How to use VMware Odyssey for your next Event

As VMware Odyssey grows, we are continually learning better ways to run the program. Here are our latest tips, tricks, and best practices to have a VMware Odyssey ‘Hackathon’ at your next team meeting or partner event:

Prep Work:

Step 1:

Take an Odyssey Lab. Learn the key differences between a Hands-on Labs and VMware Odyssey Game labs. Your understanding of the program is key in the success of running the event and friendly competition.

Step 2:

 Understand what the requirements are to run Odyssey smoothly and successfully at your event. We put together a list below:

*If you will not provide thin clients, ensure there are enough computers available to run the games on.

The requirements above are categorized as optional and required items. The required lines will ensure you have the minimum necessities to successfully run Odyssey at a small local event. For medium-larger events that may span over multiple days with more attendees, we created a foundational list of “optional” items that will help drive awareness, buzz, and excitement. For example, adding emcees can help gather a crowd and get more customers to take a lab.

Step 3:
Fill out the information and details around your event here: http://web.hol.vmware.com/HOL-in-a-box/

Be sure to put a Salesforce Tracking ID and select all the Odyssey game labs you would like to run at your game night event.  Once you fill this form out, we will provide you with a landing page specific for your event, a unique Odyssey game code, and the custom leaderboard link.

Step 4: A few days before your event

Before your game night event, we recommend to take the specific Odyssey lab(s) that will be featured in the event and familiarize yourself with how to complete each task. It is also important to test the networking in the event room itself. This will ensure a smooth event experience and allows time to troubleshoot any issues before the event begins.

On the day of the actual event, we encourage a proctor or product expert present onsite that is familiar with how to complete the tasks.

Getting Started:

Once the prep work is down, lets create teams and design the game format based on the amount of time you have allotted.

Team Formation (optional step):

Start with all individuals form teams and create their team names. Help them along the way and try to keep each team small (we recommend no more than 6 participants per team). Once the teams have been finalized, write the team names and members down on the whiteboard. We noticed this can take a while, but it’s on our roadmap to automate.

If you decide that you do not want teams, then you can have all attendees play individually on their own laptops or thin clients.

Game Format:

Most Odyssey games run for 30 minutes, so we’d recommend you set aside 1 hour per game. Here’s an estimated timeline of events:

  • First 15 minutes: introduce VMware Odyssey, create user accounts, walk the users through the VMware Odyssey game lab interface, and make sure all players are ready.
    • *If you have a special Game Code, make sure people use that instead of the one within the lab manual.*
  • Next 30 minutes: Game Time – Choose one Odyssey lab at a time, and let the games begin.
    • We’d recommend starting with a Beginner level Odyssey lab to warm the players up, and then move into more Advanced topics if time permits.
  • Last 15 minutes: Once participants begin completing all the Odyssey lab tasks, they should walk around and help other players that are falling behind. VMware Odyssey is all about having fun and working together!

Pro Tips:

#1: If you find most individuals are stuck on a certain task, be sure to encourage them to use other resources (i.e. Google) to help solve the answer.

#2: If you don’t want your last name on the leaderboard, you can edit it out on our VMware Learning Platform Profile (lab portal) and refresh your browser. See image below:  

Let us know what you think! If you have any additional questions, suggestions, or comments on how to (better) run Odyssey at your events, please email us at: odyssey-support@vmware.com