Episode the First: Tiny-Ass Text
Hi, I’m new here. Most of the writers on Controller Punch don’t know I exist. You’ll get over it.
In my vast bravado, I’ve decided I am going to spearhead a new as-often-as-I-care-to-write-it feature called “I Will Fight you if you Disagree”. Come with me, won’t you, as I get upset with a problem that effects very few people, but annoys me like a thorn in my ass.
I’ll admit to it, I don’t have an HDTV. I hope to have one soon, but I’d prefer to spend disposable income on games themselves as opposed to a TV upon which to play them. I suspect I’m not alone in this. In fact, I’m willing to bet at least a quarter of next-gen console gamers play exclusively on SDTVs, especially if you take Wii gamers into account. I have no statistics to back this up, it’s just a best guess, but fuck you I’m calling it.
Why then do developers refuse to offer gamers text optimized for SDTVs? I’m speaking most recently of Borderlands and Dragon Age: Origins, but the worst offender I’ve come across thus far is Mass Effect. The text in Bioware’s RPG epic is so mind-meltingly small on my shit-ass TV, that I decided to avoid it altogether, mute the audio, and interpret the character’s interactions, animations and lip movements into my own outlandish, rape-fueled narrative (which admittedly was more fun than I expected).
I know there are ways around the problem, I could buy a VGA cable and play the game on an LCD monitor for example, but as far as I’m concerned I shouldn’t have to go out of my way and buy extra shit in order to read CRUCIAL PLOT POINTS IN A GAME I’VE PAID FOR. So make the extra 20 minutes of effort, and add an SDTV option with a font size that doesn’t cause my eyes to self-destruct.