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    Hm. I like the article, but the constant reference to film having understood something that games have not is very weird. They are a different medium and also visualize different things.

    I would have also enjoyed a discussion on how this relates do gameplay, not just visuals. I’m not sure what the discussion would end up with, but I still regularly rate easy playability over realism.

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      I don’t understand too why cinema should be a reference, for me Hollywood movies look not only weird but outright ugly, especially with “genre color coding” and over-accent on blue and orange.

      As Hollywood has its own signature style and ugly cliches, AAA game industry prefers to have its own signature style and ugly chiches too. At least there are subtle differences, not “unified mainstream entertainment content style”.

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        the education given to film-makers and 3d artists is largely different and making mistakes with contrast in 3DCG isn’t anything new

        also the topic is rendering quality, which is really just tangential to playability tbqh

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          the education given to film-makers and 3d artists is largely different and making mistakes with contrast in 3DCG isn’t anything new

          But this is also a post focused on pictures, not on something I walk around in and have to get information from. Most games don’t even aim for photo-realism, for such reasons.

          also the topic is rendering quality, which is really just tangential to playability tbqh

          Sure, but playability is directly related to display techniques, especially when it comes to shooters.

          I don’t disagree that there might be a problem, but the post takes a lazy route by not putting the pictures in context.

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            • When you render things, they become pictures.
            • The post isn’t about photo-realism.
            • Playability is related to “display techniques” only insofar as something’s visible and distinguishable. That’s a pretty uninteresting low bar
            • The bulk of the text of the post is talking about the pictures

            (Edit: The post I linked isn’t just about photo-realism either. It’s about contrast clipping and proper exposure)

            I’m really confused if you think the post is bad or wrong in some way or if you’re just looking for a different post

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          Seconded, I like pretty visuals, but one of my all-time favorite games is this. I don’t personally require the games I play to be pretty, or even recent, I think a solid story and good gameplay is what really matters.

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            Well, those images aren’t heavily washed out by contrast, so I think the author would agree that you’re on to something.

            If you take a look at Part 0 of the series, the issues are mostly about new rendering technology giving us new, exciting ways to make things look bad. Older games are, vacuously, immune to the issues of the new technology.

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              Well, I don’t think Jedi Academy would be loved that much if it were released in with the same graphics, today.

              It has issues and I can only look past them by being introduced to the game when it came out. (I love JA very much)

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            I didn’t quite understand why the author was making such a big deal about it until I saw the Forza image, then scrolled up to the last HZD image. And that’s what made it click for me: it is easy to let my eyes wander over the Forza image and take in all the information (large scale, and small details). It is straining to do so in the other video game example images (the first image, and the last HZD image especially are straining).

            The whole image ends up with a much softer and more pleasant look that doesn’t carry the inherent stress we find in the images criticized at the top

            I wish this would have been the thesis statement at the top, with the Forza example image given immediately.

            Film is a strong analogy since, as anyone who grew up with a shitty digital camera can attest to, getting a good image out of a camera is a whole lot of work. And the industries built around film (photography, cinema) have had a whole lot of time to work on it. And many movies are like long strings of perfect photographs, particularly one of the 2015 Oscar nominated movies mentioned, The Grand Budapest Hotel. It too is a strong example of images that are soft, pleasant, and invitingly easy to search for detail.

            If the function of a game is how it affects us (one of the primary avenues of which being through the mechanical interactions it allows/rewards/punishes), the aesthetics that the world of the game is presented play an important role. The modern indie scene offers plenty of proof: look at Braid, Bastion, Portal, Darkest Dungeon, FTL, and plenty of others. These games would feel worse and communicate their worlds and themes worse if they were super washed out with contrast.

            If aesthetics matter at the highly stylized side of the spectrum, then it’s reasonable to believe they matter at the less stylized end too. And none of this has anything to do with photo-realism. It’s just about legibility.