September 9, 2008

Week 6: Game Interface

Filed under: ECU MInT,GDT3102 Writing for Games — steve @ 3:13 pm

Game interface plus navigation keys and buttons help file for “Psycho-Ego“:


Game interface Icons from left to right:

  • Hunger Icon & Metre: determined by the amount of sustenance (food and drink) the Player obtains.
  • Energy Icon & Metre: determined by hunger levels, “physical” activity and the need for sleep.
  • Libido Icon & Metre: determined by ‘hunger’ and ‘energy’ levels as well as satisfying psychological needs and desires in the game.
  • Text field: instructions/feedback list field.
  • Speech Button [F5]: opens Dialogue chat field for interaction with NPCs.
  • Tools Button [F6]: opens the Player’s Tools manifest list. A tool is anything that the Player can use to act upon the game world.
  • Journal Button [F7]: opens the Player’s Journal window which lists completed and yet to be completed missions and sub-missions.
  • Maps Button [F8]: opens a list of the Player’s collected Maps, if any.
  • Help/Info Button [F9]: provides access to context sensitive help, where applicable, general game help and game system settings.

Loose Concept:

I guess with the interface it was one of those intuitive designs – the kind of thing they teach you in art school where you let your intuition lead the design and then reflect back on it and then label it – just like most students’ approach to their work – design it first and then justify it afterwards! The only real concepts I worked with were the choice of stone and wood textures to reflect a traditional, mythical past, as well as the headline font as it had that classic look to it and reminded me of the font ‘Optima’ which my father really liked as it reminded him of that classic, Hellenistic sort of style – somewhere between a serif and sans-serif. The hand as the representation of the first person avatar was perhaps inspired in part by Bio Shock, but not nearly as detailed – there is only so much you can do with the wingdings and webdings fonts when there is not a great deal of time to spare.


Keyboard game option keys:

  • Esc = opens/closes exit/save game dialogue box
  • F1 = pause/resume game
  • F2 = opens/closes game preferences
  • F3 = opens/closes game graphic settings
  • F4 = opens/closes game audio settings
  • F5 = opens/closes dialogue chat
  • F6 = opens/closes the tool’s manifest list
  • F7 = opens/closes the journal window
  • F8 = opens/closes maps window
  • F9 = opens/closes help window
  • TAB = closes active [in-game] window


Keyboard navigation keys:

  • W = move forward
  • A = strafe-left
  • S = move backward
  • D = strafe-right
  • Alt + W = crawl forward
  • Alt + A =  crawl left
  • Alt + S = crawl backward
  • Alt + D = crawl right
  • Shift + W = run
  • Shift + A = roll to the left
  • Shift + A = roll backwards
  • Shift + D = roll to the right
  • Space-bar = jump up
  • Space-barW = jump/hop forward
  • Space-barA = left kick
  • Space-bar + S = squat down
  • Space-barD = right kick
  • Shift + Space-barW = forward somersault power drop-kick
  • Shift + Space-barA = round-house left kick
  • Shift + Space-barS = back-flip kick
  • Shift + Space-barD = round-house right kick


Mouse navigation:

  • Mouse X axis movement = look-left, look-right
  • Mouse Y axis movement = look-up, look-down
  • Left mouse button = punch (default) or use tool/weapon (if selected [F6])
  • Shift + Left mouse button = block
  • Right mouse button = to interact with a NPC, or clicking on an object when enquiring as to the relevance of that object to the Player’s progress in the game

Alternative mouse button settings (set in game preferences [F2]):

  • Left mouse button = block
  • Shift + Left mouse button = to interact with a NPC, or clicking on an object when enquiring as to the relevance of that object to the Player’s progress in the game
  • Right mouse button = punch (default) or use tool/weapon (if selected [F6])

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