Friend/Foe Colors (Request - Colorblind User)

Hey devs,

I’m a colorblind fan of Age of Empires 2. I really enjoyed the old Friend/Foe Color Scheme, because I could easily checkout the mini-map (Blue/Red).

While I appreciate the new colorblind options, there are color combinations that I can’t distinguish during competitive online play. I lose ground trying to spot the differences.

Could you please bring back the old color options? Each colorblind person has unique “weaknesses”, and the old Blue/Red scheme worked great for me :slight_smile:

4 Likes

I second this. It was nice adding the different types of colorblind levels.

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Yeah, the colorblind options are nice, but some of us have perception difficulties that are not well represented.
The Blue/Red Mode was awesome.

I second anything we can do to help users who have accessibility needs.

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I use UI automation at the company I work at to do automated testing. After teaching myself these technologies, and seeing how the company I work for treats these as secondary concerns, I have been very interested in the needs of users who have disabilities. Do you mind taking a minute to tell me what different types of colorblind levels mean? I hope one day I can dedicate myself full time to working on technologies for users who need accessibility technologies but for now I am trying to learn what all the different needs are.

Yes please! I’m also colorblind, usually play with red/white colorblind mode. With red and white team colors it can be very difficult to tell things like knights apart. It would be really convenient if there were more options, or preferably if people could choose their own friend/foe colors.

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Please i want foe colour again

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Hi Tremors08,

Thank you for your interest in helping colorblind people. Well, to summarize our issues, the human vision system builds images by stacking layers of Red, Green and Blue color components. While most people only have small differences in perception, colorblind people are unable to distinguish differences evident to the majority (we see a uniform block in such cases). 99% of us only have issues with Green and Red, but some people can only see monochromatic images (Grayscale). Color-blindness affects 300+ million people worldwide.

In my own case, I can distinguish the most basic colors, but I am 100% oblivious to the difference between blue, purple, violet, etc. In such cases, I can only tell if one color is lighter than the other, but I could never name them individually. My perception also changes a lot depending on the layout. I could probably read a text written in two “complicated” colors, but if the spots are in different locations (like in the Age 2 mini-map), my life becomes miserable :slight_smile: . Beyond my issues with Blue and Purple, I have also confused Green with Yellow, Brown with Green, and subtle background colors with white.

In the end, it’s really complicated to create colorblind options. The only rule of safety is to make sure that the images are distinguishable in grayscale. Beyond that, keeping a color scheme requiring only basic colors such as Blue (me) vs. Red (enemy) helps a lot.

PS. As a side-note, I also liked the Blue/Red color feature in Age of Empires, because in other strategy games, I had to play ranked matches against people who chose “complicated” colors on purpose to confuse colorblind people. My opponent shouldn’t be able to determine how I see the mini-map.

3 Likes

Buanaventura broke it down really well. I thought that I would tell you why I settled on red/white colors.
I have problems distinguishing similar shades of red/green/brown or blue/purple or light green and yellow. There is a lot of variance In colorblind people.
In my eyes healthy grass looks orange. If somebody plays as orange they are completely invisible on my minimap. Default is blue and red. I had trouble differentiating terrain features like cliffs on the minimap or trees from my red enemy. I played a few games where I failed to notice buildings on my minimap until I manually looked at that part of the map so I turned on colorblind mode.
The first option is blue/yellow team colors. My problem with this was seeing my own naval units on the minimap and my opponent looks exactly like gold deposits on the minimap.
The other option is red/white team colors which I play. My white opponents are easily identifiable on the minimap. They look like relics, but it’s not a big deal because relics are 1 dot. My only problem now is that my knights look really similar to my opponent’s at a glance. It’s not a huge disadvantage.
If I could play as yellow with white opponents I think it would fix all of my problems. I would easily be able to tell my enemy from terrain features and resources on the minimap and also be able to distinguish between knights at a glance.

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Friend and Foe colors is still in the game. Check your hotkeys, ALT+G should be the default.

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Cool, it worked, thanks!

If you are on a Windows 10 PC, there are various colorblind settings in the Ease of Access section of settings, but I don’t know if they work in game.
Also you could try tinkering with colors in the settings for your graphics card- those changes would work in game.

Welcome to the club of 8% of Men and 0.5% of Women having a defective color vision. For me, It’s not a good solution at all to just change the teams colors. It’s nice to have it optional, but I see (lol) problems in this method.

If I choose the color blue for myself so that me, my team and my opponents are actually given different colors (for me) than they actually have (for everybody else), then I have a problem. At least in team games, when my random teammate doesn’t know me well and calls me by my color: “Hey red, can you open your wall for me, so that my army can pass?” - I won’t react when I don’t know that I’m actually red and not blue.

But there are tools out there that can simulate different types of colorblindness so that full color enabled people can get a guess of what ‘we’ are seeing. And there’s also filters out there that can shift the ‘problem colors’ a little bit towards a better visable frequency or just cut bad Frequencies out. Actually, a canadian company patented glasses with such filters.

For a game like this, I would recommend following options:

  • provide default color maps like it is now
  • If selectet to just exchange colors, you should (somehow) tell the colorblind player what he is seen like by others.
  • provide the option to customise the color map that will be given to yourself and other players. (And please don’t just use a choose-one-out-of-24-colors thing. Provide a real-color map or let us enter RGB-Codes.)
  • provide adjustable color filters (like mentioned above) without the need to change team colors completely. Fine tuning is key here.
  • If using white or yellow as default opponent color, let the player choose alternative colors for relics/gold

Long wishlist, but a wish is a wish is a wish.