Square sans needs legibility improvements

Eimantas PaškonisEimantas Paškonis Posts: 76
edited July 26 in Type Design Critiques
It's intended for video game UI, where kerning is unavailable; hence such angular letters' design and tabular numbers by default.
I've been fighting with it for a long time now; trying out different global widths, individual widths, trackings, x-heights, optical adjustments, overshoots but something still bugs me. It looks passable if viewed on its own but compare it to a proper text font and it falls apart. This font isn't for textbooks, but still... A fresh pair of eyes might help it.
I want to keep it fairly wide (for a medium width) for that sci-fi feel. I have two masters with currently 4 weights, this is Regular for now.




Comments

  • Vasil StanevVasil Stanev Posts: 212
    edited July 26
    I feel like there are some balance issues. The s for example looks too light and anemic compared to the r, same goes for 2 compared to 1; 5, 6 and 9 need more work IMO. Width of the glyphs is good. v, w and especially x look odd to me, why are there ink traps in a desktop font?
    Descenders could perhaps go a little lower. Got to see it in a computer game to give an actually appropriate opinion. You are using common type designer proofs to check a font that will never be used outside of computer games and UI, hence the issue with comparison.
    Keep in mind straight columns like in k, l look heavier than the column of a same width in a letter like t and the like. They stand out and that's not OK.
    Gaming fonts are one of the types where numbers matter as much or more than letters.
  • Eimantas PaškonisEimantas Paškonis Posts: 76
    edited July 26
    >The s for example looks too light and anemic compared to the r,
    Can see it now.

    >v, w, x – why are there ink traps in a desktop font?
    Those aren't ink traps, they're "crossbars" to allow for more vertical diagonals while maintaining uniform width.

    >straight columns like in k, l look heavier than the column of a same width in a letter like t and the like
    I'm not following. In the file they're the same width. Or do you have rounded letters' sides in mind?
  • I rather like it overall. If you want it to be more readable at text sizes, I'd just loosen the spacing a bit.
  • Vasil StanevVasil Stanev Posts: 212
    edited July 26

    >straight columns like in k, l look heavier than the column of a same width in a letter like t and the like
    I'm not following. In the file they're the same width. Or do you have rounded letters' sides in mind?
    Sometimes the width has to be adjusted, especially for a screen. A p could look lighter than an l or k because of the vertical stroke (column) - the column behaves slightly different although it stands to reason they all should be exactly the same. But they are not always the same. Sometimes you have to optically correct. 
  • Thomas PhinneyThomas Phinney Posts: 1,110
    Agree with Vasil—but more so on heavier weights.

    (The time this becomes really interesting is with E in a bold and relatively monoline sans.)
  • @Vasil Stanev
    It is adjusted for that, I guess not enough?

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