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View Full Version : The minimalistic HUD trend, should AC follow?



Sushiglutton
08-10-2013, 09:07 AM
It seems to me to be a small trend in the action/adventure genre lately to reduce the HUD as much as possible and in many segments not have it at all. I'm thinking of games like Tomb Raider and TLOU for example. When you are not engaged in combat there is typically no HUD at all. In combat the HUD is small and discrete. Messages do not pop up during gameplay (Naughty Dog even stopped trophies from showing). There are few markers in the games and they are fairly discrete.

I know AC1 was designed to be played with no HUD. AC3 was clearly not as you runned into trouble when you disabled it (for example some checkpoints you needed to pass were very small). AC is an open world game which complicates thing as you have to help the player more with directions. Still when I watch the AC4 gameplay vids and think back on AC3 I feel bombarded with un-organic visual cues. Markers, messages, extra objectives, hints, your ranking on leaderboards etc etc.

To me this is very immersion breaking and a fairly big problem. I try to disable as much as I can, but it's hard to customize the HUD the way I want to, as the game is not built for it. I wish AC tried to move away from the news program visual style it currently has.

ProletariatPleb
08-10-2013, 09:21 AM
Yes. Minimalistic hud is awesome.

You should see how amazing King Kong game was. No hud at all.

Sushiglutton
08-10-2013, 09:26 AM
Yes. Minimalistic hud is awesome.

You should see how amazing King Kong game was. No hud at all.

Had to Youtube it :). No HUD adds suprisingly much to the immersion. I really wish Ubi rethinked this and tried to figure out ways to help players in more subtle ways.

ProletariatPleb
08-10-2013, 09:30 AM
Here's a good read:
http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2013/07/who-needs-a-hud-metro-last-light-and-the-return-to-realism/

There was another great article but I can't find it right now.

For AC3 I slowly started dropping hud elements and I find it more enjoyable now without any sort of hud at all.

Combat doesn't have giant annoying triangles and I have to rely on perception and awareness.
Naval combat is a bit challenging in night missions since it's hard to spot ships.

OSantaClownO
08-10-2013, 09:54 AM
Here's a good read:
http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2013/07/who-needs-a-hud-metro-last-light-and-the-return-to-realism/

There was another great article but I can't find it right now.

For AC3 I slowly started dropping hud elements and I find it more enjoyable now without any sort of hud at all.

Combat doesn't have giant annoying triangles and I have to rely on perception and awareness.
Naval combat is a bit challenging in night missions since it's hard to spot ships.

This.
I pretty much dropped everything but the map so I could navigate and that's it.

Farlander1991
08-10-2013, 11:26 AM
In case of AC it's two-fold for me.

On one hand, I love the HUD-less gameplay of AC1, but you really can't play any other AC game like that comfortably (at least minimap is required to prevent you from going on the map screen all the time).

On another hand, I'm one of those people who loves Animus as an idea (I think it's a great concept for a various number of reasons), and in my case it helps with the immersion greatly. All those markers, lights, defects, and everything. And one of the most important things that it provides: it reminds me that it's a simulation, a reliving of different parts of memories, that I'm not actually that character in that period of time.

Now, this may sound counter-intuitive to being immersed in the world, but not for me. Because if I go racing with the thieves instead of going to save Caterina Sforza, I know that Ezio didn't actually do it that way (basically, the 'why you chase chickens when you need to save the world' dilemma is solved fairly neatly in this case), that I'm just reliving parts of the DNA that way. I know that if I start a massacre for no reason in the middle of the city as Connor and kill 300 men, that it's just a simulation and that the ancestor didn't actually participate in such things.

I know that there are a lot of un-organic things in the world and I know that it's not actually real. But I also know that my actions make sense in the great scheme of things regardless of what I do and in what order (which for me personally may be a great deal-breaker in a lot of open-world games).

ProletariatPleb
08-10-2013, 11:31 AM
In case of AC it's two-fold for me.

On one hand, I love the HUD-less gameplay of AC1, but you really can't play any other AC game like that comfortably (at least minimap is required to prevent you from going on the map screen all the time).

On another hand, I'm one of those people who loves Animus as an idea (I think it's a great concept for a various number of reasons), and in my case it helps with the immersion greatly. All those markers, lights, defects, and everything. And one of the most important things that it provides: it reminds me that it's a simulation, a reliving of different parts of memories, that I'm not actually that character in that period of time.
Well nobody said don't have any hud at all. We're talking about making it non...clutter-y

Farlander1991
08-10-2013, 11:41 AM
Well nobody said don't have any hud at all. We're talking about making it non...clutter-y

Well, AC3 hud was actually very non-cluttery (with the exception of the weapon wheel). Though there were a number of pop-ups that did indeed clutter it, but they could be turned off. And sure, it stayed on the screen all the time, but it took very little space and was easy to quickly check and look at. In AC4 case it seems to be the opposite - the weapon wheel is sleek and fast, while the rest of the hud is again all over the place.

