In the heat of the moment in modern first-person shooters, being able to distinguish red from green can mean the difference between a game-winning kill and an unfortunate team frag. This usually simple distinction can be a frustrating muddle for about 9% to 12% of the population — the percentage born with colour vision deficiency or, more commonly, colour blindness.
While colour-blind gamers have always used personal workarounds to recognize the colour differences in their video games, it makes for a serious roadblock against the enjoyment of more fast-paced and unforgiving play styles. Apparently, the co-developers of the upcoming sure-to-be blockbuster Modern Warfare 3 have recognized this and are taking steps to rectify a situation perhaps more widespread than previously acknowledged the most recent Question of the Week on the Sledgehammer Games website, COO Michael Condrey states that Modern Warfare 3 will feature options that will allow players to tailor colour sets according to their visual needs. Answering the question of a colour-blind gamer, Condrey writes:
" I am happy to report that we are working on a colour blind assist option for Modern Warfare 3"
While Condrey does not share any details of what these Assist options will entail, his enthusiasm for the subject (even in a short blog post) is palpable. One gets the idea that it will be a more refined version of Call Of Duty: Black Ops basic colour change options, geared directly toward players with vision deficiency. Says Condrey (almost gleefully, one imagines)
"You won't be able to blame your red-green deficiency for all that friendly-fire come November 8th"
The announcement comes as an interesting side-chapter in Modern Warfare 3′s twisty development. Sledgehammer Games is one of three co-developers of the game, along with Infinity Ward (sporting an almost completely different staff roster than previous Call Of Duty iterations) and Raven Software.
Sledgehammer is said to be focusing largely on the multiplayer wing of the game (in addition to addressing Modern Warfare 3's competition), so it’s unknown whether the Colour Blind Assist option will be available for the single-player campaign. Then again, it’s not like people will really be signing on for the single-player Modern Warfare experience at this point, eh?
Do you have colour vision deficiency? If so, does this announcement affect your decision to purchase Modern Warfare 3? Share your thoughts on the matter — as well as any workarounds you’ve used in the past — in the comments!
Modern Warfare 3 will release for PC, PlayStation3, and Xbox 360 on November 9, 2011.