How UI/UX Matters In Gaming: The Sweave Perspective

Leti Arts
Feb 21, 2024

In an era dominated by fast-paced digital entertainment, where attention spans are often fleeting, visual appeal and user experience must be prioritized. 

The interface between the player and the game holds immense significance because the UI/UX of a game can make or break the player’s experience, shaping their journey from the moment they launch the app

Sweave, an African game app renowned for its hypercasual gameplay, has captivated players with its seamless blend of simplicity, aesthetics, and functionality. In an exclusive interview with the mastermind behind Sweave’s UI/UX design, we embark on a journey to uncover the meticulous craftsmanship and creative vision that has propelled this game to acclaim.

Sweave is a hypercasual game that takes inspiration from African patterns and weaves. The game revolves around a ball that moves in a to and fro motion, similar to a weaving shuttle in a loom, and is controlled by the player pressing on the screen. 

The goal of the game is to avoid obstacles that come in the form of African symbols. Sweave showcases 12 different bosses to defeat, more than 10 skins, and over 20 crazy pattern designs that keep players on their toes throughout the game. The game is playable at no cost and its optional powerups and skins are available through an in-app purchase. Sweave furthermore offers seamless cloud saving across multiple devices, providing players with the flexibility to continue their journey from checkpoints. 

According to the developer, Robertson Nortey, Sweave’s UI tries to be as simple as possible while trying to offer the player a wide range of features. Regarding prioritization, “we chose to highlight icons for the following: energy points, spirit points, score multiplier, settings, missions, museum, shop, and leaderboard.”

Since Sweave’s game mechanism aims for a simple yet fun and addictive play, its control scheme ensures intuitive and responsive gameplay. We see this mechanism vividly in the unique weaving motion of the ball. For instance, the developer opted for a gameplay that involves one action ( tap and hold the screen) and he designed a world around this gameplay to ensure that the game feels easy to learn, yet hard to master.

Levels are structured such that the player feels a sense of relaxation in their first gameplay In terms of progression. There are no real challenges for a new player and this was done to reduce the level of frustration the game may pose to players unfamiliar with the genre. “Furthermore, our commitment to player support extends beyond mere gameplay. We integrated comprehensive tutorials directly into the game experience because we understand that navigating challenging levels can sometimes lead to frustration. These tutorials provide players with valuable guidance and tips, empowering them to overcome obstacles and master the game mechanics with confidence.”

However, as players advance, the progression curve tries to blend difficulty with ease to keep them at the edge of their seats when playing and utilizing their powerups. There are regular obstacles that come in the form of symbols and masks dynamically generated based on the skill level of the player to keep things fresh.

For visual feedback and immersion, the game utilizes camera effects, particle effects, and dynamic sound systems to immerse the player in the game world. In Sweave, where gameplay can reach exhilarating speeds, maintaining player immersion without interrupting the action is paramount. To achieve this, the developer implemented a creative solution: mini alerts accompanied by distinct sound effects,  subtle animations, and color changes, seamlessly integrated into the gameplay. These alerts serve as subtle yet effective warnings, alerting players to imminent dangers without disrupting the flow of the game. 

Another fundamental principle of UX that was implemented into Sweave is “Accessibility”. The approach to color-blind accessibility encompassed various strategies like the implementation of color palettes that are universally distinguishable. The developers furthermore used contrasting hues and shades to help players differentiate between game elements effectively. By avoiding reliance on color as the sole means of conveying information, they created a visual environment containing symbols, textures, etc that remains clear and comprehensible for all players.

In Sweave, the integration of social and competitive features, such as leaderboards, serves as a cornerstone of the game’s UI/UX strategy. By strategically incorporating leaderboards—comprising overall, progressive, and competitive metrics—the game not only enhances replay value but also fosters sustained player engagement.

The inclusion of leaderboards within Sweave’s UI/UX framework is again pivotal because it introduces a dynamic element of social interaction, allowing players to measure their progress against friends and rivals. This social connectivity enriches the gaming experience, transforming solitary gameplay into a communal pursuit. Moreover, from a UX perspective, the leaderboard feature serves as a motivational tool, compelling players to strive for continuous improvement and mastery of the game.

From a design standpoint, the leaderboard interface is seamlessly integrated into the game’s layout, ensuring accessibility and visibility without disrupting the overall flow. Clear, intuitive navigation facilitates effortless exploration of leaderboard rankings, empowering players to track their performance with ease. Additionally, real-time updates and notifications keep players informed of their standing, heightening the sense of competition and urgency.

In essence, the inclusion of leaderboards within Sweave’s UI/UX framework not only enhances replayability but also fosters a sense of community and achievement among players. Drawing upon invaluable insights gathered from player interactions, the game designers meticulously crafted the competitive mode to align with the preferences and expectations of their audience. Through surveys, forums, and direct communication channels, the team actively solicited feedback regarding desired features, gameplay dynamics, and overall experience enhancements.

“By placing the player at the center, we’ve not only created a competitive mode that resonates with our community but also fostered a sense of ownership and investment among players. Their feedback has been instrumental in shaping the evolution of Sweave, reaffirming our commitment to delivering a gaming experience that is truly player-centric and continuously evolving.”

“Ensuring optimal performance has been a cornerstone of Sweave’s development journey, driving our team to implement a comprehensive array of techniques aimed at delivering a smooth and immersive gaming experience without compromising device stability or longevity. Sweave is fine-tuned to operate efficiently across a diverse range of devices through meticulous code optimization, resource management, and memory allocation.”

“Additionally, our approach extends beyond mere optimization; we’ve implemented dynamic performance scaling mechanisms that adjust resource usage in real-time based on device capabilities and environmental conditions. This adaptive approach ensures that Sweave maintains peak performance levels without taxing the device excessively, even during extended play sessions.”

“In a few months, we hope to feature multiplayer mode and other new modes, new customization options, new in-game challenges and abilities as well as effects. We also aim to reach a million downloads this year with the game resonating amongst many players across different regions. We hope to get more feedback and grow the game and just keep working on new updates to enhance the game.”

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