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Where to display the score in a VR game?

Discussion in 'Game Design' started by JoeStrout, Apr 12, 2018.

  1. JoeStrout


    Jan 14, 2011
    This is probably a dumb question, but as I'm still fairly new to it...

    Is there a standard way/place to display a score in a VR game? I could use essentially a screen-space Canvas, and have it in a fixed position in your field of view. Or I could put it somewhere it space, which means you'd only see it when you happen to look in that direction.

    I can see pros and cons to either way, but at the moment I'm leaning towards putting it somewhere in space, at least for a game where you don't move around much. On my Cardboard viewer, at least, I find that stuff near the periphery of the view gets hard to read.

    But if there's a convention, I'd like to know about it before consciously choosing to ignore it!
  2. Innovine


    Aug 6, 2017
    I think it depends a lot on the game. I know I appreciate it when the score is integrated into the actual game environment. As an example, the RecRoom paintball arena has a giant scoreboard, much like any sporting arena would have one. It's really natural to look around for it and quickly see your kills or team score. They don't use any HUD or screenspace stuff there.

    Looking at something attached to your wrist is another reasonably well integrated way of doing it, if you are using motion controllers. If you don't have motion controllers, maybe looking straight down at your chest could bring up some statistics and scores, and have them disappear when you look up again.

    For an example of what not to do, Subnautica is a flatscreen game with VR added, and they didn't do much with the HUD. Some of the icons, like the compass, your health, and the amount of oxygen remaining are displayed so far to the side of the display that you cannot even see them (it was 10's of hours before I even noticed I had a compass in Subnautica, it was completely outside my field of view). If you are targeting multiple headsets and are using some screenspace stuff, please try to get this checked on different headsets.
    TonyLi, Ryiah, Martin_H and 1 other person like this.
  3. Martin_H


    Jul 11, 2015
    I like the diegetic UI ideas. I could imagine a banner being raised or a waving flag where the number printed on it changes, if you should go with a castle defense theme.
    Or maybe notches on your bow, quiver, wristband, whatever. This is for the archery game too, right?
  4. MD_Reptile


    Jan 19, 2012
    I love games where they stick the UI elements "in the world" and use a world space canvas to do it.

    Like for instance, a FPS game might indicate ammo on a little display on the weapon, or in a first person magic game, mana might be shown by a glowing thingy on your hand or something...

    For VR - it has to help with immersion to NOT place a floating magic hud on the users "eyes" and instead place markers in the world depending on what they indicate.

    For score in VR, if its a game where you can look at your arms/hands/mandibles in the first person view, then maybe try and put a bracelet or glove that has a little display on it, which the player can look at to determine score?

    EDIT: Wrote that whole thing without reading anything but the first post :p - these guys beat me to it :D
  5. Eyon_game


    Mar 4, 2015
    Well, same things as you guys :
    - I think for VR best UI elements are part of the worlds and not just UI that sticks to the screen. VR is rather new so there are no rules. Try new stuff, be creative =)
  6. Habitablaba


    Aug 5, 2013
    I think the general best practice is to not paste stuff to the player's face if you can avoid doing so.
    Depending on the game you're making, it cool be cool to have the UI element be something like a sign that the player can move around and place wherever in-world they feel is most useful.
    Eyon_game and MD_Reptile like this.