Planner

tf028876012.xlsx-1

Above you can find the planner I created at the begining of the Assignment, for some reason the schedual doesn’t work so i’m unable to change the time graph of when things were started.

The column, ‘PLAN START Which day started’ Was when I had planned to start.

The column ‘PLAN DURATION Amount of days’ was how long I planned on doing the work

The column ‘ACTUAL START Which day started’ was when I actually started it

The column ‘ACTUAL DURATION Amount of days’ was how long I actually spent on the work.

As can be seen in the planner it took a lot longer than I’d expected for some piece of work to be finished however for some it took less time, this was becuase they were easier tasks that I could do quicker.

 

HUD evaluation

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After completing the HUD I conclude that the video game HUD I created is pretty good.

It may be hard to understand which part of the HUD is which and which part I’m referring to at points part so for reference:

dfh This is the checkpoint I created.
ghdgThis is the health gauge I created along with the logo of the character the player is playing as.
hjgThis is the fuel gauge (left) and the speedometer.
uyu.pngThis is the start lights.
gfh This is the map with the player’s exact place on the map as well as the checkpoint, below it is the lap placement.

htd This is the players placing in the race.
hgjgThis is the way finder.

The general layout of the HUD at the bottom is kept even, creating symmetry between the two halves; this is more visually appealing than if I had the halves be different shapes or in different positions. However, this isn’t the same for the top of the page, where there is a larger amount of screen covered up on the right than the left, with the number placement being the only element on the left side compared to the map and lap number on the right, in hindsight it would have been better if I put the lap number underneath the number placement so there was some form of equality in how the HUD is divided.

hgf
Above I’ve created a basic diagram using a slightly earlier version of the HUD that shows what I mean, the bottom row have almost identical amounts of space taken up by HUD as well as the HUD being kept mostly out of the way of the screen, meaning that it’s not an obstruction to the player. In comparison on the top row the map takes up almost its entire square while the number placement in the left box is very small and is kept in the corner.

Having such an unbalance creates asymmetry and while asymmetry can be an effective design method to draw attention to certain places or to simply create diverse designs, such a large difference can seem jarring to some, however this is more based on different opinions on what makes design good and appealing since many real games follow this design pattern of having a moderately big map in one corner while the other corner not being taken up by much. To add onto this, while I personally believe asymmetry detracts from the design, in some ways I can see it helping, I mentioned earlier how asymmetry can create diverse designs which is true, if I had had both the top and bottom parts of the HUD design be symmetrical it may have not been as interesting and could have seemed fairly plain and even boring depending on how I made the elements look, having asymmetry also helped attract the viewers’ attention to the top of the screen more naturally since it stuck out a lot more.

rule of thrids

Applying the rule of thirds to my HUD design reveals that my way finder and start lights weren’t centred which, while wouldn’t have a disastrous effect, could be noticeable to some more observant viewers, centring the HUD more is something else I would do if I could go back and change something. The rule of thirds also shows that the health gauge, character logos, speedometer, fuel gauge and map all fit mostly into boxes, while most designs would encourage trying to put important elements of a design on the intersections of the rule of thirds, in a game it is important for the player to see the screen so it would be very hard to have all the HUD fit into the intersections  so having the HUD be able to fit into the squares seems good for the type of design driving games have to follow since it’s still in places the human eye will naturally fall to.

I personally like the colour scheme I used for my HUD, it is fairly simple but I feel I was able to use it to my advantage, by using a basic three colour based scheme my design wasn’t overbearing and too saturated for the player to look at but the colours I used, which were light blue, dark blue and yellow, work well off of each other, with yellow and dark being able to contrast each other and light blue working as a good medium between the two. It was important to me that the colours held the connotation with the future and futuristic technology, I did this by using the colour blue which has been used numerous times through other media as a futuristic colour meaning that the connotation has already been put in place, making it easier to give my game HUD the image of a fturistic based game.

