Borderlands 2 getting colorblind mode

Gearbox confirms new option for blockbuster shooter will be available when next patch rolls out.

Borderlands 2 will receive a colorblind mode through an upcoming patch, developer Gearbox Software has announced. When you enable the option through the game's Video Options menu, all items will feature a line of text that state the color in brackets, like "[Green]" or "[Orange]."

"The color name in the item card will appear on items that are dropped in the world, on items that are found in a chest or in a vending machine, and will appear on items when you are examining them in your inventory," Gearbox programmer Jeffrey Broome said on the studio's blog.

Players will be able to choose from three types of color vision deficiency: Deuteranopia, Protanopia, or Tritanopia.

"If you aren’t sure which type of color vision deficiency you have, you can just try them out one by one until you find the one that works best for you," Broome said.

Unfortunately, Broome explained that he recently discovered a bug for the "protanopia" setting which causes the wrong color values to show up. The bug was discovered too late--and it can't be hot-fixed, he says--so it will need to be fixed in a future update.

"For now, people with protanomaly or protanopia should just use the 'deuteranopia' colorblind setting instead," he said.

It's not clear if the colorblind patch will be available for the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 versions of Borderlands 2.

If you're interested in colorblindness as it relates to games, definitely check out Broome's full blog post, which is an excellent primer on the subject.

Borderlands 2 launched in 2012 and has shipped over 7.5 million copies to date, on pace to become 2K Games' best-selling title of all-time.

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Eddie Makuch

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.
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43 comments
AshTrai
AshTrai

They've done basically the same thing that blizzard did to wow years ago... and it's pointless to put "green" (or "uncommon" in wow's case) on items because that's not where any issue lies. I wonder if anybody on the team that decided this change has colourblindness or even understands how this effects interaction inside a game. 


Now, i haven't played borderlands 2 (i did play the first though and had 0 problems with reading loot despite being colourblind) but the biggest issue with fps games when it comes to clourblindness is the targeting reticle or laser sight which some games make red/green. Hover this reticle over a green surface like grass and i can't see it at all. 


I'm yet to see a game do a colourblind mode where it actually improves anything gameplay wise for a colourblind person. Surely knowing what "quality" an item is in a game is utterly irrelevant since surely players are looking at the stat increases it gives and not whether it's a green, blue, purple or orange quality item.

Hastur
Hastur

I'm colour blind, but unlike Battlefield 4 or Planetside 2 for instance, I never had any issues with Borderlands.

deadpen
deadpen

My son is color blind and until this type of option was available he got so much negative feedback on live for team killing. 

crunchb3rry
crunchb3rry

Cool news. Loved this similar feature in Battlefield 4. Makes it so easy to differentiate squadmates from enemies for me in that game. For me, certain shades of green just look like standard yellow to me. Those Bejeweled and Puzzle Fighter type games frustrated the hell out of me for that reason.

StHapns247
StHapns247

I have a hard time distinguishing some of the colors, but I think it has more to do them being similar and the opacity they chose more than anything. I am colorblind, but only for darker blues and browns, so I don't think it has an effect, at least not with the item colors.

Usually, if a gun has awful stats, but it still worth a ton of money its a pretty good indication it is "high level" color.

SpicaAntares
SpicaAntares

Makes you wonder if there is that many people having problems with colors, and on those that many playing games, or if it's just another PR stunt to get in the news for a little while.

GameYakuza
GameYakuza

don't colorblind people just use some color profile on PC that shifts all colors?

Dannystaples14
Dannystaples14

Cool. Must be a shame not to be able to see this game in the original colours. 

grbolivar
grbolivar

Wow, it is VERY rare that a company goes this far with their games. Congratulations Gearbox, really.

Ahiru-San
Ahiru-San

I have trouble telling the blues and purples apart in this game… yes I'm colorblind, but apart from that, the game doesn't offer any major challenge for me…

other games have some greens and gold colors way too confusing that I wish they had a colorblind mode...

randomkidlol
randomkidlol

Knowing gearbox, theyll probably charge you 1.49 for this as DLC

beuneus12
beuneus12

I have yet to meet a colorblind person in my life..

neowarrior121
neowarrior121

tbh ever since they nerfed a load of guns and fixed fun glitches i have become put off with borderlands. i dont see why they had to fix the bank glitch that allowed more then the limit and such.

StHapns247
StHapns247

I'm puzzled at the execution. If they are simply adding the word that represents the color, why are there 3 options? There should just be one that adds the words and toggling it off removes the words.

meedokicky
meedokicky

Oh this would have helped, but I've already cleared it. Not sure what kind of color blindness I have though. I often mistake between light blue/pink, brown/dark red, yellow/lime green. I am an artist and people often point my mistakes out and it is embarrassing ^^'

ExtremePhobia
ExtremePhobia

Sorry for the double post but the first line from that Blog Post says "all platforms" and reads:


"Hi!  I'm Jeffrey “botman” Broome, one of the programmers that worked on Borderlands 2.  I'm back “Inside the Box” again to tell you about how an upcoming Borderlands 2 update will (among other things) bring a colorblind mode option to all platforms."


