Where do you put a health bar? It’s a simple question with many answers, but the reasons for those answers are what really interest me.
What are we saying by putting a HP bar at the top; putting it at the bottom, vertical or horizontal? What does its size convey, does a large bar convey importance at the cost of a more cartoonish feel?
The cardinal directions offer associations of meaning that architects recognize and utilize. So I wish to similarly ask, “What are the associations in UI position?”, and extending onto other things, like a shop, or other meters, what are they for those, is it the same, or is it different?
What I like to think about when I am making a Ui is how to make it easily accessible to players. I like the bars to be together, and want everything to be compact but not too compact. For example, if you are playing a very fast paced combat game, you do not want to used up valuable time to look around for the bars around the screen
It completely differs depending on the game play and device. Some games will put it in the bottom/top center of the screen while others will put it in corners, usually left. In many FPS games like Borderlands 2, 3, Payday 2, the left side of the HUD is reserved for health and other stats. In COD mobile, it’s in the center bottom because the bottom left is reserved for quick item access and movement. One should do research on the UX regarding the game you’re designing to make such decisions.