However, breaking away from the colour scheme, I used the colour red for the checkpoints, this was because I wished for it to standout againt the blue background and since the yellow had already been used fairly close by for the players map tracker it would have blended in with that rather than stand out and obviously be something important to be driven through. The other example of not following the colour scheme is the players logos, which are used in the left corner and to represent the players character on the map. It would have been fairly impossible to create a colour scheme for the HUD which would suit every logo because they use fairly different colours in their design, I personally believe that the logo standing out so much is a good thing as it can remind the player of which character they are playing as, it would have probably been a better idea to use the actual face of the driver rather than their logo as that would have given them a more personal connection to the chracters rather than just a logo however that would have caused a larger clash of colours between the characters colour schemes and the HUD colour scheme.

When I created the wayfinder I wanted it to look like a holographic projection, I think I achieved this goal fairly well, the reason for wanting to go with this design idea was because it would have added to the futuristic theme of the game as well as be a unique design choice, however it would have been better if I had reorganized the arrow slightly so it didn’t look like it had been squashed down while everything else stayed the same.

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Another part of the wayfinder I like is the colour of the arrow, I got a lot of feedback on which colours looked best with the blue hologram, many said they liked the yellow and dark blue but a majority seemed to like the shade of blue I chose for the real way finder, many said it was because because, unlike the other colours it doesn’t stick out too much, while deisgning the way finder I wanted to use the final designs blue, so knowing that other people found it the best colour was a nice affirmation for it, however some people said they felt it should be a bit darker, to stand out more and while I wanted to use the final designs blue I saw where they were coming from with their feedback, if it had been a colour that contrasted more with the rest of the wayfinder the arrow would have stood out more, haivng more of a presence on the screen and, in turn, being more likely to be noticed, however if I had used a colour that contrasted more it could have had the side effect of having too much of a presence on the screen, detracting from the rest of the HUD, as well as possibly the gameplay given that wayfinders move around a lot as they direct the player on where to go. While I wanted the wayfinder to be noticable enough to be looked at by the player, I didn’t want it to become a distraction because of how it contrasted with the surrounding colours so I decided to follow peoples feedback on using a fairly desaturated dark blue.

An example of a HUD element I made that did need to stand out and use contrasting to its advantage was the speedometer numbers as well as the player placement and the lap number, these are fairly important pieces of information to display to the player and the player needs to keep an eye on this information becuase, in terms of the lap number and placement, it can help you win or lose by giving you information on where you are at that point in the race.

Talking about the player placement and lap number brings me onto the next thing I wish to evaulate, the font types, I personally liked the font type I used for the lap number, which was Digital 7 , it helped add to the impression of being technologically advanced, or at least have a focus on technology, an idea linked to the future a lot. However, I don’t like the font type used for the player placement, I feel it doesn’t suite the theme of futuristic technology that the rest of the HUD has, as well as being too small for the rest of the page, meaning it would be hard for the player to read it.

I personally think that the map and checkpoints came out a lot worse than I hoped, the map is fairly plain and doesn’t show much detail besides the map road, while that is good to keep from cluttering up the map and, as a result, confusing the player, it’s a bit plain and boring, especialy when compared to some of the other HUD erlements, like the way finder. The checkpoint I made red to stand out against the blue map, I had originally been planning on using yellow but it would have blended in with the players map tracker too much, usng red meant that the tracker would stand out much more becuase it’s the only example of red being on the HUD.

Sketchbook
I believe that I could have done a lot more with my sketchbook, the reason for this is because, while I had a page talking about colour schemes for the HUD and logos  I never actually applied the HUD or logo colours to the designs I came up with, this was as a result of becoming focused on other parts of the sketchbook such as the actual design of the teams, their cars and the actual HUD designs.

This was a very disappointing and even slightly embarrasing mistake on my part which could have easily caused a lot more trouble down the road when it had come to creating the final logos and HUD, luckily the colour scheme page I had created was enough help to come up with a fairly good final colour scheme but if I had been colouring the logos and HUD designs, along with maybe some variations that show the other colour scheme ideas it would have been much easier.

