I want to highlight how some of the recent changes are extremely detrimental to readability/accessibility, and also to give devs some context for how I (and probably some others) play the game. I will try to stick to objective statements rather than personal preference, though of course some objective statements (e.g., “I can’t read this”) won’t be applicable to everyone. However, I’m not exaggerating when I say that I literally cannot read half the stats in the game since the redesign, and I’ve had to significantly limit play sessions due to eye strain/headaches. I may need to stop playing if no changes are made, which is a bummer, because I do enjoy the game.
- I play almost exclusively on my phone, maybe one foot away from my face.
- I often play in low-light settings, so I use a blue light filter/color adjuster (Twilight) to avoid eye strain. This does wash out the colors a bit, and with the previous card design, everything was very clearly defined and could be taken in at a glance.
- Despite mild color blindness (mostly issues with greens/browns that are close to one another), the only visibility/readability issue I had before the redesign was occasionally having trouble reading a buffed (green) health/armor number if the troop art behind it was a similar color, but that’s it - I don’t have issues distinguishing between gems on the board, for example. Everything else was pretty darn easy to read and parse, which is impressive, given the amount of info being crammed into a very small space.
There are now numerous issues that obfuscate important information, slow down info acquisition, and/or make text effectively illegible. It’s worth noting that some of these issues are less impactful when I’m playing in a well-lit area without the blue light filter, but they still exist even under optimal conditions:
- Text size on almost all numbers is too small. Mana pool and attack/armor/life are very difficult to read, even with optimal color mixing (which is rare).
- Text color makes things even harder to read. White text is usually OK (see below), but very little of the text is ever white (i.e., unbuffed/undamaged attack/armor/life - I’m pretty sure all other text is nonwhite). Troop mana is almost always difficult or impossible to read because it is, AFAIK, always nonwhite text.
- Background color is a huge issue now. The attack value is usually visible (if small), but armor, life, and mana pool are frequently illegible due to the combinations of text and background colors. Even white text, which works fairly well on most background colors, is basically impossible to read on a yellow background. The chiron behind the mana pool is almost entirely translucent, providing very little contrast; due to the colors of mana text, however, I’m not sure even a fully opaque chiron (like the one behind the attack value) would be easily legible.
- The main contributor to background color issues is the color identity gradient banner behind armor and life. Not only do these colors frequently make the stats difficult or impossible to read, but they are mostly ineffective at conveying what “colors” the troop is in the first place. Green/brown and red/brown are difficult to distinguish, and the gradient of any troop with more than two colors is too muddy to parse.
- The new Trait indicator is effectively useless. This is slightly more subjective than my other points, but I think it’s reasonable to argue that the number of unlocked traits on a troop is almost never relevant, because almost all troops you fight against have all traits unlocked, so the generic three pips give you no useful info. (Circumstances in which troops aren’t fully traited do exist, of course, but again this is usually the case for ALL troops on a team, and mostly occur at very low difficulty levels where trait info is more or less irrelevant).
- Related to the Trait indicator, the new Stun indicator is not easy to notice and is mostly obfuscated by the “Spell Ready” indicator.
- In addition to Stun, other status effects on troops (cursed, enchanted, etc.) are less distinct/obvious now. I’m not sure what exactly has changed, but I suspect the “Spell Ready” cyan arrow and bar are negatively affecting readability.
- Base and current rarity is no longer visible during battles without clicking on a troop and clicking over to the central “tab.” This is annoying, but not a huge deal. It’s actually more frustrating in the Troops & Teams menu, but that could be more of a personal preference.
- The new “Spell Ready” indicator is a bit overwhelming for my personal taste, but the only accessibility/readability issue it seems to create is obscuring the Trait pips, which are basically useless (see above).
- Finally (and least importantly), the new Delve map UI is much harder to parse, IMO. The pips are much harder to visually distinguish than Roman numerals, especially when the nodes are in grayscale.
Please, please revert (or provide an option to toggle between) the UI changes to troop cards and status indicators in battle. They are making it difficult, frustrating, and occasionally painful to play the game, and I’m fortunate enough to have relatively few health/accessibility concerns. This is a big problem for me, and as far as I can tell, it’s an even bigger issue for many other players.