Problem summary

The user wants to know how to use the different features of the application.


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A dedicated and authentic space where beginners can safely explore and learn core skills.

Spare users from facing horrible failure by introducing them to core interactions. Let users learn and explore core skills before they enter the full product experience. Provide modeless text assistance and basic goals so they can play the interface but also learn the interface as they play.

A Playthrough is something that you provide, before letting someone enter a full product experience, that introduces them to the core interactions and let’s them learn and explore those core skills. This pattern is known from games, where new players are encouraged to try out a starter level, where they get modeless text assistance and some basic goals, so that they can play the game, but also learn the game, as they play.

Let users learn through real tasks

By asking users to make their first move on the application, an application can get users engaged right off the bat. This is common in applications that depend on curation by the user to get the app working.

Continue the experience seamlessly into the full product

Carry any achievements earned in the Playthrough forward into the full, and normal, product experience. Make the transition from the Playthrough to the normal product experience as seamless as possible.

Provide a skip option

Some people just want to get into deep waters form the start. Always allow escaping a Playthrough by skipping it.

Don’t drag it out

Limit the playthrough to relevant core tasks and user test your way into finding out what length is comfortable for users. Some users might like longer playthroughs than others, so be sure to allow escaping the experience, but still letting users keep their achieved artifacts.


By allowing users to get out into the full product world early and safely, you can keep users from facing horrible failure if they hadn’t had an introduction.


Do you need to use this pattern in your project?

This  and others patterns are available and ready to use in this massive Wireframe Bundle. Suitable for a wide variety of projects: Website and landing pages, Ecommerce, Dashboard, Flowchart and iOS.

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