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LONG BLOG

Rant on Zune games and color blindness.

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So there was a Microsoft Zune update (try not to die from a heart attack while laughing at me for owning a Zune) that included a few more games for the device. One of the additions is a shmup titled Space Battle aka Zauri. It�s pretty basic stuff that only offers very little in entertainment. There is an upgrade system with different stats that don�t seem to make a huge impact except in the extreme highs/lows. The controls are horrid. I have one of the older models and the control pad makes doing anything other than going left/right/up/down a pain in the ass. Sound effects are what you would expect.

A description of the game reads as so: �Prepare to save the universe from the evil Zauri armada! Battle through five stages through the Zauri�s solar system and stop their plans for galactic domination. Pick up powerups to increase your firepower and your ship�s abilities.�

This guy seems to be doing pretty good


The main complaint I have about the game is that the incoming fire from the bad guys is a weird color of red. Being slightly color blind makes tracking these things difficult. On the second level (of four), the background is yellow and the enemy ships are also yellow which leads me to make surprise kamikaze attacks (a surprise for me anyways). Do developers not test for colorblindness?


If you�re color blind you can see a picture of me doing your mom last night.

I�ve noticed this with a handful of games in the past, mainly from puzzle games. I haven�t really thought about it much because a majority of games made within the last 10 years either don�t give me much of a problem or I just don�t end up playing the ones that are especially bad. Hexic (which is also on the Zune) gave me some problems in that I had to really concentrate on a specific zone of the board to tell the colors apart. If I looked at the entire board I wouldn�t notice the difference between light colored greens and yellows.

I guess the moral of this story is:
When making a game, please test or account for color blindness because it really sucks when we can�t see vital information on screen. It doesn�t take that much extra effort and if you do it at least nobody will complain.
-or-
Don�t buy a Zune

I�ll leave you with one of my favorite Frank Zappa songs which I was listening to while playing Zauri: Watermelon In Easter Hay

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About Lurfadurone of us since 3:26 PM on 07.03.2008

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