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Csonicgo

How is the HUD? It's a Nightmare: A Visual Rant

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DISCLAIMER: This is a mild annoyance, not really a showstopper, but I'm ranting anyway.

I have Simple myopia in one eye and astigmatism in the other, which means that seeing sharp objects far away is an extreme pain, even with glasses. This makes games that like to pack on the fine-lined text an immediate uninstall for me. One of the things that I liked about Doom is that the HUD had nice, chunky red letters that stood out:


Extra chunky.

Quake 3? Same thing. Some even said they were too large:


Shut up kiddie, those numbers are perfect.

Doom 3? Not as big, but, free from clutter from the action:

Smaller size is made better through contrast on the teal background.

Then, I picked up Wolf: TNO, which apparently requires a Hubble telescope to read:

Might as well not even have a HUD at this point!

Aaaand let's see how Doom 2016 loo--

Oh fuck that, NO!

Is that armor a 6? an 8? from distance of my couch to the TV, it might as well be random letters, because I can't see that shit.

I have had zero problems with HUDs in most games. The numbers are ideally fit to a standard size display and scaled up as resolutions get higher. they aren't supposed to get smaller. It's NOT supposed to be like this:

I might have health, who knows? Who cares! Rip and tear amirite?

I'm sorry, Bethesda, but unless there's an option to scale the HUD up, or add contrast to the background, This won't be touched even if it's in the bargain bin. It's one of the reasons Super Mario Maker gets shit from me:

I have saw coins and spikeball score. I should be good!

Game makers, it must be nice being able to sit 4 inches from the screen as you develop these games, and PC gamers, it must be nice to sit 4 inches from the screen as you play these games, but console users are usually playing these games on the same setup they watch Netflix, Family Feud, and PornHub. You know, couch on one side of the room, and the TV on the other side? These TV setups aren't meant for reading fine-print text. That's why car commercials do that fine-print shit near the end of the thing - because you can't read it unless you get up and look!

Does everyone in the industry have eyes that can see the RGB pixels in their monitors, or am I just the outlier here? This is bullshit!

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Did you seriously just say that you won't pick up a good game from your favorite franchise, even from the bargain bin, just because the HUD is too small for your taste?

StevenC21 likes this

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The Civ said:

Did you seriously just say that you won't pick up a good game from your favorite franchise, even from the bargain bin, just because the HUD is too small for your taste?


The Disclaimer is too small? Shit, here:

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The Civ said:

Did you seriously just say that you won't pick up a good game from your favorite franchise, even from the bargain bin, just because the HUD is too small for your taste?

Some people like to know how much health and ammo they have when playing a game. Some people might find it a better challenge when they don't know what the bloody hell they're doing.

I also find modern day HUDs and other displays too frigging small. Quick shoutout to modern game makers: Not everyone can afford 40K-style bionic implants. If I wanted a migraine I'd just drink red bull or stay up too late every night, not play a game and spend ages squinting at pages of impossible to read text. FFS.

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I Like small HUDs, They let me see what's under my feet .

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I can read all of these fine, but I suppose a HUD scale slider wouldn't hurt because yah, not everyone has the same eyes.

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Clonehunter said:

I can read all of these fine, but I suppose a HUD scale slider wouldn't hurt because yah, not everyone has the same eyes.

Ditto, though I generally like having a smaller hud. Wouldn't hurt for more forms of options to be added.

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Console problems...

I haven't had any issues with the HUD what-so-ever on PC. I understand how the small numbers could be an issue for those sitting a good distance away from monitors/TVs, though.

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chubz said:

Console problems...

I haven't had any issues with the HUD what-so-ever on PC. I understand how the small numbers could be an issue for those sitting a good distance away from monitors/TVs, though.


That's the weird part, though. For a game on a console, it sure expects players to be inches from the screen.

In all honesty the only saving grace is that it has a "bar" that moves enough to get a general idea of how you're doing. Wolf TNO didn't even have that.

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Csonicgo said:

That's the weird part, though. For a game on a console, it sure expects players to be inches from the screen.

In all honesty the only saving grace is that it has a "bar" that moves enough to get a general idea of how you're doing. Wolf TNO didn't even have that.

I sit about 11 feet from my TV and have no problem seeing it. I have a 55" LCD TV and glasses on, so that might have something to do with it. Can't see how having an option to scale the HUD would hurt though.

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If the HUD is generally not too hard to see for me. However it does seem like almost every single console game has text that is way too small to see and that includes this one. I have to sit on the floor a few feet away from the TV just read the codexes. Seems like every freaking console game is like this, no text scaling at all. It has gotten a shit ton worse since the PS3 and Xbox 360 too. For reference my current TV is 55 inch.

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julz_d said:

If the HUD is generally not too hard to see for me. However it does seem like almost every single console game has text that is way too small to see and that includes this one. I have to sit on the floor a few feet away from the TV just read the codexes. Seems like every freaking console game is like this, no text scaling at all. It has gotten a shit ton worse since the PS3 and Xbox 360 too. For reference my current TV is 55 inch.

I remember this being a huge issue when the 360 came out, before I had an HD TV. Text was so small on crts that I had to sit directly in front of the TV to make it out. Haven't had that issue since I got glasses and an HD TV.

Just out of curiosity but have you gotten your vision tested? I didn't know I had bad eye site until I was 19 and mine is pretty bad beyond about 4 feet, but I had no idea.

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Yeah I might need glasses but I do set about 15 feet away from the TV.

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julz_d said:

Yeah I might need glasses but I do set about 15 feet away from the TV.

