Or: Two quick things to potentially improve your Champions Online graphical experience.
I’ve had a very short time to play around with Champions, what with other games and that Real Life thing proving somewhat stalwart distractions, not to mention Champions crashing on me for the first four attempts to get through the character creator when I did have a chance to play; I shalln’t be saying much until I’ve had a chance to make a nice scalpel incision, insert a pair of Melmoth’s patented stainless steel game spreaders, and have a good old rummage around in its innards.
However, I’ve read a fair bit about how the current crop of ‘testers’ have not enjoyed the graphical style of the game, and I have to say that it is something that immediately grated with me. Perhaps I’m used to CoH’s smooth and elegant style, albeit a little dated now, or perhaps my eyes just don’t like being made to witness the computer generated equivalent of the BBC’s Willo the Wisp as viewed through a hazy drunken stupor whilst wearing your friend’s hideously strong-prescription glasses.
In short: I hate Bloom.
I don’t know what Bloom does, or why developers insist on putting it in their games and making everything turn a slightly trippy shade of woah, but I wish they’d stop. Or turn it off by default, so the three people out there who like that sort of thing can be the ones to go and find it buried in the video options and then play around with its settings.
Case in point: my character, a remake of my Thief of Socks from City of Heroes, had a bloom effect applied to his head that was so strong you couldn’t actually make out any of the detail beneath his hood. Not without looking really closely, and then having those strange spots in front of your eyes for the rest of the day that get stronger when you blink. I think perhaps ‘bloom’ is the name of that effect, you know, when you look into the sun and then blink and see the sun spot behind your eyelids, and the quicker and harder you blink the more powerful the effect, and each time it strobes it goes ‘bloom’. Bloom. BLOOM. Like some sort of Spielberg alien trying to communicate directly through your eyes and into your brain.
Where was I? Oh yes, BLOOM. So I turned the bloom effect off and had an instant improvement: I could see my character! So there you are little fellow, tucked away beneath that big blob of bloom! However, having done this, the rest of the world, having been ensconced in, and possibly entirely formed of, bloom, was now so dark that I thought I’d entered an instanced mission, possibly called Attack of Emperor Emo. The solution to this, after a little bit of fiddling, was to turn off Post Processing. I won’t be entirely convinced about turning off Post Processing until I’ve tried a few areas with various lighting effects, it may just be that the starter area is incredibly gloomy due to the prevailing invasion.
It’s all entirely subjective of course, and I feel that everything is still VERY SHINY OW MY EYES, but I thought I’d share my findings in case others also found that these settings also dramatically reduce their occurrences of expeditious eyeball evacuation.
To find the options mentioned, press Escape and then select Options.
Go to the Video tab and tick the “Show advanced options” box.
Go to the Effects section and use the Bloom drop-down to turn Bloom off.
Post Processing is a radio on/off button just above the Bloom setting.
Never let it be said that KiaSA consists of nothing but puerile persiflage.
Mostly puerile persiflage, admittedly.