How do you rate Articulate Storyline?

Our first insights campaign for Storyline is compiling the experiences, thoughts opinions and insights of the very first L&D experts to trial Articulate’s new flagship rapid authoring tool.  

Read our first compilation of comments below. Give Storyline your personal rating if you’ve trialled already, or take the new software for a free test drive.

Released earlier this summer, Storyline, the new authoring tool from Articulate, has quickly become the most downloaded product in the Omniplex portfolio so far this year. Just hours after launch, requests to trial the new product were dominating Omniplex’’s web activity. Within only four days, more than 500 learning experts were already taking the new eLearning software for an extensive test-drive thanks to Omniplex’’s free Storyline trial.

Now, as the very first real users reach the end of their trial experience, Omniplex’’s Georgina Hamblin, compiles the thoughts and comments dominating opinion in Storyline’s early user base.

“People like Storyline for lots of different reasons,” everyone I speak to sees something different in it.” “When it comes to screen recording and software simulation, all the early trialists love it. They can’’t believe how powerful it is and are amazed at all the different modes you can use Storyline in: there’s the show mode, try mode, test mode and fine action tuning, all of which allow for so much more flexibility than most developers are traditionally used to.

What do the first users say makes Storyline so powerful?

“When we ask our early adopters to pinpoint the things that appeal to them in Storyline, they talk about the software’s flexibility: its ability to empower free-form thinking and creativity. Essentially, it seems like Storyline is well calibrated to support and realise ideas. Users say that they find the software so intuitive they quickly grow in confidence and want to experiment. The good news is that when they do they usually say that experimentation leads to productivity: ideas are realised rather than compromised.

At the heart of this flexibility is the way that Storyline uses what it calls “states”, “triggers” and “layers”. We’re finding that different types of users are attracted to particular aspects of Storyline’s functionality. People who are looking to create scenarios really love the story view, which allows you to branch a story out and offer up different conclusions depending on how the learner interacts with a course’s characters.

Storyline lets you to pick characters from a vast library and then define a character’s “state”, so you can change characters’ poses and expressions to suit any story. A state may be a person smiling or frowning, or it may be a button glowing or faded etc. A layer is like a sheet of paper with lots of transparencies over it, so you can make objects appear and disappear on the screen. Triggers make something happen, like a sound, a video or a layer appear.

It’s the ability to combine these three building blocks in countless different ways which lies at the heart of Storyline’s appeal as far as our early adopters are concerned.

How do first users describe themselves?

“Well Storyline is an authoring tool, but we’re finding that a lot of early adopters are Flash developers who are keen to move over to HTML5. When we speak to this part of the early user group they tell us that Storyline allows them to produce material much faster.

What do the first users compare Storyline with?

“So far, most people see Studio (Articulate’s established eLearning software) and Storyline as two complementary products. Some users say there are limitations with Studio and Storyline does things that they wanted to do in Studio but weren’’t able to do. But a lot of people are still going for Studio and I guess the reason for that is that Studio is the perfect authoring tool for people who like PowerPoint.

“If you want to have templates for all of your interactions, and you want to create something really quickly, Studio is the tool for the job. Storyline tends to appeal to users whenever projects require a really high level of creativity. The software gets them more engaged in the projects they undertake. They see opportunities to do new things and they are excited about starting learning projects from scratch, and building things they never used to think possible.

Storyline V’s Captivate

If it comes to a head to head comparison, all the really detailed conversations we’re having with users is about how Storyline stacks up against Adobe Captivate: the only other major authoring tool with HTML5 publishing capacity. The clincher amongst most of the early trialists is Storyline’s ability to handle software simulation screen recording.

A lot of trialists were using Studio and Captivate because they loved what both products did. Now that Storyline has come along, people who were using both have said: Great, I can buy Storyline and I’ll have one product that does everything. They like what Studio does, but they appreciate the richer functionality that comes with HTML5 publishing. Storyline doesn’’t have everything, but it has everything that most people are looking for.”

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Got your own story on Storyline?

If you’ve trialled the new Storyline already we want to hear from you. Rate Storyline, Articulate’s new authoring tool and tell us how it compares to other major players.