Some thoughts about the HUD from the programmer's POV. When the trying-ideas-out process is over and you are ready to release art files to the programmer:
- The top and bottom (dark red) panels of the HUD should be separate files from the world art that goes between them. (You might supply two different HUD files, one for top and one for bottom, or they can be the same, whichever you decide.) This will make it possible to scroll the world while the HUD stays in the same position.
- The underlying part of the HUD (pretty much just blood-red now) should be one file, and each of the items that might go on top of it should be in a different file. (You can put each on-top asset in its own file, or have a "sprite-sheet" type file with lots of assets.) The important thing is that the program will put the various indicators, such as bottles of water, in the right place at the right time. Sometimes an indicator won't be showing.
- Think about digits and letters you want displayed (e.g. "07/20" from "Slightly Revised Layout"). The two options are 1) use a standard font; 2) the artist supplies the art for each digit and letter. Option 1 is easier, but has two big problems: it won't work if the player doesn't have that font on his or her computer; and it looks lousy. I'd prefer to go with option 2, but it is more work work for both artist and programmer.
-Dan Frost, from UCI