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Captivate vs Storyline 360

Since I've been in the IDTE program, I've learned how to master a few programs. I believe that I've earned my Black-belt in Camtasia, I'm proficient in Vyond and I'm pretty good with Wix. But the two programs that have impacted me the most along with these are both Adobe Captivate and Articulate Storyline 360. In the spring I created projects in Captivate and I created a SAMR project using Articulate Storyline. In the summer I have created several projects using Storyline and a couple with Captivate and a combo of both. I know that if you google Captivate vs Storyline 360 that you'll find numerous reviews but I've decided to give you my take on both products.

Captivate: In the spring we started with Captivate 2017. I'm now using 2019 which has some new upgrades and differences. When I first started using Captivate I thought, wow, this is a lot of icons and buttons! This is a very robust system with a ton of features and you have to look around and make sure that you know what you're doing. We received more assistance when using this product through a step-by-step book and weekly courses with guidance. Once I began my project I began to grasp it better and get used to the whole system. As far as it's features and functionality, it has all of the interactivity set up that you can ask for. You can add anything to the canvas, with a detailed timeline at the bottom and slides on the left and properties for each item on the right. That's the basic layout for authoring programs these days. I like that it keeps track of the files that you use and don't use if you removed something. It's easy to preview and publish. To view the published file it's easy to view on your computer but you'll need to upload to SCORM or an LMS or something else. One of the standouts is its ability to use VR backgrounds and create a panoramic environment. Overall, it's a great tool and I believe that you can do about anything possible on this software.

Storyline 360: Storyline is part of the Articulate 360 suite, which carries several products like Rise which is web-based and easy to use but Storyline is the true creator of the series. When you first look at storyline, I just thought, well, this is just a glorified looking PowerPoint because the set was very similar except that you still have the timeline at the bottom and properties to the right. One thing that stood out to me was the layers and triggers are right there in front of you on the left-hand side. You have your slides on the left but you can organize them in various ways. It's very easy to use and get into quickly creating something and previewing and publishing. One of the standouts was that you can publish to their servers and receive a link even while using the trial version. This makes it easy to share with others and complete assignments.

Comparisons: Storyline wins the battle of ease of use and convenience as its easy to just jump in and create whatever you want very quickly with the triggers and layers, and if statements. You can also setup conditional actions in Captivate but it's a little harder to operate and find. However, Captivate wins the battle of features and capabilities, it might be hard to find somethings but Captivate has EVERYTHING. Captivate wins with its features such as screen recording for training, demo and simulation purposes. Its recorder is stronger and gives you more options, screen recording for Storyline was not that great and the timing is off. You have to tweak both recordings but you have to do more tweaking to Storyline's recording. VR, of course, gives Captivate another edge and it's nice that you can add VR slides to a regular project as well. Both PowerPoint converters are NOT so great so if you have a PowerPoint save it as an image or save each part as an image, do NOT copy/paste or you'll lose quality. Though Storyline doesn't have as many features and no VR, it DOES have it's own sharing servers which is huge because SCORM cloud is good but very limited. Articulate does a great job of hosting your projects which makes it fun because you can create something in Captivate and post it to Storyline just for sharing purposes. Overall, in closing, both products are awesome and they have their advantages. I love to use Storyline because it's so easy to get into and create something but if you want to create something in VR or need some more or some other features that Storyline is lacking then Captivate is for you. For my future, it probably helps to be efficient in both because who knows what school or company may prefer. Maybe one day I'll create the same thing in both software to truly compare. Happy Authoring!

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