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Need some feedback on my HUD design

Sorry guys, I wasn’t sure where to put this, so if it’s the wrong section please let me know.

Anyway. I have been struggling coming up with a HUD design, and am currently stuck between two options that both have their advantages and disadvantages.

First things first; the game’s presentation is supposed to feel like the player is reading a book of kinds. That includes fade-outs where the screen becomes paper, screen transitions that consist out of a flipping page, and so on. The idea is that the world the player sees is the book’s words visualized. The HUD is the only thing bothering me in this. So I have created two mockups;

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  1. “Part of the Page”; where everything is part of the page and to visualize a menu or HUD item, I simply “fade out” a part of the screen that the player sees to reveal more of the paper. Advantages are that, in theory, it feels more in tune with the whole page approach, but the disadvantages are customization as well as some problems I have been running into with animations.

  2. “Scrapbook”; where instead of fading out, I simply put menu elements over the page, with the elements essentially being “notes” of abstract things such as the health bar. Like the reader putting some notes down. Advantages are that it is easier to customize and add to it (and previous animation problems could be dodged), but the disadvantage is that I am not sure whether this fits with the whole book aesthetic.

While the visual design is not final yet, I want to see what direction people think I should go with.