. Talking to every team one by one
Teams have the devices and you are explaining what they can do with it. Works really well, but takes a lot of resources (instructors). It is a good backup option if somebody did not quite get it, but do not rely on it as your main tool.
4. Greeting text within the game
At the start of the game players are presented with your custom greeting text. This is the place to mention all the most important aspects. Do not leave it empty when preparing the game, as this is the „self-help” for the team if they missed something. Do not make it overly long, but mention again the big picture there. Add your phone number just in case.
5. Players finding stuff out themselves
We are really trying to build the game interface so it does not get in the way. So player would understand it by just looking at it. There will always be things you need to clear up for participants, but we believe that the user interface should not be in the way.
6. Build the instructions into the game
This follows the rule – „give the information when it is needed”. So instead of trying to get everything through before the scavenger hunt give the information in chunks. What you can do is that you can inform players about timers, hints etc. with first questions. In your first question just say:” Look out some questions have timers, when a timer runs out your answer is considered wrong.” Now they are informed for the whole game and you do not have to tell about it in your brief. Next time they see red countdown timer they will know what it does.
Building intro into game itself takes more preparation but is worth it. With Loquiz you can create “intro questions” and tag them as such so you can use them in all your upcoming games.
To recap you have several “moments”to brief participants.
1. Pre-event info – you should probably add a teaser line to prepare participants.
2. All out presentation – focus on the BIG PICTURE
3. Live demo – just in background while you focus on few key rules.
4. Greeting texts within the game that explain the basic rules
5. One-on-one coaching if somebody does not get it.
6. Players finding out things on their own.
7. Instructions built into the questions.
8. Phone call or one-on-one if needed.
Out of those I would put my focus on 4, 6, and 7.
And as said the most experienced instructors actually talk the least about technicalities. They focus on the fun instead.