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Sensuki's Suggestions #012: Non-Terrible Main HUD [Mockup]

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Why does everything in the hud has to be at the bottom of the screen?

Why can't we have something like BG2 hud, where everything was around the screen and optionally could be hidden?

We all have big monitors now, vertical+horizontal won't impede the view much.

 

My personal opinion on WHY its better to have all UI elements at the bottom is immersion. I really dislike UI's that basiclay force me to view through a picture frame. It creates another layer of distance between the player and the action. UI's that let you always see through, means no blocks that completly hide the game make the UI feel lighter.

 

Well, it might have been true for BG in the olden days. Now with widescreen mode, or in enhanced edition the hud is not as noticable because of higher resolutions. But I agree that unused space should not be wasted with solid bars. 

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Why does everything in the hud has to be at the bottom of the screen?

Why can't we have something like BG2 hud, where everything was around the screen and optionally could be hidden?

We all have big monitors now, vertical+horizontal won't impede the view much.

Because that's terrible design, if you don't use shortcuts.

 

Clear combat log to the left (upper left, lower left), and then you have large portraits with clear combat/status effects on those portraits. For each character you pick, there is a generous bar beneath the portraits, letting you pick your preferred action fast and easy. But instead of mini-map (no need for that, have the hub there).

Imo The action bar should be above the character portraits, else you choose a character then go down to the action bar and then go up again.

Edited by Prometheus
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Making use of the side of the screen does make sense on widescreen tbh. The Serpent in the Staglands has a pretty neat side only UI.

 

I also do like the BG2 UI (ESPECIALLY the 1PP version) but that's not going to be used here as we discovered 18 months ago.

Edited by Sensuki
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What do you guys think?

To me, there's an inherent flaw in putting an important menu at the center of the a rectangular border; while it is true that your primary vision is focused in a rough circle around the party, the field of visual information does not just sit in that circle but instead forms a series of concentric rings radiating away from the party.

 

In that sense, you're going to block something the player may want to recognize in the field of vision with a big, immovable HUD piece in the center of the screen than you are at the corners (obviously making the HUD a solid bar renders the problem moot as there is no chance of vision past a immobile solid HUD bar). But in a smaller, piecemeal HUD, I'd think the important menu pieces would be most desirous in the corner to have the least potential impact to the player's field of vision.

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Why does everything in the hud has to be at the bottom of the screen?

Why can't we have something like BG2 hud, where everything was around the screen and optionally could be hidden?

We all have big monitors now, vertical+horizontal won't impede the view much.

Because that's terrible design, if you don't use shortcuts.

 

Clear combat log to the left (upper left, lower left), and then you have large portraits with clear combat/status effects on those portraits. For each character you pick, there is a generous bar beneath the portraits, letting you pick your preferred action fast and easy. But instead of mini-map (no need for that, have the hub there).

Imo The action bar should be above the character portraits, else you choose a character then go down to the action bar and then go up again.

 

Great improvement! Wonder why Ubisoft missed that? It would save loads of movements, and it really makes sense (as long as the action bar is thin and the portraits big, of course).


*** "The words of someone who feels ever more the ent among saplings when playing CRPGs" ***

 

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Definitely an improvement. Not as aesthetically pleasing as the current one, but certainly more functional. I would also want to try swapping the portrait cluster and the combat log's position, but couldn't say which one I'd end up preferring without the option to try it.

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Pretty much, yep. The main point is that the combat log on the far right is not good.

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One thing I do not like is the red filling the character portrait for stamina. Depending on the portrait colors this is sometimes hard to see. Could we have the option for a stamina bar beside the health bar? 

Edited by Billy O

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I don't know if this has already been brought up but another problem with the UI is that because selecting skills is bound to the selection of a portrait, it forces any summon/charmed/dominated npc to be added to the portraits list to be able to use any of their skills causing all sort of problems with the UI. Unless they're all supposed to simply auto-attack.

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I don't know if this has already been brought up but another problem with the UI is that because selecting skills is bound to the selection of a portrait, it forces any summon/charmed/dominated npc to be added to the portraits list to be able to use any of their skills causing all sort of problems with the UI. Unless they're all supposed to simply auto-attack.

Good catch. That is a big problem.

 

I also mentioned this in other videos and said that the selection of a portrait and character in the game should be de coupled. In the IE games this is how it was. When you moused over a portrait a tooltip appeared over the portraits with the character's HP and Name. When you moused over a character in the level, the tooltip appeared over the character.

 

In PE if you mouse over a portrait, the tooltip appears over the character, always.

Edited by Sensuki
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Oneiromancer: Have some space beside the large portraits of your party, and then add smaller portraits that join in the row, and work like the others. In M&M X, you even see two follower portraits on each side (something like that - easy, peasy - technically, they were not active in combat in that game, but you get the point).

If we ditch most of that hud, we can have a row of six portraits, and perhaps 5-6 summons as well, all in a row, and if the combat log is in the upper corner like in M&M X, you can have 14-17 or something like that.

