Is there a list of fonts for text variable display?

Is there a list somewhere of fonts that will actually display properly when showing variable text, as in: %TextEntry% ?

Scenario: I've got two paragraphs, one that I wrote into a stationary text box to display to the user, and another that the user typed up into a data entry box that gets shown back in a regular text box with %TextEntry%. I want the two paragraphs to look like they are formatted the same way when you see them side by side. What font can I use?

I know there are many threads with info about text variables and how they display differently from regular text. With so much out there, I'd just love a list of safe fonts for this. I'm doing some testing, but nothing has worked yet. 

Also, I can't use Arial because of the character spacing issues in Arial in Storyline 2.

10 Replies
Brett Rockwood

Hi Belen,

Essentially "web safe fonts" are "variable safe fonts." Basically what you need to use are fonts that are installed on your users' computers. If you limit yourself to the "standard" Windows fonts you should be good, e.g., Arial, Calibri, Cambria, Times New Roman, etc. You may still see a difference in the quality of the rendering between the normal text and the variable text, at least I have on occasion.

Ashley Terwilliger-Pollard

Hi Belen,

There isn't a list of standard Storyline fonts for use in variables references or text entries, as fonts can't be embedded in published output for variable text. As a result, default system fonts will be substituted for variable text. Default system fonts may be different for each computer, tablet, or smartphone where your content is viewed.

Fonts that you use on your slide text though, those are embedded into the published output and should look the same throughout your course regardless of device. There are some known issues with font kerning in the published output that our team our investigating, so if you do run into a particular issue we're happy to take a look. 

Belen Ferrer

Thank you, Brett, Matthew, and Phil! This is helpful.

With this in mind, I'm thinking of going with Microsoft Sans Serif (oddly enough?), because as far as I can tell, it ships with Windows and OSX, it looks a lot like Arial but doesn't have as severe spacing issues as Arial has in SL2. (There are two concerns here: having the font be variable safe AND having it display well when it is not a variable.)

Ashley Terwilliger-Pollard

Hi Belen,

Happy to hear it and glad I could clarify. 

Yes, if the font is installed on the users system, then any text entries or variable references should keep the font settings, otherwise it'll default to a system or web font. Which font that will be is user specific, so you may want to look at using standard fonts as folks mentioned above just to ensure you accommodate the right amount of space/size based on what the user may see.