While not colouring the designs were a bad mistake that, if I could go back and change my sketchbook I would remedy immediatly. I still quite liked what I did in my sketchbook, I liked the colour scheme page I had written as it gave me the chance to think more on specific colours I could use, I also believe that my actual HUD element designs were good and varied, helping me come to a conclusion on which I would use much easier than if I had only done one or two designs each. The work I did on the teams I also liked because of how much I put into it, I looked at a car design, logo designs as well as giving a design for the character the player would play as.

In summary of my work as a whole I felt that I was a lot stronger on the computer work than on my sketchbook, it was extremely disappointing that I left out the colouring of my designs which probably will hold me back from getting a great score for my sketchbook work. However, I still believe I put a lot of thought and work into my sketchbook even without the colouring. My computer work was a lot stronger because I was able to put more detail into it.

Copyright and Sponsers

The PEGI rating system

The pegi rating system is the way that video games in the UK and the rest of Europe are given an age rating. PEGI stands for Pan European Game Information and there are 5 age groups that the games can be placed into. These are:

320  PEGI 3 – The lowest age group and means that the game is suitable for all ages. A game with this rating may have violence in a comedic way, as seen in cartoons such as Tom and Jerry. A restriction on the game is that children shouldn’t be able to relate any characters seen on screen with real people and should be completely fantasy, as well as not having sound or imagery that could scare younger audiences such as jumpscares, gore and graphic nudity and sexual situations. PEGI 3 games must also not include any bad language, this ranges from curse words to words of discrimination or graphic violence.

321  PEGI 7 – PEGI 7 follows the same rules as PEGI 3 except it can show more scary imagery or sounds that could scare children but not too extreme.

322  PEGI 12 – A game given the PEGI 12 rating can have violence of a more graphic nature compared to PEGI 3 AND 7. The graphic violence can be directed at fantasy based characters and/or non graphic violence towards human-looking characters or recognisable animals, since it would be upestting for children to see more life like humans or animals hurt. Videogames that show slightly more graphic nudity would fall in this age category but it can’t become too extreme and must be kept tasteful and a minimum. PEGI 12 games can also have bad language must be mild and must still not be discriminatory or sexual in nature.

323  PEGI 16 – A video game would recive this certificate when the violent or sexual nature became similar in apperance to what would be expected in real life. More extreme bad language including sexual language can now be used. As well as this PEGI 16 games can include the use of tobacco and drugs and the graphic depiction of criminal activities.

324  PEGI 18 – PEGI 18 is the higest classification and means that the game is an adult only game. This certificate is given when the violence reaches a stage where it becomes a graphic depiction of gross violence and/or includes elements of specific types of violence. Gross violence is hard to define but the PEGI rating usually bases it on if the violence is so graphic that the viewer feels a strong sense of revulsion at the sight. PEGI 18’s can show much more graphic nudity and sexual situations as well as discrimination. PEGI 18’S can also be specific with drug and alchol use in game as well as use strong language.

The PEGI rating system can also have descriptors on the game packaging to indicate what is specfically in the game that causes its age rating. There are eight descriptors:

276  – Violence
269  – Bad language
272  – Fear
271  – Drugs
275 – Sexual
270 – Discrimination
273  – Gambling
274  – Online gameplay with other people.

The PEGI rating system also has a new type of rating for online based games which don’t have a physical copy, this is called the PEGI OK label.

255  A PEGI OK label indicates that game has been assed according to the PEGI rating system criteria and it has been found that there is nothing in the game that would lead to a higher rating than the standard 3+ category.

To qualify for the PEGI OK label a game can NOT contain any of the following elements:
violence
sexual activity or sexual innuendo
nudity
bad language
gambling
promotion or use of drugs
promotion of alcohol or tobacco
scary scenes
If a game does have these elements then the game will be given the usual rating given to a higher aged game.
The reason the PEGI rating system was put into place was so that younger children would not be bought a game that was inappropriate for their age and it would be morally wrong to allow this to happen with no prevention in place to try and stop it as it would be exposing younger audiences to upsetting and possibly even traumatizing imagery that they shouldn’t view until they’re older.

