1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Crop driver names, rework the fonts?

Discussion in 'Automobilista 2 - General Discussion' started by sgsfabiano, Jul 4, 2021.

  1. sgsfabiano

    sgsfabiano Well-Known Member Reiza Backer

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2019
    Messages:
    1,436
    Likes Received:
    859
    upload_2021-7-4_19-24-8.png

    This is from a livestreamed league race going on. Imho this force to fit behaviour is very bad design for this sort of widget. Notice how there are many different sizes for the font, it looks bad.

    Another minor issue with the UI, in special this widget, is the non aligned numbers for the lap times.

    Overall I don't really like this font. Good old Arial would look better for the names, and some evenly spaced font, such as Courier New for example, would do better for the laptimes and lists prone to be aligned.

    My two cents.
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
  2. F1 Hero

    F1 Hero Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2020
    Messages:
    176
    Likes Received:
    98
    Yes, and in the chat box this font looks bad too.
     
  3. Tiago Ribeiro

    Tiago Ribeiro You must first finish

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2021
    Messages:
    128
    Likes Received:
    117
    Hopefully the upcoming profile section will let us customize how we want our names displayed (as well as choosing 3-letter initials)…
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  4. chonk

    chonk Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2021
    Messages:
    216
    Likes Received:
    107
    A change of font throughout the UI wouldn't hurt at all. Also would be nice to be able to see the manufacturer as well as the class. Maybe the tag could switch between the two?
     
    • Like Like x 1
  5. Roar McRipHelmet

    Roar McRipHelmet Well-Known Member Reiza Backer

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2020
    Messages:
    932
    Likes Received:
    745
    Monospace for numbers that are vertically aligned would be great, I totally agree.
    The force-to-fit is indeed ugly and can be difficult to read. Using 3-letter initials like in Project Cars 2 is a good idea.

    When it comes to swapping the overall font with another (e.g. Arial), it's an interesting discussion to have, but apart from the monospace and force-to-fit arguments above, I haven't seen any arguments that weigh pros/cons of the current font up against pros/cons of an alternative.

    I've read posts on this forum that state that the font is too heavy (bold) and needs to be replaced with a lighter weight. I suspect that one reason for choosing such a heavy weight was for the font to be legible on old VR headsets such as the original HTC Vive which has a significant screendoor effect which makes it very difficult to read text unless it is sufficiently large and/or bold. A replacement font would have to provide the same degree of legibility in VR, or a business decision needs to be made that it's okay to drop support for VR headsets that have significant screendoor effect.

    I've also read posts that state that the font is ugly. Just a guess: Is it the rounded humanist style (perhaps reminding people of Comic Sans and Calibri) that is turning people off? What would be a better style, and why? How well would that alternative fit the technical requirements?

    Beauty and functionality are often opposing forces in design. But there are examples that have both: Frutiger is well-known in the industry as a font that is both legible and elegant. But Frutiger is made to look good on print and signage, not on computer monitors. There is a plethora of beautiful and legible fonts made for computer monitors, but many of these rely on hinting techniques such as ClearType in order to be legible in small sizes, and that won't work in VR… so compromises must be made.

    To summarize: Monospace for vertically aligned numbers and finding solutions that prevent the text from shrinking irregularly are indeed good suggestions. Swapping the overall font is on the other hand a much more complex issue, but I welcome a substantive discussion on the topic that takes the technical requirements into account and not just the stylistic arguments.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  6. F1Aussie

    F1Aussie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2016
    Messages:
    1,622
    Likes Received:
    439
    The font comes across as low res too, it is blurry, would be nice if it could be sharpened up. Would be neat to have data available on the offline leaderboard next to driver names such as how many pitstops they have made, what tyre they are on, best laptime etc, even if it changes over every few seconds to view the next so the leaderboard is not too cluttered when driving.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Roar McRipHelmet

    Roar McRipHelmet Well-Known Member Reiza Backer

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2020
    Messages:
    932
    Likes Received:
    745
    I see your point. By modern standards, the font does look blurry. Getting sharp fonts on rasterized displays is usually a combination of good font hinting and using subpixel rendering. You need both, or else the result will look blurry.