ProletariatPleb
08-10-2013, 11:51 AM
Well, AC3 hud was actually very non-cluttery (with the exception of the weapon wheel). Though there were a number of pop-ups that did indeed clutter it, but they could be turned off. And sure, it stayed on the screen all the time, but it took very little space and was easy to quickly check and look at. In AC4 case it seems to be the opposite - the weapon wheel is sleek and fast, while the rest of the hud is again all over the place.
Yeah. I was just responding to what was asked.

Should AC follow the trend? Yes. :p

nitres15
08-10-2013, 11:54 AM
yes please ! I was watching the naval fort gameplay the other day. And i couldnŽt stop looking at those ugly markers in front of the towers. Hopefully iŽll be able to turn those off.

Jack-Reacher
08-10-2013, 11:57 AM
...I always just turn the HUD off in the AC games, except for when I think I absolutely need it. Otherwise, I spend most of the games playing side missions. When you do the real deal, the normal missions are a piece of cake without the HUD as well.

Shahkulu101
08-10-2013, 12:26 PM
The HUD was so subtle in The Last of Us I can't remember it at all. AC should adopt that kind of approach.

x___Luffy___x
08-10-2013, 12:36 PM
minimalistic HUD is great. AC1 had the best in regards to that..

pirate1802
08-10-2013, 12:37 PM
Yes. They should follow the minimalistic HUD trend.

Sushiglutton
08-10-2013, 02:55 PM
yes please ! I was watching the naval fort gameplay the other day. And i couldnŽt stop looking at those ugly markers in front of the towers. Hopefully iŽll be able to turn those off.

Yeah I kept thinking the same thing when I watched the gameplay. I mean if a giant tower is firing cannonballs on yiu do we really need a red icon pointing it out? Similarily do the sharks really need red markers to be visible in the underwater segments?

poptartz20
08-10-2013, 04:29 PM
Well... Usually depending on the game I don't mind having the HUD and several social cues. But The last of Us I barely noticed it. AC3 Took that approach to a certain sense. but yes it could be more minimalistic.

OSantaClownO
08-11-2013, 12:24 AM
AC3 Health bar was an attempt to make a minimalistic HUD - Which honestly wasn't my favourite move.

LoyalACFan
08-11-2013, 12:54 AM
Honestly, all I want is a minimap and a money counter. I could comfortably go without a health bar, attack icons, weapon icons, and basically everything else. But as long as I can turn them off, I'm good.

TheDanteEX
08-11-2013, 06:36 AM
The series can definitely benefit from a clearer screen. There doesn't need to be a health bar when health regenerates and there's a visual indication of when health is low. Button displays aren't needed but help beginners with button context, since B/circle seems to do everything. With AC4's new weapon wheel and not being able to kill civilians by mistake, I don't think the weapon display is all that necessary either. Civilians will probably never attack you anyway. Mini-map is crucial to navigation and awareness. Ammunition should only show when aiming your weapon. SSI should be on by default, but when it's off the sound of being detected should be removed as well. I'd rather listen to guard dialogue if I'm detected on rooftops or they're coming to investigate. Also AC3 had a visual glitch where the SSI icon would flash on screen when detected for half a second. I'd rather it gone completely. Money can stay in the corner along with the map.

At least this is what I think. This post is a bit of a mess.

lothario-da-be
08-11-2013, 10:48 AM
Yes ac should follow. Too much HUD and bugs are the most immersion breaking things.

shobhit7777777
08-11-2013, 12:06 PM
Minimum **** on screen plz.

Black Flags seems to be a good looking game....the overt UI messes it up.

ProletariatPleb
08-11-2013, 12:19 PM
Needless to say once I get used to the combat etc I'll just keep the minimap on in AC4.

Sushiglutton
08-11-2013, 12:42 PM
Here is an example. Beautiful underwater scenery. We have a healthbar, a shark indicator, airbar, button configuration, mini-map (is it really needed in this small confined area?), and a message of a new fast travel location unlocked.http://s11.postimg.org/dw6jh1877/AC4.png (http://postimage.org/)



Here is another example: Sailspeed, ship health, event indicator, boarding bar, tons od little red icon pointing out the towers firing cannons at you... button configuration, mini-map and a amunition counter.



http://s14.postimg.org/g5t1vxefl/AC4_2.png (http://postimage.org/)

ProletariatPleb
08-11-2013, 01:22 PM
I hope those can be turned off.

pirate1802
08-11-2013, 01:37 PM
Yo Shobhit! Long time no see? :D:

adventurewomen
08-11-2013, 01:49 PM
The AC3 HUD is already minimalistic compared to all previous HUD's in AC, I can't see the UI getting more minimalistic than that. tbh.

