Change The Way You Game

Hi! I’m Kat and welcome to my WDD :)! I’m a third-year Interaction Design major with a minor in Game Design. This semester is my first semester at Scout and I’m a Studio Designer! Currently, I’m working on iNerde, a really fun educational platform that I got to make a bee in a robot suit for. I got into design when I was much younger; I loved to make illustrations and PowerPoint presentations for class (but I hated presenting them!). When I first saw the “graphic design is my passion” meme, it hurt my feelings because it hit a bit too close to home… Some of my early designs did look like a clipart frog over procedurally generated photoshop clouds.

Outside of design, three main things run my life: games, makeup, and Vocaloid. Recently, I’ve been playing a lot of Animal Crossing Horizons but I’m also a huge fan of Dragon Quest IX. What’s really cool about Game UI to me is that it feels very fluid and free. There are so many creative ways that you can make the player feel engaged even though all they’re doing is navigating through menus. I’ve included some of my favorite game UI/UX talks that really influenced the way I think about games. I hope that you enjoy them!

David Candland UI UX GDC Talk

This is a talk by David Candland, who worked on games like Halo and Destiny (which to me has one of the best user interfaces of any game out there). I love the way that he explains the design decisions behind Destiny’s interface because it helped me to understand how you make a game interface feel easy to use yet integrated into the player’s routine. Destiny can also be quite daunting for new players due to the sheer amount of content in the game. I loved how Candland explains how you make large games like Destiny inviting to both veteran and new players.

Live UX UI Game Design with Nick Slough & Ian Wall

This is a VERY LONG but VERY INFORMATIVE three-part series by Nick Slough and Ian Wall who worked on Diablo III and Heroes of the Storm. In this series, Slough and Wall walk through how they create an interface while answering questions about the Game Industry. They create a fictional game called “Gobstoppers” to walk you through how interfaces are created in-depth in a step-by-step process. This is a really good series for someone who wants to get into Game UI/UX but is unsure what exactly that entails or even where to get started.

Inventory Design UX

There’s a series of videos that I love by Design Doc explaining how video games are made. This is one of my favorite videos in that series that delves into Inventory UX. Through giving lots of examples of game inventories and their history, it helped to give me a clear idea of how you build an inventory that’s specific to each game. Something that I think is really funny is that my favorite game, Dragon Quest XI, has probably one of the worst inventories in my opinion. It absolutely killed me to use every time I needed to forge new armor.

100 Days of UI Design Challenge

I love the idea of gamifying design practice. This is a really fun series of challenges that aspiring designers can do to get a better understanding of UI/UX. Each weekday, DailyUI will email you a new prompt. This is a really cool challenge to me because some of the prompts really helped me to stretch my design muscles. They don’t expect you to go the full 100 days without breaks though, they give you weekends off!

Dribble Weekly Warmup

The Dribble Weekly Warmup is a cool place to not only design your own version of the prompt but also get inspiration from other designers who are doing the same thing! There are so many different ways to create their prompts, seeing what other designers do with it helps me to see how I could do better with my own designs.

Thank you so much for reading!! Wishing good luck to all of you in your design journey (but especially those of you who are interested in games)!

Love,

Kat

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Northeastern University’s student-led design studio. https://neu.edu/scout