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More bugs that affect the artists (Gaming)

by CruelLEGACEY @, Toronto, Monday, December 09, 2019, 09:03 (287 days ago) @ Cody Miller

I’m not saying being sharper and smoother is bad. It’s that all the post processing is incorrectly scaled based on resolution, so the effect and aesthetic Bungie was going for is lost. Look at bloom comparisons, as they are the most obvious.

And I’m saying that’s an incredibly nit-picky issue. MCC Reach looks like Reach. The aesthetic style is very much intact and well presented.

I’m not saying it’s wrong to wish that the light-bloom effects were recreated perfectly. I get that. I am saying that when you play the game, it looks and feels like Halo Reach. There is no betrayal or failure to deliver the original artistic vision, IMO.

It’s also really tricky to describe visual changes as purely good or purely bad. The original release of Reach suffered from a great deal of visual ghosting, particularly when rendering objects in motion. That blurry, “double-vision” look was ever-present. This MCC release has fixed that problem. I look at it and think “this is how I’d always wished Reach looked”, but from a purely archival point of view, this improvement does change “the look” of the game. Same goes for the frame rate. Stutter and slow-down was part of the original look. Playing the game at 60fps is not “true to the original aesthetic”, but I’m sure most people prefer it nonetheless. Light bloom is less straightforward, but my point still applies. It can be used as an aesthetic touch, but it can also be used to hide a certain degree of low-res textures and overall lack of detail (as someone who used loads of bloom effects in my machinima, I’m pretty dialed into that, lol). Light bloom was part of Reach’s look, and it was simultaneously contributing to the lack of visual definition and clarity. So “better” or “worse” depends on what you want and expect; an archival reproduction of the original, or a modernized update.

At the end of the day, all this stuff will boil down to personal preferences. In the case of The Last of Us Remastered, I actually preferred the visuals of the original PS3 version. The artistic design that went into creating the textures was perfectly suited to the screen resolution of the PS3. The lower resolution actually helped blur the lines (literally) between texture maps, sprites, and fully 3D assets. In the Remastered version, the higher screen resolution just made it easier to see the separate elements that were layered together. Walls that looked like cracked brick covered in vines on the PS3 now looked more like a smooth surface covered in wallpaper painted to look like bricks and vines, with a few sprites sticking out to give the illusion of depth.

All this to say, I think it’s perfectly fair for someone to look at a game like MCC Reach and day “I prefer the look of the original”. I don’t happen to agree in this case, but that doesn’t matter. Where I push back is when there are claims of disrespect to the original vision, or something along those lines. Like, I might take those claims seriously if they’re coming from an artist that worked on Reach, but as a general rule I don’t think the whole “I’m going to act offended on behalf of someone else” routine carries much weight :)


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