Blog: A Wild Rant on Contrast
With apologies to Richard Llewellyn... How dark was my television that day, too, black in the bright sun.
Jimmy, WTF is with all these dark games lately? I don't mean dark as in gritty storyline, but literaly, as in "I can't see shit", dark.
I first encoutered this development this year while playing through Mass Effect. Now, Mass Effect is not truly a dark game, but there are some very low contrast parts. Specifically I'm refereing to the surface maps when landing on a planet. The map screen consists of a dark blue field with some slightly lighter (but by no means light) blue segments to indicate elevation. I couldn't see the map at all unless I closed all the blinds and even then it was a bit of a struggle.
More recently, Batman Arkham Asylum was released for the PS3 and 360. I loved this game, but you really had to play more than half of it with the "detective mode" on which turned the screen bluish and highlighted the bad guys skeletons in red. There were many parts of this game that were hard to see without it.
Just this week, Halo 3: ODST came out for the XBox 360. This game too has a mode (they call it VISR) that allows enhanced vision. Half the game, again, requires it because it's night and I guess there's no lights on in the city or something. VISR mode highlights all the edges of objects in red (for enemies), green (for allies), or yellow (for objects like building walls). There was a part early on where you have to search through a dark building for a clue, and I swear I was just walking into wall for 5 minutes because I couldn't see shit.
Do the developers of these games play them in the dark exclusively? Can we get them some sunshine? Serioulsy, bump the contrast a little... or throw in a flashlight for my character. Do something so I can see. Wandering around in the dark is not fun for me. Some of us like to play during the day or with a light on so other people in the room can see what they're doing.
End of rant.
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