Copyright in America and UK

UK copyright law follows the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, the legislation that covered what intellectual property rights are and how it is protected in the United Kingdom and the work it applies to.

Copyright in video games works mostly the same as other forms of copyright. A Video game can not be too similar to other video games in terms of mechanics and brands., however, there is still a bit of confusion over intellectual property protection in video game, at least in America. For example, in May 2013, Electronic Arts Studios put out a statement saying it would no longer agree to licensing agreements with gun manufacturers but that it keeps the right to continue using branded guns in their games, they defended this action using the First Amendment, which many argue protects all cases of copyright infringement.

The reason many argue that the First Amendment protects Americans from copyright rules is because the First Amendment stops government officials from stopping freedom of speech and censoring people this means that copyright laws, which exist to protect peoples intellectual property, many say that these rules stop other people who want to use another persons intellectual property, which, in the case of video games is branded objects or logos, some may refer to this as “censoring” people by stopping them from using others copyrighted material.

In the case of EA saying it would no longer agree to licensing agreements for guns, the American Supreme Court held that video games have the same free speech protections as other “expressive works” such as films, books and music.

However, that doesn’t mean video games are completely free to take as much copyrighted imagery and use it as they wish, when one company takes another to court over copyright in their video game, the court can apply a test called the rogers test.

The Rogers test is based on a court case called Rogers v. Grimaldi. The reason this court case happened was because an actress named Ginger Rogers wanted to sue the producers of a film called ‘Ginger and Fred’ for copyright and brand issues, these issues were that the title of the film would confuse movie watchers into believing the film was affiliated with the film. The film was actually about two Italian performers who were nicknamed ‘Ginger’ and ‘Fred’.

While the court was evaluating the defence of the film the court used a balancing test, concluding that copyright laws should be built to include artistic works only to avoid confusion for the consumer which should outweigh the publics demand for free expression. The court concluded that the requirement was that the trademark used would have no artistic relevance to the underlying work or would explicitly mislead as to the source of the work and that the film didn’t contain any indication that Rogers endorsed the film or had a role in producing it, leading to the court dismissing Rogers case.

The rogers test is still used today and is one of the ways a court will judge whether or not a game company will be protected over their use of copyrighted material or not.

Unlike in America, the UK seems to have a defined answer as to where video games are placed in tems of copyright and intelectual property, this could be because we don’t have the first amemdmant in place.

Sponsorship in Racing

Companies use F1 championships to build their brand as well as advertise their product to a large amount of viewers. Companies will pay a lot of money to make their brand recognisable on Formula One cars.

Formula One teams get around 80% of their total income from sponsorship with the remaining 15% coming from TV revenue and the winning money, the fact that a team gets so much money from sponsorship is a testament to why sponsorships are seen as so important to Formula One.

Some companies that will use racing tournaments as a way to advertise themselves are PlayStation (Sony), Red Bull, Saudia Airlines and British American Tobacco (Lucky Strike).

 

Bibliography:
Formula1.sporting99.com. (2017). F1 Sponsors – Formula 1 Sponsors. [online] Available at: http://formula1.sporting99.com/about-formula-one/sponsors.html [Accessed 5 Feb. 2017].
Jacqueline K. S. Lee and Meredith M. Wilkes, Inta.org. (2017). Litigating the First Amendment Defence in the Video Game Context. [online] Available at: http://www.inta.org/INTABulletin/Pages/LitigatingtheFirstAmendmentDefenseintheVideoGameContext.aspx [Accessed 5 Feb. 2017].
Sean Kane, Law360.com. (2017). Case Law On Trademark Use In Video Games Is Evolving – Law360. [online] Available at: https://www.law360.com/articles/469694/case-law-on-trademark-use-in-video-games-is-evolving [Accessed 5 Feb. 2017].