Perhaps we can get an edit Eddie?

vicsrealms
vicsrealms

Ok, that makes more since then when I first read it.  I originally thought it would allow you to change the game to some insane color scheme...which would kind of fit the game.  What?  This is Borderlands after all.  ~grin~ 

ExtremePhobia
ExtremePhobia

Maybe this is the beginning of a change for this type of stuff. A few games patch it in after release and before you know it, it's just a feature put in during normal development.

nl_skipper
nl_skipper

@SpicaAntares Colour blind-ness, particularly red/green is actually pretty common in men, up to 10% of all men from European ancestry (which is most north Americans).  Women only have colour blind-ness in much smaller numbers though... but 10% is pretty significant.

deadpen
deadpen

@Dannystaples14 It has to suck, my son tells me what he sees in real life and it is almost all brown. Which living in virginia must make his viewing a crap hole (lots of green,,,,,A LOT of green) He hates fireworks (almost everything is white or yellow) and christmas isn't much better since all the lights are the same. But he does say that the sky is blue, orange, and purple when there are no clouds so that is either pretty cool or a huge headache. 

Ahiru-San
Ahiru-San

@grbolivar lots of FPS games have a colorblind mode. but at least for me none of them actually work better than the original mode…. I like when you can choose the colors (i.e. for friends/foes on radar/map) instead of simply switching to a mode…

spartanx169x
spartanx169x

@Ahiru-SanI'm not colorblind , but I have never paid attention to the colors.But I have spent hours and hours comparing stats between guns,shields and mods. I'm sure i have spent more timing comparing guns than I have actually doing missions. Some guns have been very difficult to decide between.

Ahiru-San
Ahiru-San

@beuneus12 it's actually pretty common… but mostly don't even know they are.. I only found out I was colorblind when I was 18… when I tried to read the numbers outta those colored dots test...

phoenix1289
phoenix1289

@neowarrior121


Because the  point is for the player to have to decide between what gun to hold onto and what to drop. It's like a choice in a Mass Effect game or any other game with choice. You can choose one or the other but not both, but if that limitation is removed it takes away the impact of the choice.


Choices carry more weight when there is a good and a bad side to them. But if you can just have both without the downside then the choice loses all value.

Take the Mass Effect 1 choice to save Kaiden or Ashley. You had to stop and decide which character you would rather save. For some it was an easy choice but for many it's a tough decision. But now imagine if there was a third option to save both. Suddenly that choice loses it's purpose. Why would you choose one when you could just save both.

Or look at XCOM: Enemy Unknown as an example. When you get an alert you could do a mission to get money, or to get engineers, or to lower the panic level of a country but you can't have all 3. That gives weight to the choice because you have to decide which is more important at the moment. You have to choose knowing the consequence that you won't get the others.

But imagine there was a glitch where by doing one mission you get all 3 rewards. Now that choice is completely useless and devolves into a right answer. If the choice becomes have everything or get one thing and lose the others there is no question which is the better option and the choice becomes meaningless.

By having infinite bank slots it allows people to hold onto every gun in the game thereby removing any meaning behind that aspect of choice.

monkor
monkor

@StHapns247 If they go so far as making three modes, I would assume they're adjusting the colour values of each mode, since there are differences in which wavelengths of light the three types of deficiency affect.

meedokicky
meedokicky

@vicsrealmshaha i agree :D I am not a big fan of FPS games, but I found the visual style of Borderlands very appealing.

Ahiru-San
Ahiru-San

@spartanx169x @Ahiru-San I haven't read much about the colors in this game, but I'm sure they go like in Diablo right? like, blue are "magical", some color is like "rare", other is like "unique" and "legendary", something like that right?


but yeah, comparing which stuff to wear is too much time consuming lol.. still fun though..

Dannystaples14
Dannystaples14

@Ahiru-San @beuneus12 I'm always scared a face is going to pop up with those thanks to my grandad scaring the crap out of me with a fake one when I was younger.

el_swanno
el_swanno

Well thanks for ruining Mass Effect 1 for me, Mr Spoiler!

StHapns247
StHapns247

@monkor @StHapns247 Yeah, I know how colorblindness "works" per se. I have it, but luckily it is with dark colors and hasn't affected my life. The article does not indicate the feature actually changes the colors in the game, it simply says that it adds the name of the color to the item description, which begs the question: Why not just have a single option; color names on or color names off?

spartanx169x
spartanx169x

@Ahiru-San@spartanx169xYeah, different colors mean different things, But I hve found that it does not necessarily mean a gun is better just because of the color. Thats why I just basically ignore the color aspect. It comes down to specs that best match your play style. I love the elemental weapons. So I'll pick them MOST of the time over one thats not , but Occasionally I will come across and exceptional weapon thats not elemental-High fire rate and High damage that can do more damage in the least amount of time.  Most of the time I  focus on fire rate and damage , then accuracy, Snipers- Damage and Accuracy.

Ahiru-San
Ahiru-San

@Dannystaples14 @Ahiru-San @beuneus12 lol, you must still be young… when I was 18 those colorblind tests actually came in paperbooks, printed… of course they are all over the net now, easily google'd..

monkor
monkor

@StHapns247 @monkor   Check out the link near the bottom that says, "check out Broome's full blog post" as it goes into detail about what they are doing, and even has an example of what they're doing. Depending on the mode you select, they're hue/value shifting certain colours; greens in the case of deuteranopia for example, so you can actually distinguish between green and orange. He does mention loot beams being affected, so there may be more things that get this treatment.