I'm currently doing some game development and I've been curious about this situation for many years.
Let's say your game has two resolutions: 640x480 and 800x600 (using small numbers just for simplicity). I have an image that I want to, no matter, take up 1/4 of the screen. For 640x480 resolution, it would be 320x240; while 800x600 resolution, it would be 400x300. There's a few ways I think of that this could be accomplished:
- Make the image 320x240 and scale it up on the larger resolution (will look pixelated)
- Make the image 400x300 and scale it down on the smaller resolution (loss of detail)
- Create two separate images for each resolution (size bloat)
Just for 4:3 aspect ration, you probably have 5-6 resolutions that are commonly found in more professional games; plus additional ones for 16:10 and 16:9. Creating separate assets for each aspect ratio makes sense, but doing it for each resolution sounds like overkill and a huge size jump.
How do developers normally handle this sort of situation?
UPDATE: This information would be used for a 2D platformer.
Part of the reason that I'm interested in this is trying to keep a "level playing field" for all players no matter what resolution they are at. I don't want the 800x600 resolution player to be able to see more of the level than the 640x480 player can.
Additionally, since I really have no graphics experience, I'm not sure how much the resolution changes would affect the integrity of the images.