 

HUD and Icon moodboard

 

car-dashboard-moodboardSeen above is the mood board I created which was based on car dashboards and HUDs. The word dashboard, in terms of a car means, a panel extending across the interior of a vehicle (as an automobile) below the windshield and usually containing instruments and controls; this of course includes the speedometer, fuel gauge and many other features that car racing games commonly use.

Since my driving game HUD will be based in the future I tried to theme the moodboard around more futuristic looking dashboards, this included how the icons glowed and the colour choices the design used, since blues are commonly known and synonymous for a futuristic colour, this is because many modern interfaces for electronic devices are blue coloured as well as pieces of media suck as “Tron” which made colours such as blue equal future technology.

I also tried to find dashboard features that looked futuristic in terms of the shapes used, using uneven shapes with bits coming out of it, as seen in the picture in the top right of the moodboard is also synonymous for futuristic simply because it’s used a lot in already established media, whether it be games or movies.

However, while I feel it’s important to look at car dashboards that can be a good inspiration for my games version, meaning how they look futuristic, it’s also important to look at real modern car dashboards that already exist, this is because while I want my game to have the identity of a futuristic racing game to suit the want for electric cars, the HUD should also be recognizable as using modern car dashboard elements so that the user knows which part of the HUD is what.

car-dashboard-icons

I also looked at the specific icons that are used on a car dashboard, the reason for this is the same as why I looked at real modern car dashboards, so that the identity of my racing game won’t stray too far away from what is commonly seen as necessities of a car dashboard.

The reason we need the car symbols is because each represent a different aspect of the car, such as the fuel and how much is still in the tank, whether or not someone is wearing their seatbelts, if the cars indicators are on or not or if something is wrong with the engine. These are all safety precautions that keep someone in the car from being hurt or in danger, these precautions and warning s are also to keep those outside of the car safe, for example, if the car didn’t show the driver if someone in the car had a seatbelt on or off the driver could assume everyone’s seatbelt is on and then begin driving, if the driver had a car accident the person who didn’t have a seatbelt on would be twice as likely to get killed. It’s important to note that drivers and passengers who don’t wear a seatbelt are breaking the law and will be fined if caught.

Why am I saying this? Well, the reason for that is that part of creating a design for a dashboard is to take in to consideration the legal and ethical implications of what you’re creating, if the design of a car failed to show one of the important icons it needs to, such as engine failure or something that’s seemingly as minuscule as someone not wearing a seatbelt can endanger lives both inside and outside the car, which is both morally and legally wrong and will get the company that created the car in serious trouble.

I believe that this line of thought should be carried over to car racing games, that may sound ridiculous because of the fact that no real people will get hurt if a game HUD doesn’t include all the icons real cars would have which I agree with, not only on that but I think it would also, in terms of design, be impractical at best and unnecessarily annoying and a downright ugly design at worst because it would take up a lot of the screen. However what must be taken into consideration is the fact that not all players of a racing game will be old enough to know what the icons on a car is and if a designer of a game HUD did use real life car icons in their game they would be educating younger game players on what the icons looked like and what they represented. It isn’t a legal or moral necessity to have a hundred percent accuracy of a cars dashboard symbols in a game but to be able to educate younger people on basic car symbols so they’ll be able to identify them later in life is, in my opinion ethically correct and can improve a games reputation in the eyes of parents, even though it’s a fairly small detail.

However having a fairly accurate representation of a car dashboard has another good reason to be shown in games which has nothing to do with the ethical implications, this is the creation of immersion for a player. By having a HUD that looks very similar to a real life car dashboard a player can relate the game to something they know of in real life and be more immersed and absorbed into the game compared to a game which doesn’t use familiar features of a car dashboard.

Something interesting to note is how most of the icons will be different colours to the rest of the car dashboard, this is probably because, as stated before, the icons represent important aspects of a car so having them be in different colours to the rest of the dashboard will draw attention to them faster than if they blended in with the rest of the dashboards colour scheme. This is something I should take into consideration when I get to designing and creating my dashboard.

