While writing content for a game, I got stuck in naming a button. Now, this button shows how the player played the game. Clicking this button will again play the recorded game that has just ended. This feature is to learn what all mistakes the player has made during the game.

Now, the button is little and one word is what it can occupy. I wrote 'Replay' because we have replays in baseball, cricket, lawn tennis, and the like.

The developer said that 'replay' also means 'Playing Again.' And, she's right! We don't want our gamers to get confused.

The word is the same: 'replay,' but it means two things: playing again and playing the recorded game that has just ended.

What solution you can think of?

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    With the constraints given this isn't a real answer, but if a larger button COULD be used then "Watch Replay" would be very easily understood. – Kamil Drakari Dec 27 '17 at 16:06
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    I think just having an icon of a video camera and no words might be a solution; especially if you can give it a tooltip on hoverover that tells the user what the button does – SamYonnou Dec 27 '17 at 19:55

On one hand it may seem a serious problem but on the other I came across this often in racing games like Porsche Unleashed, Most Wanted, FlatOut and etc.

There are a few solutions here.

  1. Leave the word as is "Replay" and remember that by pressing this button a player won't be angry with having to start the game again. Notice that in most games "Replay" means "watch the played game". If it were something like "Play again" or "Re-play" it would make more sense to worry.
  2. Use a different term instead of "Replay". In some games I remember coming across the verbs "Flashback" and "Play back", as well as "Review".
  3. Try a very different approach by using verbs like "Rewind" for instance.
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    +1 for the other alternatives. I liked Rewind, Flashback...etc – Maulik V Dec 26 '17 at 10:17
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    I like the hyphen suggestion. Re-play means play again, not play the recording. – J.R. Dec 26 '17 at 22:40
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    I like all of this except for "Survey" I don't think I've ever come across this in a video game and would be a little confused. To me it seems like looking at the statistical data rather than watching a replay. – LateralTerminal Dec 27 '17 at 15:45
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    @LateralTerminal If I saw a "Survey" button after playing a game I'd expect it to give me a feedback form to fill out, surveying how I felt about the game experience or something. – amalloy Dec 27 '17 at 18:43
  • @amalloy yeah that too. – LateralTerminal Dec 28 '17 at 14:29

In most games, the "replay" means to play the game over, so using this to show an "instant replay" of the previous action would be confusing.

I suggest instead using review (as in re-"view", to view again), since you can't fit "instant replay" onto the small button. While players might not initially know what this button does, afterwards it should make sense.

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    I agree that "review" is a good choice here, but I'm skeptical of the claim that even many (let alone most) games use "replay" to mean "play the game over". At the very least, I'd expect "retry" to be far more common, but I honestly can't think of a single example using "replay" in the sense you describe. Maybe it's common in a genre I don't play often? – Mark S. Dec 26 '17 at 16:03
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    @MarkS. it may have been more common back in my arcade days. – Andrew Dec 26 '17 at 16:23
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    Also, 'review' could mean "Take me to the App Store to post a review", which will ensure the button never gets clicked. – SomeoneSomewhereSupportsMonica Dec 27 '17 at 4:22
  • I am struggling to think of any games that use replay to mean start a new game... – Chris Dec 27 '17 at 9:52
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    @Quuxplusone: You may be right. I suspect though that context would be quite important too. Finishing a game of starcraft you probably would be more likely to expect a video replay, finishing a game of flappy birds? You probably expect a start again. – Chris Dec 28 '17 at 0:56

Try instant replay for looking back on what has happened in your game and restart for replaying the game all over again from the beginning as if the original game had never happened.

  • You ignored the size of the button! :) It's mentioned! And, there is no option for 'restart.' The game is such – Maulik V Dec 26 '17 at 6:17
  • Well then just do "I. Replay" for "Instant Replay" and put in the direction manual what "I. Replay" means, or do "I.R." with an explanation in the manual. – Nick Dec 26 '17 at 6:32
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    @Nick I rarely read the manual for games, expecting that the UI of the game will be enough. "I. Replay" looks like bad UI to me. – wizzwizz4 Dec 26 '17 at 12:40
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    I have a game on my phone that uses "Replay" on one screen to watch the last played level, and "Restart" on another screen (after watching) to start the level over. It doesn't seem at all confusing, so I'd recommend sticking with "Replay". – CJ Dennis Dec 27 '17 at 1:43

Did you consider adding a "play" icon like this: ▶ as opposed to "replay" icon that would commonly look like this: ↻?

Otherwise, "Watch replay" conveys the meaning nicely and takes a little less space than "Instant replay".

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    Exactly what I thought. I was thinking about the video icon though ! – Pepijn Olivier Dec 26 '17 at 21:42
  • Wonderful suggestion. +1 for the symbolic presentation. However, the other answer is a bit more precise! :) Thanks anyway. – Maulik V Dec 27 '17 at 6:06
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    I'd use a counterclockwise arrow though (turning backwards rather than rolling forwards, which seems more like a "skip" icon to me). – Broots Waymb Dec 27 '17 at 17:01

You can't use "replay" because of the double meaning of "play:" of a game and of recorded footage.

You can "watch" footage or a game, but both contexts have the same meaning. So, you could use "rewatch."

  • I don't think "rewatch" is a great choice for a game recap (I'm not saying it's wrong though). I didn't watch the game the first time, I played it! I think "rewatch" would be a better choice if the button were in a video player and it replayed the video you had just viewed. – ColleenV parted ways Dec 31 '17 at 15:51
  • @ColleenV But the recap system is basically a video player. – wizzwizz4 Dec 31 '17 at 15:57
  • But the game isn't a video, so I'm watching a video of the game I played for the first time, not rewatching a video I've already seen. It's a fine distinction, so I wouldn't say "rewatch" is wrong. I think replay is better because it already has a commonly understood sense of playing back a match or game. – ColleenV parted ways Dec 31 '17 at 16:31
  • @ColleenV But also of playing again. – wizzwizz4 Dec 31 '17 at 16:33
  • In AmE, most games I've played use "restart" not "replay", which is probably why I think "rewatch" is a little strange. I've never seen "rewatch" used in this context. – ColleenV parted ways Dec 31 '17 at 16:35

It seem to me that the main priority is to not give the impression that the button will delete the current game. If any player who is not under that impression wants to know what the button does, they will presumably press it and see what happens. I recommend "video" or "recap", but "review" is also good.

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    Upvoted for "recap", which seems as good or better than the words "watch", "rewatch", "review" suggested elseanswer. – Quuxplusone Dec 27 '17 at 20:21

Unless there is already a different button with this name, just call the button "Watch". This conveys the essence of what the button does, allowing the user to watch a game. As it happens, it is the game just played.

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