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  • Writer's pictureJason

Why UI?

Updated: Nov 18, 2020

Sushi Go Party on a computer (TOP) / iOS (BOTTOM)

A game isn’t complete without players. The place where the player and the game meet is the User Interface (UI). In a real life, tabletop game, your choices, opportunities and information are presented to you in cardboard, wood and plastic. You intuitively understand that coins are money and meeples are workers. How approachable the information and game play are is part of a title’s success. When translating board games to an online platform, there are three layers of the User Interface. The device (PC, phone, tablet), the platform (Sovranti) and the game itself. It’s our job to get these three things to fit together as seamlessly as possible so that you can connect with the fun and your friends.

During Beta testing, we’ve collected a lot of feedback from players and fans. Our UI update, scheduled for later this year, puts those insights to work. For the next couple of months, in the development blog, we’ll dive into the issues specific to developing a User Interface for online board gaming. Hopefully, this will give you a window into our thought process and you can inspire us to go even further.

iOS Planet Unknown (TOP) / iOS Hearts (BOTTOM)

Screen size and user attention are finite resources. Since Sovranti can be played on almost any current device (iOS, Android, or PC/Mac) and we encourage folks with all those technologies to play together, we’ve taken on the additional effort of designing a user experience which is consistent while still feeling natural to users of each. Add the complexities of Rules Enforcement for individual games and now any solutions we create must work seamlessly for a multitude of situations. A button is no longer just a button; it is a promise that what you think should happen will happen no matter what game you’re playing on the platform and no matter what device you’re playing on.

When the UI gets in the way, it's as disruptive as a cat jumping on the table in real life. For any online experience, surprising the user with an unexpected result or dumping too much information on them is an unwanted distraction. Our topic next blog is information overload and we’ll talk about streamlining player and game info


Release Updates

Publisher: Adam's Apple Games

Sovranti Developer: Paul

Paul has been working on refinements based on player feedback.

New Planet Unknown Table Layout

Things to look forward to:

  • Items put on the board such as meteors and lifepods, no longer appear out of nowhere. They have piles in the center of the table, like in real life.

    • Civ cards appear in front of the player when they are picking them

    • On the game ending turn, water tiles picked by a player who can’t place a tile will no longer boost water tech.

    • The scoring animation shows zero when a player didn’t achieve a goal card

    • When the Space Station is turning, players see their tiles highlighted. When rotation stops tiles are highlighted in green.

    • Locations of items on the table have been refined

    • Two-Player mode

Publisher: Gamewright

Sovranti Developer: Eric

Soy Sauce Pawns

Eric: “I’ve really enjoyed working on this game because it had many challenges but also various creative opportunities. To name a few that I’ve been especially interested in along the way: Menu selection process, Shuffle/Deal animation, System for laying out ‘taken’ cards in a nice way and Scoring animation.”

Recently, Eric has finished working on simplifying the Special Order confirm steps, adjusting the player pawn soy sauce bottle to have a wood texture.

Things to look forward to:

  • Game Testing Wrap Up

    • Card dealing animation from the top of the deck

Publisher: Fight in a Box

Sovranti Developer: Chuck

Backup Dancer Cool Effects

Chuck has been working on polishing the Hedgehog Dance Party experience. Specifically, he has added effects when awarded a backup dancer, modified the scoring and dealing the cards to players instead of them just appearing.

Things to look forward to:

  • Cool backup dancer effects

    • Dealing from the deck


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