 

Bibliography:
Think.direct.gov.uk. (2017). Seatbelts : THINK! : Roadsafety. [online] Available at: http://think.direct.gov.uk/seat-belts.html [Accessed 20 Feb. 2017].
Think.direct.gov.uk. (2017). Seatbelts : THINK! : Roadsafety. [online] Available at: http://think.direct.gov.uk/seat-belts.html [Accessed 20 Feb. 2017].

Bibliography moodboard of car dashboard:

Royalty Free Stock Photography, Light of mile gauge , Available from: <https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/light-mile-gauge-318214832 > [Accessed: 18 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography, Modern car illuminated dashboard closeup, Available from: < https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/modern-car-illuminated-dashboard-closeup-108187586&gt; [Accessed: 18 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography, Sci fi futuristic user interface HUD. Vector illustration, Available from: < https://www.shutterstock.com/image-vector/sci-fi-futuristic-user-interface-hud-193460531?src=32NHPPjbeI1nTLGTU1zb-w-1-92&gt; [Accessed: 18 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography, Futuristic Speedometer Interface , Available from: < https://www.shutterstock.com/image-vector/futuristic-speedometer-interface-306360464?src=RvXAtbza154N_bWj_XQFqQ-1-0&gt; [Accessed: 18 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography, Modern car instrument dashboard panel or speedometer and full symbol in night time, Available from: < https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/modern-car-instrument-dashboard-panel-speedometer-441914602 > [Accessed: 18 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography, Vector futuristic interface of racing game dashboard, Available from: < https://www.shutterstock.com/image-vector/vector-futuristic-interface-racing-game-dashboard-342712619?src=Mda6O-azRt3GRRanYTtzmw-1-10&gt; [Accessed: 18 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography, Car dashboard modern automobile control illuminated panel speed display vector illustration , Available from: < https://www.shutterstock.com/image-vector/car-dashboard-modern-automobile-control-illuminated-228620182?src=UAwER46lJ-nUliO1tIZvsw-1-2 > [Accessed: 18 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography: transport, business trip, technology and people concept – close up of male hands holding car wheel and driving with volume level icon on board computer screen , Available from: < https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/transport-business-trip-technology-people-concept-507813433?src=cJBcloOvq0GY5D7enXrc_g-1-36 > [Accessed: 18 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography: = Control panel of car, Available from: <https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/control-panel-car-304109330&gt; [Accessed: 18 January 2017]

Bibliography for hud icon moodboard:

Royalty Free Stock Photography, Futuristic style user interface icons for mobile and web applications. UI and HUD vector scalable illustration , Available from: <https://www.shutterstock.com/image-vector/futuristic-style-user-interface-icons-mobile-503038000 > [Accessed: 19 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography, Dashboard icons , Available from: <https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/dashboard-icons-163012100?src=msKCRjasAxrXfeAu5hObsw-1-3&gt; [Accessed: 19 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography, car dashboard panel icons symbols warning light indicators vector set, Available from: https://www.shutterstock.com/image-vector/car-dashboard-panel-icons-symbols-warning-486605611?src=UAwER46lJ-nUliO1tIZvsw-1-10 [Accessed: 19 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography: Dashboard indicator showing fuel half tank, Available from: https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/dashboard-indicator-showing-fuel-half-tank-117276109?src=sEL4eIVzBX6Tvdf9q_QhAQ-1-35 [Accessed: 19 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography: Car dashboard vector icons, Available from: https://www.shutterstock.com/image-vector/car-dashboard-vector-icons-160600160?src=KwyAvH5zJr8GVOY1gRjXNw-1-38 [Accessed: 19 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography: A fuel gauge, speedometer vector illustration, Available from: https://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-images-fuel-gauge-vector-speedometer-illustration-image40025989 [Accessed: 19 January 2017]

Royalty Free Stock Photography: A vector Speedometer illustration design, Available from: https://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photography-vector-speedometer-image26272647 [Accessed: 19 January 2017]