A tricky subject that is more about problem solving than necessarily being artistically clever. One of the big UI problems in this type of game is time; how much time does it take you to perform certain tasks. Inventory management, looting, medical treatment, checking item statuses...the longer these things take the worse the UI feels no matter how pretty it is. To address this issue we have focused on a simple layout to reduce item drag distance; the amount of screen space you have to cover when moving an item from one place to another. Certain things will always have longer drag distances such as looting other players and manually picking up ground items but actions within your own inventory including managing space, consuming food/water, moving ammo, interacting with weapons, performing medical actions, and crafting items are all contained within a clearly legible and connected UI design. Our initial mockup design evolved from a more vertical, full screen layout to one that is more efficient and compact as you can see below. This design will go through testing to make sure the goal of minimizing the amount of time necessary for the core, repetitive actions is achieved.
Much like UI, practicality wins out over cleverness here, especially in a completely non-linear game genre. Sound design needs be helpful to the player first and foremost with events and cues that are valuable to both their education and their survival. Audio cues for health states, PvE related dangers, task completions, and item interaction all serve a very real utilitarian purpose in keeping the player connected to the environment. Second to that is subtle ambiences and musical pieces sprinkled throughout gameplay to lend a sense of mood to each unique area of the map, taking care to not interfere with important information such as footsteps and gunshots.
Environmental audio is equally important to keeping the player connected both in terms of variety and implementation. Proper environmental occlusion based on location (indoors, outdoors, underground) and biome specific environmental sounds and effects are all essential and sometimes overlooked/undervalued elements of creating an engaging experience. We are committed to making the Breaking Point world aurally engaging and functional in all the ways that make for an experience that simply feels GOOD.