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Apr 12, 2006



I came away from the previous anti-HUD article with a sense that I didn't exactly agree with it, and I think this notion explains why. I've actually been working on a HUD for World of Warcraft with the goal of brining information I should KNOW into the center of my focus (such as when I'm badly hurt, or am afflicted by a significant debuff from an enemy) so that I can regain that instinctive knowledge without having my attention pulled from the game world to the instrumentation which surrounds it.

There's a definite balance to be struck between clutter that detracts from the "being there" experience, and providing information that just can't be conveyed through the visuals in the world without making that some kind of augmented reality (which given our real world frame of reference ALSO detracts from immersion).


I'm largely unconvinced by the current antil-HUD talk. There are obviously several game types where it can be explored (I think the fighting game was a bit of a ringer in making the case, if that's not too gratuitous a pun), and obviously where you can integrate hud data into the game in a meaningful way, you might as well -- the idea of putting ammo counts on the gun a la Doom 3 comes to mind.

But on the other hand, I think console games are much more hampered by their horribly designed controllers than they are their HUD designs... personally, I find thumbsticks near unusable.

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