ProletariatPleb
08-11-2013, 01:50 PM
The AC3 HUD is already minimalistic compared to all previous HUD's in AC, I can't see the UI getting more minimalistic than that. tbh.
"Compared" to yes, but that's not saying much...

adventurewomen
08-11-2013, 01:51 PM
"Compared" to yes, but that's not saying much...
Of course it is! :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

Shahkulu101
08-11-2013, 04:50 PM
Here is an example. Beautiful underwater scenery. We have a healthbar, a shark indicator, airbar, button configuration, mini-map (is it really needed in this small confined area?), and a message of a new fast travel location unlocked.http://s11.postimg.org/dw6jh1877/AC4.png (http://postimage.org/)



Here is another example: Sailspeed, ship health, event indicator, boarding bar, tons od little red icon pointing out the towers firing cannons at you... button configuration, mini-map and a amunition counter.



http://s14.postimg.org/g5t1vxefl/AC4_2.png (http://postimage.org/)

Wow that is ugly. Someone should tweet Ashraf about this mess.

ProletariatPleb
08-11-2013, 04:57 PM
Wow that is ugly. Someone should tweet Ashraf about this mess.
He'll quit with all these tweets, lol.

shobhit7777777
08-11-2013, 07:20 PM
Yo Shobhit! Long time no see? :D:

Kaise ho?

I've been here...lurking ;)


http://s14.postimg.org/g5t1vxefl/AC4_2.png


Holy ****...what the ****?

Thats a lot of HUD....

ProletariatPleb
08-11-2013, 07:29 PM
Holy ****...what the ****?

Thats a lot of HUD....
First thing to do when we get AC4, would be to turn off the hud elements.

Btw Shobhit, Thief also consolized/casualized :/

shobhit7777777
08-11-2013, 07:52 PM
First thing to do when we get AC4, would be to turn off the hud elements.

Btw Shobhit, Thief also consolized/casualized :/

You mean "Thi4f" ;) (Seriously...a 4? SMH)

I haven't seen anything related to Thief 4....whatsup with it?

Jexx21
08-11-2013, 07:56 PM
It isn't a sequel anymore, it's a reboot.

It's just "Thief."

ProletariatPleb
08-11-2013, 07:59 PM
It isn't a sequel anymore, it's a reboot.

It's just "Thief."
You missed the joke, taffer.

And I'll tell you in PM, Shobhit.

shobhit7777777
08-11-2013, 08:03 PM
You missed the joke, taffer.

And I'll tell you in PM, Shobhit.

Right on

Megas_Doux
08-11-2013, 08:10 PM
I never use the hud besides the notifications, anyways :P
A change of style would be welcomed, though.

Sushiglutton
08-11-2013, 08:59 PM
Btw Shobhit, Thief also consolized/casualized :/

Haven't really followed Thief, what's the problem? All I heard after E3 was the Headshot XP thing, which I thought was stupid but not that big of a deal. Thought the demo looked okey.




Holy ****...what the ****?

Thats a lot of HUD....

It is pretty crazy :nonchalance:

ProletariatPleb
08-11-2013, 09:10 PM
Haven't really followed Thief, what's the problem? All I heard after E3 was the Headshot XP thing, which I thought was stupid but not that big of a deal. Thought the demo looked okey.



It is pretty crazy :nonchalance:

Maybe it's just my nerves(JADED)...but I'm hearing all sorts of bad things that don't seem..'Thief-y' at all...I want me challenging stealth!
Forced action sequences.
QTEs.
The role of darkness replaced by fog.
More focus on combat instead of...thievery. Some focus mode to slowdown time for combat(good news: it can be turned off)
All the frantasy elements removed.
Jumping and usage of rope arrows contextual because "jumping breaks immersion"
Scripted sequences and first/third person transitioning cutscenes, sometimes so many that players were baffled. Garret falling and then QTE to "save" yourself.
Explosions
Objective markers was mentioned as well I think

EDIT: We should take this to PM really.

Sushiglutton
08-11-2013, 09:23 PM
Maybe it's just my nerves(JADED)...but I'm hearing all sorts of bad things that don't seem..'Thief-y' at all...I want me challenging stealth!
Forced action sequences.
QTEs.
The role of darkness replaced by fog.
More focus on combat instead of...thievery. Some focus mode to slowdown time for combat(good news: it can be turned off)
All the frantasy elements removed.
Jumping and usage of rope arrows contextual because "jumping breaks immersion"
Scripted sequences and first/third person transitioning cutscenes, sometimes so many that players were baffled. Garret falling and then QTE to "save" yourself.
Explosions
Objective markers was mentioned as well I think

EDIT: We should take this to PM really.

Hmm that does sound worrying tbh. Same misstake EA is making imo. Instead of pushing what's unique they try to copy other games that sell more. Disaster for MoH, didn't work well for Dead Space, Mass Effect is doing ok though.

I think it would be financially smarter to make Thief a niche game so they got the internet-momentum of being the number one stealth game. Trying to compete with AC seems hopeless and pointless. In Thief there shouldn't be a choice (for the most part).

I'm going to bed now, work tomorrow :).

Sigv4rd
08-13-2013, 04:49 AM
I love Mirrors Edge for it's hud (or lack of hud rather)