Edited by IndiraLightfoot

*** "The words of someone who feels ever more the ent among saplings when playing CRPGs" ***

 

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Just don't listen to immersion-crowd. For many of us solid UIs add immersion, not substract from it. We're used to it since old games and I personally don't need any help in make-believe that I'm actually not playing the game. I'm perfectly fine knowing I'm playing the game and having action being separated from UI. If anything it adds a lot of clarity to what's happening since framed view means no enemies hiding behind UI windows and all that.

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Just don't listen to immersion-crowd. For many of us solid UIs add immersion, not substract from it. We're used to it since old games and I personally don't need any help in make-believe that I'm actually not playing the game. I'm perfectly fine knowing I'm playing the game and having action being separated from UI. If anything it adds a lot of clarity to what's happening since framed view means no enemies hiding behind UI windows and all that.

Because its impossible to hide behind the frame right?

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^ That. Sensuki's UI is better than the current one as far as functionality goes, but both are bad as far as aesthetics go. I would like that  Sensuki's placement is used in the solid Ui. The minimalist one can look whatever, zero interest in that. You can even let them rearange the features completely.

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A nice addition would be adding a option to make the skills of your selected character appear at your mouse cursor. So you select a hero, hold down the hotkey and activate the ability. Would be way faster than constantly moving to a border of the screen.

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tried to edit my post before but the page wouldn't load and then I had to run to class.

Was going to clarify my position re: form v function:

Most people will have the screen centered around the action so having the skill buttons on the far out left tribles the mouse movement required (select hero, select skill, select target) compared to having them in the centre on your average wide screen monitor.

^Pretty much this - Sensuki's idea seems the most practical in terms of ergonomics.

My preference for portraits on right and log in the middle is probably from BG/IWD influence but I find it more aesthetically pleasing.

I'd be fine with either one over the current setup.

[Fallout UI]

 

Guess where the log is situated in this gem of a game! :p

Yep - log on left, combat action buttons in the middle and other stuff on the right.

Nice and useful like in Sensuki's setup (of course the screen was smaller then so looking to left/right at bottom wasn't a big thing - on widescreens it's a greater distance to get to the corners)

 

In PE if you mouse over a portrait, the tooltip appears over the character, always.

?? That's an odd decision - I'd expect info to be where I'm pointing - hope they change that.

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While I do like yours better than the original, it is still not addressing the most obvious problem and that's having the a horizontal HUD in a world filled with 16:9 monitors. Why does the HUD have to occlude a large portion of the already limited vertical space when it would perfectly fit to the left of the screen while leaving plenty of room for the actual game content?

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Let it be paved or unseen
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While I do like yours better than the original, it is still not addressing the most obvious problem and that's having the a horizontal HUD in a world filled with 16:9 monitors. Why does the HUD have to occlude a large portion of the already limited vertical space when it would perfectly fit to the left of the screen while leaving plenty of room for the actual game content?

Imo having the UI at one of the sides would result in horrible long and anoying mouse movement between your heros and the skill bar.

Edited by Mayama

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I would prefer a BG2 style UI myself but Obsidian has been adamant that bottom only UI is how they are doing the UI full stop. That is why I have only ever made designs (in the Art Update 54 thread and beyond) to try and fit within their design constraints.

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While I do like yours better than the original, it is still not addressing the most obvious problem and that's having the a horizontal HUD in a world filled with 16:9 monitors. Why does the HUD have to occlude a large portion of the already limited vertical space when it would perfectly fit to the left of the screen while leaving plenty of room for the actual game content?

 

I find it much easier to "emotionally" relate to the characters as a group/party if their portraits are shown next to each other in a horizontal bar.

 

When they're shown vertically on the side, the portraits feel so... disconnected, and impersonal.

 

At least that's how I subjectively felt when playing BG2 shortly after IWD2.

 

Maybe my brain is just weird that way, dunno.

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Obsidian has been adamant that bottom only UI is how they are doing the UI full stop.

 

Great. Maybe I should get an old 4:3 monitor somewhere to go with this game then...


There is a road that I must travel
Let it be paved or unseen
May I be hindered by a thousand stones
Still onward I'd crawl down on my knees.

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Do not make me go into this again Sensuki.  This conversation has been had to death and you know it.  This is the third time you have made this same post, move on.

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Do not make me go into this again Sensuki.  This conversation has been had to death and you know it.  This is the third time you have made this same post, move on.

 

Do not make him go in to it Sensuki, for the love of god don't, you won't like it when goes in to it! Get of it Karkarov, there is obviously room to discuss this and the points he makes are valid.

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Do not make me go into this again Sensuki.  This conversation has been had to death and you know it.  This is the third time you have made this same post, move on.

 

Do not make him go in to it Sensuki, for the love of god don't, you won't like it when goes in to it! Get of it Karkarov, there is obviously room to discuss this and the points he makes are valid.

 

Only they aren't and he has already done it in two different threads both of which got actual dev responses explaining their reasons that he refused to listen to.

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