    Font hinting is a mostly manual design process that is embedded into the font itself, and if not done correctly, the font will look a bit uneven - think back to the days of non-bitmap TrueType fonts rendered in small sizes without antialiasing. To me this doesn't seem to be the case here.

    Subpixel rendering is usually done by the operating system, since it depends on knowing specifics of the display hardware such subpixel density and arrangement. Subpixel rendering in VR does not exist, to my knowledge? And how about on console? (given that the Madness Engine is written for console as well) So it would make sense if the Madness Engine is using its own font rendering method in order for the rendering to be platform agnostic.

    Therefore, I suspect that the reason why the font comes across as low-resolution and blurry is because the Madness Engine is using its own font rendering method that does not utilize subpixel rendering and/or is not supporting high pixel-per-inch displays. In this case, switching to a different font will not help, unless sacrifices are made or if there is some technical solution that I've overlooked.

    Are there examples of other products that are platform agnostic (PC+VR+Console) and where font rendering is less blurry than in AMS2?
     
  8. chonk

    chonk Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2021
    Messages:
    216
    Likes Received:
    107
    I'm definitely not qualified to speak about font selection from a technical perspective, only personally and from an aesthetic point of view. I do think there are 'better/cleaner' viable options though. I totally get what you're saying about people likening the current font to comic sans etc. I also get what you mean about maybe the choice being made on the basis of supporting older/lower res headsets but, if we take PC2 as the example again the font choices there were cleaner and were as far as I can remember totally legible on something like the Rift. Of course you don't want people to have to struggle in an Elite Dangerous kind of way but the in game UI isn't nearly as text heavy. Except maybe the tips section in the setup menu, which I feel is kind of illegible with the current font.

    Long story short, its not the end of the world, low on the list of priorities but, maybe a change in the future wouldn't be the worst thing.
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Optimistic Optimistic x 1
  9. bobbie424242

    bobbie424242 Well-Known Member Reiza Backer

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2017
    Messages:
    762
    Likes Received:
    374
    Font could really see a change with something more modern which would also improve readability and information density.
    And it would be a way to make the UI somewhat look new, for (supposedly) little effort.
    Please Reiza, change that font ! UI aesthetics count too for overall perceived quality and first impressions.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. F1Aussie

    F1Aussie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2016
    Messages:
    1,622
    Likes Received:
    439
    Jesus, I barely understood a word of that, was that in English? Lol.
    You know way more than I do!
    All I know is it could look better, sometimes it almost seems like it has been smeared with Vaseline.
     
  11. bobbie424242

    bobbie424242 Well-Known Member Reiza Backer

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2017
    Messages:
    762
    Likes Received:
    374
    It is likely a bitmap font. Hence the need for several sizes (for it being sharp at different resolutions) or using a vector TTF font (not easy if the engine does not support it).
     
    • Like Like x 1
  12. sgsfabiano

    sgsfabiano Well-Known Member Reiza Backer

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2019
    Messages:
    1,436
    Likes Received:
    859
    Now that you mentioned it, the font does give that feeling of an ironed out Comic Sans. Gives me a non professional/serious vibe, feels like something you would use in a child's focused game/book with colorful pirate dinosaurs.

    Beauty is subjective, so when I say the font is ugly my criteria might not fit everyone's. Without actually going for the trial & error, it is hard to point out what would look good on the game. I would start with the simplest: Arial. Then I would see if Roboto would fit nicely (not even need Roboto Mono for the alignable lap times).

    Idk, I prefer the cleaner fonts than the current roundy chubby:
    upload_2021-7-5_9-10-24.png
     

Share This Page