For those of us lagging behind the curve when it comes to gaming in high definition, the trend for using ridiculously tiny text in games is a curse. As font sizes shrink, the more SDTV owners have to strain their eyes. It's a cruel punishment for being slow adopters of superior televisuals. But, my persecuted standard-definition television owning friends, all hope is not lost.
Vanquish, the upcoming bullet buffet from legendary developer Shinji Mikami, has an options menu. Which is not unusual. However, within that option menu there is an 'SDTV Mode' option, which can be toggled 'On' or 'Off' as required. As someone who has still not enriched their existence with an HDTV, the inclusion of this mode makes me happy.
By selecting SDTV mode, some text is made bigger, or 'zoomed' as the game refers to it. This gives the game much improved readability. This is progress. Observe:
As you can just about see, with SDTV mode switched on, elements of the weapon read-out in the bottom corner are marginally bigger. Honestly, they are. There's bugger all difference with the map and score in the top corner, but something's better than nothing, right? And just take a look at the difference in pause menu font size. It is significant:
If all console games embrace an SDTV mode, I'll be able to delay buying a new, mega-fancy HDTV for even longer! Maybe I'll save up and buy a 3D HDTV. Imagine that. I'd be an early adopter. And the talk of the village.
September 1, 2010