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RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Dead State - Design Update: GUI Design

Default Dead State - Design Update: GUI Design

April 25th, 2012, 07:48
The latest Dead State Design Update gives us the first look at the interface and some insight into the design:
This week, it’s time to show off a little more of what’s going on in our game these days. Let’s take a look at the GUI… FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER!

But first, let’s examine the process of how we got there. Our GUI starts with design. Design outlines all the key features of the GUI, what’s going in which GUI, how important each feature is, what our art theme is going to be, and the layout. We then take all of that and we mockup a concept of the GUI, which is a very rough idea of what design needs before art makes its final suggestions.

The layout of your main GUI is of critical importance. A good GUI isn’t going to save a bad game, but a bad GUI can cripple a good game. The GUI needs to do the following:

-Draw attention to important information.

-Be laid out in a sensible way to allow players to jump in (*it helps if it borrows from other games in the genre for familiarity).

-Allow access to important actions and sub-menus without relying exclusively on hotkeys.

-Not be too noisy or take up too much screen real estate.

-Relay tactically sensitive information in an immediate and logical way.

-Have a consistent theme. […]
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April 25th, 2012, 07:48
needs more ruggedness and texture, don't like the font
Also add transparency
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April 25th, 2012, 10:04
Hey designers, burying your good artwork underneath a solid color layer is a great idea!

It sucks the annoying life out your work, it makes it feel dull and therefore properly hardcore and, if you do it really well, you may even fool me into thinking that my monitor is broken, giving me the proper, manly rpg experience with none of that stupid casual, looking good, girly nonsense!

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April 25th, 2012, 10:15
wtf are you talking about holeraw? What solid color layer? I like the scrap paper + post-its look, fits the setting.
However I think the menu buttons to the right should be in the same style, and larger. And I am not a big fan of the portraits - they look slightly zombified themselves.
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April 25th, 2012, 10:19
Looks ok, but I think the screen real estate cost is a bit high.

I would consider less opacity as well.

Oh, and I don't like the portraits.
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April 25th, 2012, 10:30
Originally Posted by GhanBuriGhan View Post
wtf are you talking about holeraw? What solid color layer?
There's a very obvious ~15% yellow multiply. Not as bad as the AoD rust brown one but it's there.

Try it: Open one of the shots in Photoshop, do the simplest, crudest and laziest thing you can do to somewhat correct the color: image -> adjustments -> levels -> auto, and you will see how the image comes alive and the colors pop out.

Then create a new layer, fill it with a bright yellow (#ffff00), change its blend mode to 'multiply' and its opacity to 15% and compare the end result with the initial unedited image.

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April 25th, 2012, 10:31
Transparency wouldn't fit the design at all, i think. That would look terrible in this case. The only thing that could be tranparent would be the menu buttons on the right, and they are already very small.
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April 25th, 2012, 10:34
Looks great with really natural colors, some people in this thread are on drugs.
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April 25th, 2012, 10:39
Originally Posted by holeraw View Post
There's a very obvious ~15% yellow multiply. Not as bad as the AoD rust brown one but it's there.

Try it: Open one of the shots in Photoshop, do the simplest, crudest and laziest thing you can do to somewhat correct the color: image -> adjustments -> levels -> auto, and you will see how the image comes alive and the colors pop out.

Then create a new layer, fill it with a bright yellow (#ffff00), change its blend mode to 'multiply' and its opacity to 15% and compare the end result with the initial unedited image.
Ah, you meant the whole screen, not the GUI. Got it. I did what you described. It may be my eyes or my monitor, but to me the difference is pretty minimal. Without knowing a thing about the engine etc, I assume it's a result of the color of their global light source. Actually, I think it's already plenty colorful for a horror-themed game. Nothing that bothers me.
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April 25th, 2012, 10:44
Originally Posted by vurt View Post
Looks great with really natural colors, some people in this thread are on drugs.
Nah it's just the universal problem of you can't please everyone when making a game.

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April 25th, 2012, 10:45
holeraw,

That only makes everything look a lot more natural, makes them share a bit of the same color values because of the lightning. It would look off if everything had "perfect" color values completely unaffected by lightning, it wouldnt blend in well together.
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April 25th, 2012, 10:51
Originally Posted by GhanBuriGhan View Post
It may be my eyes or my monitor, but to me the difference is pretty minimal.
Well, I suppose I am more sensitive to such things than most (I certainly hope so since my job demands it), but I honestly do think that this is something that should be looked into in order for the end result to look properly professional.


By the way, that reminds me of an interesting part in William Burroughs' 'Junkie' that describes how being on drugs actually improves color perception.

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April 25th, 2012, 10:56
Originally Posted by holeraw View Post
By the way, that reminds me of an interesting part in William Burroughs' 'Junkie' that describes how being on drugs actually improves color perception.
Depends on the drug and quantity i would say Study reality and you will see that lightning have a big effect on color values, a white surface will have hues of blue in rainy weather, in sunny weather it will have hues of yellow, so everything shares a bit of the same color values if they're in the same lightning condition. Basic stuff.
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April 25th, 2012, 11:34
Could be true within context (though sunny weather does not give yellow hues). And don't forget that perception depends on the environment: you understand a color in comparison to its neighboring ones. Overuse of yellow is a typical 'rookie mistake', which is why it annoys me seeing it in such games.

Originally Posted by vurt View Post
It would look off if everything had "perfect" color values completely unaffected by lightning, it wouldnt blend in well together.
Well… many other games seem to be doing it well, including ones with less sophisticated looks. (Excluding all the horrible brown 'realistic' ones)

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April 25th, 2012, 12:20
Looks really good. They should kickstart it yesterday.

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April 25th, 2012, 12:59
Originally Posted by holeraw View Post
Could be true within context (though sunny weather does not give yellow hues).
Yes it does, study color temperatures (kelvin). This pic gives a hint maybe: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi…comparison.png notice the wall and the change in value.

And yes you understand values because of the neighbouring ones, so you just make sure values are neutral and let the lightning/filter or shader do its job, everyhing will match and the result looks natural. A typical newbie mistake is to use textures taken in a variety of different lightning conditions and not correcting their values, looks terrible.
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April 25th, 2012, 15:25
Don´t like the portraits, I think the noise meter doesn´t fit where it is and those icons in the lower right corner make the UI too scattered.
I´d say those lower right corner icons should be moved and incorporated into the central panel, the noise meter should have same width as the portraits and I´d prefer it to be moved under them. The portraits would be actually fine I think, if it wasn´t for the eyes.

When it comes to the character screen, somehow I find those papers around the borders distracting, making the screen feel unnecessarily chaotic. Getting rid of this element and using the gained space for some more info (like perk descriptions) might be preferable. The info panels already carry the theme, I don´t think the "flavour" papers are needed.

Don´t see any problems otherwise and I like the overall style.
edit: Except for the multicolour approach to stats/perks/tabs - it´s kinda kitschy and distracting, I think having it just monochrome would be better.
Even if nothing was changed I wouldn´t find it a "deal breaker", well, maybe except for those eyes .
Last edited by DeepO; April 25th, 2012 at 19:13.
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April 25th, 2012, 22:33
This is how the character screen would look in 4:3, that's the reason of the empty space in the widescreen version.

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images…rscreen43.jpg/

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April 25th, 2012, 22:46
Looks good. A little too clean, but otherwise I like it.
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April 25th, 2012, 23:30
I played the demo they did and did not particularly like it. The things they have shown since then are slowly changing my mind, though.
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