September – October 2017
Role: UX/UI Designer, Interaction Designer
Time Frame: 2 Months
Platform: Samsung Gear VR, Daydream
Hidden Fortune is a Adventure Puzzle game that was released across three VR platforms. Hidden Fortune: Outcast Cove and Shanty Seas were released for the Gear VR and Daydream, and Hidden Fortune: Unexplored was released from the HTC Focus.
After joining Archiact’s mobile team shortly after Chapter One: Outcast Cove was released, I was tasked with improving the game’s user experience for the Mystic Mastery Update, and continued improving the game through the releases of Shanty Seas and Unexplored.
Main Menu “Airship” Upgrade
The Airship, while functional, didn’t fully take advantage of the capabilities of VR. Because the world of Hidden Fortune is so interesting and colourful, the Episode Select menu had a tendency to blend into its environment. This became a pain point for many users, as they began the experience unsure how to proceed.
My initial sketches attempted to keep the menu mostly 2D and was reminiscent of a pop-up book. Ultimately, I wanted to push the design to fit the world better. My second pass was still screen heavy, but reacted in three dimensions to the user input.
I also played with the idea of an alchemy-style table with magic orbs in the scene, giving a preview of the episodes within as something “tangible” for the user to interact with. I modelled the menu Maya, and then brought it into Unity for the Engineers to prototype.
Final Chapter Select Screen
Magic Bag & Quest Flow Upgrade
The user’s HUD, like most UI in Hidden Fortune, also consisted of 2D sprites. Through testing we discovered users struggled to understand how to collect objects, as placing them into cards felt unintuitive.
Like the main menu, I attempted a simple 2D redesign. Flattening the models and placing them within a simpler, photo-like background helped; however, placing objects into photos still lacked context.
For most users, the hardest part of collecting the objects was understanding where to place them. To remedy this, I proposed place a basket or bag under the photos, which would be provided by the characters during quests. Giving the context of collecting “into” something helped users during testing, as it felt familiar and similar to real life.
Diegetic Magic Bag HUD
I redesigned the card UI to look like polaroids, which allowed us to place helpful descriptive information for the objects. With the help of our 3D Artist, Sarah, we implemented the final in-quest HUD UI.