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More bugs that affect the artists (Gaming)

by CruelLEGACEY @, Toronto, Monday, December 09, 2019, 12:26 (287 days ago) @ Cody Miller

The thing is, this “technical vs artistic choice” issue is not black and white. As I already described, light bloom can be an artistic decision, but it also has technical implications. It’s very possible that the bloom was added to hide other visual shortcomings. I’m not arguing that this was the case for Reach... I don’t know one way or the other. But that’s the point: it isn’t obvious or clear. In the world of video games, technical issues and artistic choices directly impact each other in such a way that they cannot be easily separated. Frame rates have an aesthetic “look”, completely separate from their impact on gameplay. Remember all the backlash to the 48fps Hobbit movie? It didn’t look the way people like/expect a movie to look. Well, they effect the look of video games too. But within video games, there is also a relationship between frame rate and gameplay, plus other visual performance issues, so all that stuff needs to be balanced out.

My point here is that we really have no way of knowing which elements of Reach’s visuals were purely artistic choices, which were purely technical issues, and which were some kind of compromise between the two. I suspect that almost everything to do with game development falls into that 3rd category. But even if we could say with certainty that specific elements were purely technical in nature, it isn’t obvious that changing them would be an improvement. As my TLoU example illustrates, sometimes an improvement on paper actually harms the overall look.

Playing MCC Reach, I was quite impressed by the overall clarity and crispness of the image. Had the light bloom been cranked up, the visuals might not have made such an impression on me. Or, perhaps I would have liked the look of the game even more. Who knows. My point is that ANY changes are nonetheless changes, and whether or not a player likes or dislikes those changes is going to be a question of personal taste.


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