Op Ed

truepcgaming - Visual Noise: A Criticism of HUDs.
Having a player’s health, ammunition, inventory, and abilities always visible is a staple of the gaming medium, but one that we may be better off learning to deal without. I make this claim based solely on the experiences of noticing that virtually all games get better without an always-on interface. I’ve managed to nix 90% of the unnecessary HUD materials off New Vegas through two mods, and the result is a game that is unquestionably more immersive, balanced, difficult, and above all, beautiful.

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Re: Op Ed
Sep 17, 2011, 18:54
15.
Re: Op Ed Sep 17, 2011, 18:54
Sep 17, 2011, 18:54
 
In a general sense, I agree with the author. I am not looking at the HUD to experience the story, to challenge myself, out of some sense of fun, to notice some character moment, or to explore the world - it is just there to show me basic game mechanics.

When you take out the intrusive elements, I have frequently thought that games, even ones with "bad" graphics, look quite good or, at the very least, look interesting.

I know I will go to hell for this example, but I think WoW is a good example. There are all these characters from different races, there might be a gigantic lava elemental, you could be in an ancient temple, there are fantastical spell effects going off...yet all I am really doing is starting at my cooldowns on a bar and making sure there is no fire at the center of my screen. Who cares what this game or other games have to offer visually when all my focus is spent on only 20% of the screen?

From a broad perspective, I have found that I received many, many inquiries from casual gamers or non-gamers when there is little/no UI present (either via options or during a cinematic.)
And yeah, does my gun have to talk up 1/3 of my screen?
Thinking more work could be put into streamlining them,
Ray
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