The Real Truth from a Color-blind gamer
I’ve recently been enjoying Bioshock 2 on my new ever-so-amazing Velocity Micro Z90. I beat it yesterday, and I must say, it was pretty good. A lot better than I expected. This lead me to, as I always do after beating a game, browse some gaming-related forums to see people’s opinions on the title. As usual, there were lovers and haters and everyone in between. Anywho, to my dismay, I stumbled across an article on Negative Gamer that was bitching about how Bioshock 2 wasn’t “colorblind accessible”. Now, I’ve been color blind all my life (obviously, that’s how it works), but only found out a couple years back. I’m red-green color blind, I believe somewhat of a minor case, but I still can’t see any of the damn numbers in those damn tests (alright, I can see the 25, but that’s seriously it).
But about the “article” on Negative Gamer. Now, I know they’re trying to inform the general population here, but it really doesn’t work like that. If you looked over the article (or at least the pictures), you’ll notice that a color-blind person sees completely different things when playing the hacking mini-game in Bioshock 2. Well, theoretically, then, you would assume that Color Blind people would not be able to differentiate between the first picture and the one below it. As in, the picture for “red-green” people should look identical to the original, unaltered picture, right? Wrong. I can plainly say that there is a difference. A big one. And, oh yeah, I can play the hacking mini-game just fine. And I can see the colors, too! *gasp*
Looks like whoever wrote this used some shitty Photoshop filter to alter the picture for “non-color vision”. Well, sorry, but it didn’t work. Its not like I’m mad, I’m just kind of bothered by the fact that people assume color blind people cannot plainly distinguish between two colors. The simple fact is: we can. Just not colors that are similar shades. The colors on the Bioshock hacking mini-game are vibrant and very distinct, they are easily distinguishable to my eyes. I’m sure some color blind gamers out there have trouble, but its just rude and ignorant to assume all people with color blindness see the world in black and white (which I’ve been asked on numerous occasions, by the way).
Well, that was somewhat of a rant, wasn’t it? Well, yes it was, but there is a point in all of this. One being that people shouldn’t listen to everything they hear on the internet, especially from people who make up reasons to bitch about a great game like Bioshock 2 by citing lack of “color-blind accessibility”. That’s complete bullshit. And most color-blind gamers can probably tell the difference, anyway.
What’s the other, you ask? It’s that developers have they’re own goddamn rights and if they want to release a game that color-blind people have no fucking chance of playing, then far be it from me (or random people who write articles on the internet) to say no. If they want to give color-blind gamers some nice accessibility options, that’s great. If they don’t, that’s fine too. But I (and most color blind gamers) won’t be buying it. That’s 6% of their market right there. If they want to take that chance, it’s up to them. But the main idea here is: it is up to them. We don’t have a say. We can whine and complain all we want, but at the end of the day, if the publisher/developer thinks that adding a color-blind mode is best for business, then they’ll do it, otherwise, they won’t. Pure and simple.
I hope that was (somewhat) informative and educational. I am color-blind, and I haven’t had that much problem with video games in general. I’m also very glad that developers don’t feel pressured to make game’s especially for us, because that’s just silly. If they they want to add some extra options when people plead nicely (without complaining) then they will, because that’s how they make money, by listening to their fans. If not, it’s their prerogative. It bothers me that some people dumb-down the explanation of color-blindness to either “the world’s in black-and-white” or “red and green appear as an ugly shade of brown” (look here for an amusing article with pictures). Oh well, such is life. Lack of understanding and such. Hope you learned something about people with color deficiency today, or at least, aren’t so quick to judge us. Oh, and whenever someone brings up some stupid sissy-ass excuse to bash a game like “its not colorblind accessible” you should call them a whiny bitch and leave.
That’s all for today. Until next time…