HUD Feedback thread

Here’s the first “complete” mockup of the HUD for Battlescape:

With annotations:

We’re looking for feedback whether it’s on visual style ( I want to experiment with a helmet cylindrical deformation at the corners too ), coloring / theme, and of course functionalities.

Many of the HUD elements will be hidden unless necessary. For example in space we won’t display the planet altimeter, artificial horizon etc… Shields will only show up when damaged. Communications will only show up when somebody’s currently saying something. So the mockup is a “maximalist / full” representation, but your average game it should be less busy.

Are there elements missing that you think might be useful in a battle, or while navigating the solar system ?

Other screens are not yet finalized. We’ll most likely have one for the solar system map ( selecting a respawn point, viewing battles hotspots, assigning objectives ); another one for the player stats ( holding tab in other games like Battlefield: viewing kill/death ratios, ranks, who is winning etc… ); we’re also thinking of a selection wheel for weapons in game ( hold a key and the wheel opens ).


Hit “download” and it’ll bring it to a new tab full screen.

HUD looks pretty good, I have some thoughts that I’ll share later after class.

Will the artificial horizon line stay locked around the circle? I’m assuming it only reads your relative angle to the horizon even if you are facing into the ground?

The “0” mark on the pitch scale needs to be more prominent than the other values.

Will there be a marker showing total velocity vector along with forward/reverse arrow? ie. “^” or “v”

Also can we pretty please have an option for the OG centre reticle?? :smile_cat:

I can’t emphasise how much I like this one.


Its really good, so far I can’t think of a single thing thats missing/sucks.

Yup but those are 3D indicators that could potentially be off-screen. They’re not really concepted into this image. But yeah, in the prototype they’re already present, we’re not gonna remove them :slight_smile:

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According to this theory, right-handed people in the process of thinking, process information using a “linear sequential” method in which the idea needs to be fully thought out before you move on to the next thought.

Lefties process information using a “visual simultaneous” method in which several thoughts can be processed simultaneously.

read more about information processing by the brain left and right side, depending on the person looks to the left or to the right.


First impression: very nice! Doesn’t detract from what’s going on around you but looks like it would give the information you need.

I like the way a player ship is marked when targeted by a circular icon and a label (it looks nice and wouldn’t obscure the ship itself). What is the plan for non-targeted ships? I quite like the idea of not labelling those at all, and perhaps having a basic friend/foe indication if they are near the centre of the targeting reticle. That would keep the screen uncluttered in larger fights and allow you to focus on your target (which could of course be switched).

Also, really like the hinting about gameplay with the missions tab!

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Every little bit of it looks functional. Couldn’t ask for better. :slight_smile:
(Although I’m reasonably confident there are a number of people who would appreciate a large icon/font mode for easier viewing. Have you thought about scaling options?)

I guess if a low-acceleration/precision control mode for docking gets implemented it’ll end up in one of those device slots at the top right?

Oh! I’m assuming that any form of map(s) (Star/Planetary system, individual planets/moons/asteroids and what’s in orbit around them, etc.) will be brought up in a separate screen?

EDIT * It would be nice if there was some form of distinction between people on your team and people in your squadron in the team or global chat.

I really like the no-nonsense style. Didn’t notice at first the indicators for shield integrity. Are the square bracket ones for top/bottom sections?

I figured that ring showed all 6 sides of the ship. 4 sides of the ship, top, bottom, left, right, represented by the main four curves of the ring, with the square brackets at the top and bottom of the ring representing the remaining 2 of forward and back.

Looks really cool so far. The only comment I have at the moment is there’s an awful lot going on in that Squadron section that doesn’t seem to be fully explained by your annotation

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I’m happy to hear that only applicable portions of the display will be visible.

The one thing that jumps out at me most is that there’s a bunch of dead space on the display. Namely the spars making up the cockpit glass frame, plus the ship’s internal displays, buttons and such. I’m not talking about the stuff out of frame, but the stuff that’s visible in the standard forward view. The HUD information that isn’t location-specific such as targeting reticles, should be moved into that dead space. The sliders that indicate shield and energy levels could very naturally be placed over the spars. Ideally, such displays would literally be active in the cockpit interior, with a light bar worked into the geometry. Similarly, there are four lights which are prominent at the top of the cockpit controls. At the same time, there are four lights in the upper right corner of the HUD…

If you want 60s retro, do it. If you want futuristic HUD, do it. When simply thrown together, they clash, and you’ve gotta do work to bridge the gap.

I generally agree with this sentiment. Clutter is bad, so efforts to reduce it would be much appreciated. If there are going to be dozens of ships flying around, a circle on every ship is impractical.

Something that I would like to see is some sort of highlighting of specific types of targets. In ARMA 3 we can get thermal vision. That allows a player to look out on a battlefield and quickly identify targets - where they are not automatically classified for the player. It is up to the player to figure out if a soldier is a sniper, anti-tank or grenadier, and whether a vehicle is an MBT or APC. The thermal vision is just a way to spot potential threats.

Applied to a spaceship game, perhaps some sort of particle could be detected. Neutrons? Fairy dust. Whatever it is, it would be part and parcel of the technology of the day. So, in short, the sensor would be detecting technology. Look outside and you see glowing ships, surface power plants and such. Their size remains the size of the actual object, as opposed to getting a fixed-size circle on each object no matter its distance or size.

Ideally, you could literally go with thermal vision, which ties into the whole heat-as-stealth mechanism, but in ARMA 3 anyway, they’ve had to create thermal textures for each object. In fact, if you haven’t fired your rifle, it’s dark, and as you fire, it heats up and you can see the barrel glowing in thermal. That’s not within the scope of Battlescape, but simply showing some kind of enhanced lighting of any appropriate object would go a long way to letting players figure out the battlefield without having circles, lines and text all over the place.

