What are GUIs and HUDs?
GUI/HUD are acronyms for Graphical User interface and Heads Up Display respectively. The GUI/HUD is the way that information is displayed on the screen so that the player can see it. GUIs can be extremely simple, having only a couple of items in them, or extremely complex, displaying many, many different pieces of information.
What is the purpose of a GUI/HUD?
The Purpose of the GUI/HUD is to display as much information as possible, as quickly as possible, in a way that the player finds simple to understand. This allows the player to judge how they are performing in the current game, either by themselves or in comparison to the other player(s).
Examples of GUIs/HUDs: Minecraft Pocket Edition
This is the GUI from the game ‘Minecraft: Pocket Edition’. It is fairly simple, featuring only the players health icons, hunger icons, armour icons (if they are wearing any), level bar, and quick access slots. The ellipsis at the right hand side of the quick bar gives access to the players full inventory, armour slots, and basically crafting grid.
Examples of GUIs/HUDs: Half Life 2
This is two images of the same GUI, one of which is displaying more information than the other. In the first image, you can see that only the players health points and ammunition count are visible. However, in the second image, the players suit power, auxiliary power bar, and squad following icons are visible. The items in the GUI, are almost see through in order to make sure that they do not detract from the gameplay.
Examples of GUIs/HUDs: Supreme Commander: Forged Alliance
This GUI comes from the game ‘Supreme Commander: Forged Alliance’, and is much more complex than the previous two GUIs. Around the screen (anti-clockwise from bottom left) is: the generic commands that can be issued to the selected units; the abilities of the current unit selected (which units that can be constructed, if a factory is selected) and tabs if the unit can upgrade specific parts or abilities; the currently created and numbered squads; the display of the current unit count and the unit limit, and the time played on the current game; the Diplomacy tab, which allows diplomacy with other players, and pause menu; and finally the energy and mass count, and the amount of energy and mass being produced per second.
Even the units have elements of the GUI around them, for example, the commander in the center of the screen has several coloured circles centered on it. The large red circle around the outside of the commander is it’s visible radar range, the smaller yellow circle is the commanders weapons range, and the smallest circle is the commanders build range, which shows how close the commander has to be to an placed building marker to be able to construct it.
Minecraft pe: https://i.ytimg.com/vi/20kB5tlvRzQ/hqdefault.jpg
Supreme Commander: Forged Alliance: https://i.ytimg.com/vi/oCIMiX9AABQ/maxresdefault.jpg