23 July 2016 - 23:51

Riot's New Spectator HUD Causes Mixed Reactions

Riot showcased an all new heads up display for their broadcasts, and it was meet with some criticism.
Dot Esports

In a post at lolesports.com, Riot Games debuted the new heads up display for competitive matches. The new look has not yet been pushed out, but Riot showcased what they have been working on in a week seven match between Counter Logic Gaming and Immortals. They asked for the viewers to take a look at the new HUD, and give their thoughts on where improvements could be made. The reactions, unfortunately for Riot, were mostly negative as the new HUD really strayed away from the traditional and current HUD.

In the post, Riot stated their goals with the introduction of this new HUD, saying that they were looking to “get rid of the clutter and optimize for viewing the action.” In order to do that, they said they have “...rethought the layout and have cut down and consolidated the elements on the screen.”

Riot also wanted viewers to “... more quickly and easily understand the state of the game, going on to add that “At the moment, it's not always easy to follow stats and info during a pro match.”

Riot stressed that this is still very much a work in progress, and are looking for insight from the public on where they can improve. At this time, there is currently no set date for when this new HUD will be introduced in live matches.

For those unable to watch the video linked above, here is a quick screenshot of the new HUD in action:


As you can see, the traditional champion stats on the bottom has now been trimmed down and moved to sit vertically on the left side of the screen, with item builds positioned like they are in-game to show three items on the top row and another three on the bottom. The usual things, such as summoner spells, health and KDA, are still visible.

One new feature is the number in between the two champions. For example, we can look at the matchup between Gragas and Rek’Sai. We can see a +1.0k in blue, which means the person on the blue team in this matchup, in this case Rek’Sai, has a 1.0k gold advantage over the enemy jungler.

The new champion scoreboard has been the target of most of the negative comments, saying that it feels “alien” as one person put it, to have the board on the left side of the screen. Other people also called the stats now “...extremely distracting,” as well as “... super weird and awkward.”

The scoreboard on the top was also trimmed down, and is now much more thin, and takes up less real estate on the screen, as was Riot’s intentions with the new HUD. The trade off there is it is now for some people, including myself, difficult to understand the information in the box. With people touching on how hard it is to quickly glance and tell the difference between kills and towers taken.

One other major change is the removal of player cams from the stream, which was met by much criticism. When this change came up in the discussions, a Riot employee responded by saying the following: “We think that player cams are great and we plan to work with broadcast to bring them on to show player reactions when necessary. Ultimately though, in the interests of maximizing the amount of space available to watch game play, we decided to pull player cams as a permanent HUD element.” One person replied to this by saying “I’m fine with whatever they do, just not removing the player cams.”

There are some people, the minority, who say they like the changes, and refreshes the game for them. Whether or not people will adjust to this new HUD is yet to be seen, but I can tell you that it has grown on me since I first saw it. It will take time to get used to the champions on the left, if that is where they remain and Riot does not adjust it back to the bottom. Like they said, it is a work in progress, so things will likely change.

Finally, here is a screenshot of how the HUD folds down during teamfights to showcase more of the action. Everything stays the same for the most part, but the champion scoreboard collapses to show just summoner spells, HP, and that green dot, which is the player’s ultimates. This, of course, is combined with the usual zoom out that occurs when a large fight begins:


What are your thoughts on the HUD? Let us know by tweeting us @GAMURScom, or leaving a reply below.

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