Such a highlighting system would ideally be modal, so that I’m not always seeing every ship as a highlighted object, even when I’m just moving around near a busy port.

As for friend/foe, just make that highlighting color slightly different. It should make it easy to sort out what’s going on at a glance.


Okay, so here are my initial thoughts on the HUD.

First up, very cool, and could very easily put implemented as-is and be 100% functional. Most of my critiques are admitting subjective, dealing only with relatively minor issues. For that reason, this might come off as really nit-picky, but that’s only because the HUD as it stands right now is so good. :wink:

1) Shield Indicators

I have two thoughts on this.

I’m slightly confused on the exact means by which the indicators indicate, but I am opposed to the fading in strength with decreasing shield values. I get that it will fade out when shields are full, but is the plan to let it fade in strength with falling shield integrity?

Regardless, I’m opposed to this method, as well as color shifts. The reason being, the indicators are relative, eg “How bright is that line?”, How orange is that line?", etc. Granted, with experience this will become a non-issue, however I’m not a fan. Becoming good at judging line brightness/colour is not necessarily a skill that should be crucial.

Again, I’m not sure how they are currently supposed to do it, but I suggest a ‘progress bar’ approach, eg lines shortening until empty, then a flashing red line.

A second issue I have with the shields is the location. You have six indicators for six shield sections all in four separate areas of the HUD. A quick check up on shields will require the eyes to move to four separate areas of the screen. I would suggest to centralize the info and perhaps place it next to/on top of the hull strength indicator.

I see two ways to centralize, each with it’s own philosophy.

One way would be to simply miniaturize the shield circle. It would be slightly more difficult to gauge, but it would be more useful for a quick glance check up. This would be used for smaller shields, with a quick recharge, so interceptors and bombers would benefit from this system.

Another method is to replace the circle with a percentage system. More time might be needed to process the info, as you would have to read. However, I see this being useful when shields are so big that attacks from smaller ships won’t really register a change on a circle, as it would be the difference of a pixel or less. But when in combat with larger ships, the ability to judge exactly how strong one’s shields are would be helpful. So this would be used on destroyers, carriers, etc.

In my opinion, the option should be their to switch to whatever indicator one would prefer, either on the fly or in the options menu.

In any case, the current shield indicators are somewhat camouflaged by the speed/hull indicators. I would make them more distinguishable.

2) Squadron list

This also spills a little outside of the squadron list.

First off, for a pure flight experience, this isn’t really needed on-screen, but given this is a combat game, this should be seen. It’s placement/size is good, so nothing there.

As to the content, the colour change is good, but the little bar to the far right is too small, and it’s function is unclear.

I would somehow emphasize the squadron number rather than the names.

When squadron members get on screen, I would remove the name entirely, and just have the squadron designation, for two reasons. First, I don’t really like reading fast moving text while trying to say something to that person. Reading a number allows for quicker communication. The difference is when trying to tell “7A, someone’s behind you” or “Bo0m3rL33T007MLG360noscopeXxX someone’s behind you”.

For these reasons, I would consider removing the names of the players from the squadron list (at least on the HUD). Again, a dedicated menu would be good for more detailed info, but on the fly not really needed.

If people want the names up, then a menu option should do the trick.

3) Weapon indicator

Assuming that the vertical progress bar is a heat mechanic or an indicator of how full the magazine is, it’s too small. I would turn the entire icon into a horizontal progress bar.

Assuming that the vertical progress bar is an ammo counter, then I would remove it, and stick with the numerical counter below.

I don’t see the need for two counters, a numerical and a visual. For something like ammo count I think the numerical counter would be more helpful.

4) Altimeter

In most of the flight games I’ve played, the altimeter is next to the pitch indicator. I see it as slightly being more helpful in the center.

Well, I’m out of ideas at the moment. Maybe you’ll find some of this useful, maybe not.

Anyways, again, looks great!


[quote=“Argopeilacos, post:10, topic:4300, full:true”]
I really like the no-nonsense style. Didn’t notice at first the indicators for shield integrity. Are the square bracket ones for top/bottom sections?[/quote]

Correct, that’s exactly what it is.

Note that not all ships will have 6 shields. We haven’t determined yet how shields will operate, nor if the fighter will have only 2 shields ( front / back ), or if the corvette will be 4 or 6 .

Huh, okay, I thought it was just some styling. Good to know.

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‘Does anyone realize your balls get smaller the older you get?’

lol classic

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This has prompted a few more thoughts from me:

  • Low shield alerts and low weapon ammo/energy should be easily visible in peripheral vision. You shouldn’t have to look at anything to know you’re low.

  • Totally agree that names are not needed in squadron lists. Giving players designations might increase the sense of teamwork as well as speeding up communication.

  • As the prototype stands, I find the altitude largely irrelevant. However, the little red bar that tells me if my speed and vector are going to result in a collision, that’s useful. And easy to include on the speed display.

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What I would like to see is a build in option to change the now green color of the hud to an other color. Maybe just a color slider in the main menu. I really dig the green and probably wouldnt change it but having the option would be great because people like to customize and they probably will mod it anyway if its not build in. They do it in Elite D. and it such a simple thing brings varity to a game.


I thought it was something you had to mod into Elite. Seeing an option to swap out colours for friendlies and foes would be a nice addition.

There was a way to change the colour scheme, but it was very limited. It wasn’t even changing the colour scheme, but rather just applying basically an instagram filter over the HUD.

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