Express goal achieved + UI design process
Thank you all for supporting this campaign and this game! You finished in time the challenge we proposed in our last update. Queen Ylîa's weapon set will be available for FREE when the game launches for everyone thanks to your support!
UI Design process
When tackling the mission of designing the game’s User Interface (UI) the head-up display (HUD) design is the first step. HUD includes every graphic asset and text box that provides the user with all the essential information they need in-game: health, special abilities available, map, status effects among others.
Combining ideas from other titles such as Assassin’s Creed, Diablo III or The Witcher, we decided we wanted something clean, not too intrusive but at the same time that matched the game’s visual style and added little elements of lore in its design.
The Tenth Hell: Stygian has come a long way visually speaking and the HUD has evolved alongside it. Heavily inspired by northern European and Viking aesthetic. These celtic knots turn into metal rings, squares and swords with hidden symbols that will make more sense as the player learns about the true nature of the city.
After many iterations, the final design is compact and easy to read. It includes health and experience bar at the top left corner where the status effects are also shown and the gem glows with each level up. The mini map, time of the day and mission log are at the top right corner. The energy bar, 3 slots for special powers and the wrath bar that, when fully charged, unleashes the spectre’s wrath power are located at the bottom left corner. And finally at the opposite corner two equipped consumables are shown. These are not the only HUD elements integrated: dialog boxes, timed decisions, target mode, tutorial messages and all sort of icons and visual keys are essential for the player to keep up with the controls, story and objectives of the game.
The next step was to design Axel’s diary where he writes down all the important information, inventory, equipment, character stats, powers, maps, lore, missions and more. These sections are indicated via bookmarks on the diary’s fore edge.
The inventory is the section that has undergone the most development and is fully functional at this point of production. The other sections are but a draft of how they might be like in the future. It was first conceived like big MMORPG titles like Guild Wars, Elder Scrolls Online or World of Warcraft with extensive lists of items and equipment shown in a way the user can keep track of all of them with just one glance. After some discussion we came to the conclusion this system was not suitable for the type of game we wanted to develop, it was too complex and made the interface feel cluttered. So instead, we turned to a more simplistic approach like in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, where items are catalogued in a few tabs and the character dressed with the desired equipment is shown at all times. Hence, Axel stands on the left page of the inventory with all the equipped armour and items while on the right page the inventory is distributed in 5 tabs: weapons, armours, consumables, miscellany items and quest items.
Loading pages with bits of lore, the gory game over screen, the options menu… all these are also part of the game’s UI that you, the player, have the chance to discover in the demo.
Finally, on the main menu, the southern district gates stand heavily guarded but still a small opening has been breached and the gloomy light from the undead is slipping through, reminding you are never safe in Stygian…
Projects we love
We are starting to share in these project updates some of our own projects we love that are currently live on Kickstarter with you all.
Today we present you Pantropy! This game is a really interesting multiplayer FPS with sci-fi aesthetics that also features a sandbox world! How cool is that? You can check it out here.