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Much like a heart is used a lot for health and lives in old retro games...

minecraft heart

...what would be a good icon to use for Energy, Mana and/or Magic points?

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closed as primarily opinion-based by Anko, Byte56 Jan 24 '14 at 17:05

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

A purple-blue flame. – badp Jul 3 '12 at 16:52
Well, a meter [██████▒▒▒]? – bobobobo Jan 23 '14 at 21:11
up vote 20 down vote accepted

I don't know of any particular icons, but I think the most important thing to keep in mind is that players associate the colour blue with magic. Thus, I don't think the icon actually matters, as long as you follow the basic convention of red for health, blue for magic and green (or the less-used yellow) for a third metric (usually stamina, but can be other things like in the case of Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem where green stood for sanity).

Typical shapes include orbs, crystals, potions or runes.

Hope this helps!

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Green for Zelda (LttP, OoT, MM and WW)! – Jeff Jul 3 '12 at 20:15
Using blue for magic is not a hard and fast rule, it very much depends on the color scheme of the game. Generally you can use any color as long as it makes sense in the given context and you're consistent. – Alex Ames Jul 3 '12 at 22:13
@AlexAmes While I agree with you, the user asked for "a good icon to use for Energy, Mana and/or Magic points". Since this can be debated at length, I believe it is better to answer generically. In that case, my answer simply points out what seems to be the convention. I acknowledge that there is no "rule", per se, but there seems to be an unspoken convention nonetheless :) – Jonathan Pitre Jul 4 '12 at 12:42
Giving a different color to the mana than usual might be also a good choice, as it differentiates your game from others. One example of this is Gemcraft (with orange mana-gems, tough its not a retro game). – akaltar Jan 23 '14 at 20:56

Magic and stuff. Orbs, staffs, scepters and green/purples came to my mind. Here's Some of it:

  • A basic orb :

enter image description here

  • Some Zelda style rupee (You could modify it to a suitable color)

enter image description here enter image description here

  • Basic staffs and scepters :

enter image description here enter image description here

  • Some potion :

enter image description here

And also green and purple fire.

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Sources? Licenses? – Jeff Jul 3 '12 at 20:14
@Jeff The Purple Orb's Mine.(Free to Copy). Rest of them from Piq (Creative Commons) – The-Ever-Kid Jul 4 '12 at 11:58

Purple or green stars could work for magic. For energy, maybe some yellow lightning bolts. And for food (mana), you could use any food item and pixelate it. I would be able to give more advice as far as shapes if you could tell me the theme of your game :)

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I would suggest for mana a retro crystal like in the background of this pokemon game:

enter image description here

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