Crud, without my glasses I can't really see past like 1 foot away (past that looks like someone put some variation of a blur filter on). Probably why I generally like being closer to whatever I am playing a game on.

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julz_d said:

Yeah I might need glasses but I do set about 15 feet away from the TV.

Probably a bad combo, lol. Too bad devs don't consider that everyone doesn't have the ideal setup in regards to distance from the TV when it comes to text size/scaling.

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From where I sit now I can read the legend on the map and other things but not what it says under challenges .

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OP raises good points. Shame that big chunky fonts have seemingly been phased out of gaming. It doesn't present a huge problem to me personally, but...

when did this:


become sexier than this?


Enough with the font shaming, games industry. #FontWidthsMatter

Csonicgo said:

I have had zero problems with HUDs in most games. The numbers are ideally fit to a standard size display and scaled up as resolutions get higher. they aren't supposed to get smaller. It's NOT supposed to be like this:
http://i632.photobucket.com/albums/uu49/Snarboo/games/Doom/shotfun1.png
I might have health, who knows? Who cares! Rip and tear amirite?

This can be addressed by entering "hud_scale 1" into the console. That'll blow the numbers up massive for ya. :)

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Csonicgo said:

...but console users are usually playing these games on the same setup they watch Netflix, Family Feud, and PornHub.

FTFY

Seriously though, I agree wholeheartedly. My wife and I just got a new reclining chair and reclining couch set and their size mitigates they be a few feet further back than we're used to. I just end up using an office chair to sit closer so I don't strain my eyes reading anything or trying to pick enemies out from the background. Doom giving is the field of view slider was a great first step (to the point I got a little eye strain watching my wife play Fallout earlier, three days at 110 and I'm already spoiled) but we do need more options for upscaling text. They're already paying two dozen people to design a UI, it can't be that frickin' hard to add scaling.

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I started playing with the hud on, but progressing i noticed i didn't give it
much attention so i turned it off completely. except with the bossfights it was nice
to see how far it was damaged.

Its true the letters are small, so thats may be why i didn't look at em that much.
And indeed a slider would be nice, but i think it's all a matter of creating new
habits. unless of course you are suffering from vision impairment. I used to have
myopia as well so i know what it's like. It's fixable for a decent price but i
assure u it's worth it. :)

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I have another problem with hud - it is too Halo. I really loved sexy minimalistic HUD in Wolfenstein the New Order.

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Honestly your example doesn't help much since it's from a compressed IGN Youtube video.
When you're actually playing with the game on screen infront of you it actually isn't that tiny, unless you have a tiny screen or somehow don't have an HDTV alongside your $400 console or 720p monitor at least alongside a much more expensive desktop computer.

Yes, it's still a little oddly sleek for such a brutal game and on the small side, but still. And this is coming from someone with astigmatism in their right eye, who's playing at 1280x720 in borderless windowed for optimal performance too.

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I have to admit, it's a bit too tiny. I don't know why they think anything bigger than a strip of tape is visually intrusive. Also, I get that because you're wearing a visor, it's necessarily in perspective, but that makes it even more difficult to read. Honestly, if they had made it about twice as big it'd be just fine.

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>Mild annoyance
>wouldn't touch this game in the bargain bin

so which one is it?

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lol I play DOOM 2016 with ZERO HUD elements. If the helmet's semi-obstructive but immersive visor view could be toggled, I'd totally play it with the HUD elements on, but unfortunately, there's no such option, so, zero HUD elements, because there's no contrast; the helmet would have provided that contrast between the HUD elements and the game world around you.

 

Get the game, crack open the settings, and switch your HUD elements off. Problem solved. You'll get into the swing of knowing exactly how safe you are in no time, even without those nasty little numbers and icons/bars obstructing the carnage. For added badassery, disable that swak little effin aiming handicap, and switch to Classic DOOM Weapon Pose. You'll be bashing skulls without squinting in no time.

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On 5/13/2016 at 12:46 PM, Csonicgo said:

DISCLAIMER: This is a mild annoyance, not really a showstopper, but I'm ranting anyway.
 

...


I'm sorry, Bethesda, but unless there's an option to scale the HUD up, or add contrast to the background, This won't be touched even if it's in the bargain bin.

I'm not gonna knock your opinion but at least make it consistent.

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Interestingly if the game is using an East Asian language you get nice thick bold font-weight numbers, as evidenced by screenshots on the Steam community page. Dunno why that's not an option for everybody :P

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On 5/19/2016 at 12:02 AM, Jimmy said:

when did this:
uKkWNvM.png

become sexier than this?
z3RlwrL.png

Yeah. The same happens with Wolfenstein:

Wolf 3D:

c7185590cf634773b4d56490e26aec1e.jpg

Wolfenstein The New Order:

WolfNewOrder_x64-2014-05-21-06-14-35-43.

 

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I agree. I personally don't have problems with it, but I can see a how a person could. I wear glasses, and for the most part I can see anything on my TV from across the room or on the monitor in front of my face. But if you personally can't see it, then it's an issue. This isn't a subjective "I can see it, why can't you!?" issue. Vision varies from person to person, even with corrective lenses it may be hard to focus on small numbers. 

 

The solution? Games should have a HUD or GUI slider. Period. If it goes up so high that the numbers obscure the whole screen, so be it. People don't have to use that option, but it should be an option. If it goes down so small as to be represented by 10 pixels, so be it. I don't see why anyone would have an issue with providing moreoptions for the players. It shouldn't be hard to implement, I've seen HUD scaling in plenty of games. If it makes it so that more people can play and enjoy the game, I don't see why it isn't more common. 

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