We’ve talked a lot in the past about the development of Sunless Sea and what a learning curve it was for all of us. We were new to Unity development and had to make informed decisions quickly to keep the project moving.
Our approach to the UI, and in particular the size of the font, was one of these decisions – and one that we’ve reviewed since launch. We were limited by Unity’s text handling capabilities, but Unity has seen an impressive amount of improvement and is a very different beast from the one we started developing Sunless Sea with back in July 2013.
Unity 5 includes a new UI system, so we’ve moved the whole game to Unity 5. (The changes this enables us to make will roll out to everyone who owns Sunless Sea, not just Zubmariner.)
For a game with as much UI up on screen as ours, it was no mean feat. We’ve had to make a few concessions here and there to port it across, but we think it’s more than made up for by the opportunities it presented to streamline certain aspects of the UI and introduce some handy new features.
By far the biggest improvement is the new ability to set the UI and font size. You can change these both independantly. Here’s an example of the default UI scale on a 2560 x 1440 display:
Urgh! That’s pretty bad. This caused some people to switch the resolution down, resulting in a proportionally larger UI, but poor resolution text and graphics. Now, you can just up the scale of the UI, like so:
This gives people with high resoution displays the option to scale up the entire UI to fit their larger screen real estate. However, we also wanted to allow people to keep the current UI size, but increase the scale of the text to make it more comfortable to read:
There are also a bunch of small improvements we’ve been able to make:
More control over the appearance of the font in tooltips
Interactive entries within the log messages
Better price signalling on the shop tabs
There will probably be dozens of little changes that you will notice when playing the game. We’ve tried to make sure that we’ve maintained the shape and structure of the old UI while still taking advantage of the new Unity UI system.
We hope this will help many players who’ve struggled to enjoy all of our lovely text on their screens!