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Special dice for colourblind people?

6 replies [Last post]
MoldtDK's picture
Joined: 06/19/2013

In the process of creating my game, I have stumbled upon something I never thought about before. Currently every event in my game will have multiple ways of completing them, some harder than others. My plan was to make three difficulties: Green, Yellow and Red difficulty. I planned then to have a green D6 with 4 success sides, a yellow D6 with 3 success sides and a red D6 with 2 success sides.

But when I thought of colourblindness I came to realize that to them it would just be three similar dice that they had to count success sides on to find the right one.

Next I thought if I should use different dice instead. So that Green choices are rolled with a D6, Yellow are rolled with a D8 and red are rolled with a D12.

I just can't decide if this is a good idea or not? Would it look to complicated to open a box and find a multitude of different dice in various colours?

Grall Ritnos
Joined: 02/07/2011
One easier option

If different types of dice work best for your game, go for that. One easier strategy would be to just use a single numbered die with different difficulty levels defined. To adapt your first idea using a standard d6, a green difficulty challenge passes on 3-6, a yellow challenge passes on 4-6 and a red challenge passes on 5-6. Perhaps this is grossly over simplified within the broader context of your game, and I can appreciate that multiple types and colors of dice seem cooler, but sometimes the simplest solutions can be best. Good luck with the rest of your design.

Joined: 04/30/2013
exact reason why i made my

exact reason why i made my card game black and white

one thing you might be misconcepting is that colorblindness is the same for all ppl who are colorblind, well its not. its a matter of degree, for example, my friend is color blind between the colors red and blue, looks the same to him, he cant tell red from blue, but he sure can tell green from red or blue

on another topic of thought, not being color blind only means that you are able to differentiate between all colors, we are all trained from young to apply a name to a color, we can agree that a color is called red, but might see completely different things.

we agree that "red" is called red, not because "red" is red, but because red looks different from every other color we encounter, so we can agree that all other colors are not defined as "red" except red

next is your idea of a solution. using 3 different types of dice to represent power seems like a good idea, eliminates the problem you are worried about since the dice all look completely different from each other, unless the probabilities you require are better represented by 3 custom D6s

im going to assume you have the success threshold be something like 4 by default, possibly this threshhold is reduced by stats, then it would be easier to reach that number with a bigger die

sounds alot like the runescape's combat stats system now that i think about it, accuracy reduces the threshold number increasing chances of hitting, and power increases the size of the number being rolled, translating to damage

ckleach's picture
Joined: 02/26/2013
Same deal here

There are SSSOOOOO many games on the market that do not consider or cater to people with colour blindness. And as a friend pointed out in my word game, if I was to use colours and dice with colour indicators on it, I might want to consider making it accessible to those that have visual condition.

Simply put, there are a number of ways to patch a game design so that it accommodates colour blindness but it's come to the point where simple is better. I've considered

  • Icons - Give you the best use of space and visual acknowledgement, regardless of language or literacy level.
  • Spelling or abbreviations - Using BL instead of blue or R instead of red (assuming your palette is limited to 2-4 colours and do not have the same starting letter)

This in turn can also be stylized so that it doesn't clutter the canvas/object and adds a creative zest to your work. Always keep in mind though that this cannot be applied across all mediums. Missing some type of identifying style or icon might be the best way to go about it, so I've learned. Here is a post about my dice that provides an example. Keep in mind, if it's not noted in a legend or in the documentation, the relevance of an acronym or symbol will be lost --

Good to see others are crossing this bridge as well.

jarekrs's picture
Joined: 05/28/2013
I am colorblind

I am colorblind and I actually have a more severe case where all similar colors (neon green and yellow, red and brown, purple and pink, etc.) are hard to differentiate. With that said, go ahead and make the red/yellow/green dice. Just use the boldest "original crayola 8 marker" color scheme and you should be just fine.

larienna's picture
Joined: 07/28/2008
Am am a lighter color blind,

Am am a lighter color blind, and I think the solution is to use colors that are less subject to color blindness and sometimes it's about using the right tint.

For example, certain people mix up yellow and lime green. So use another kind of green, or maybe turquoise.

Another idea is to have a special icon for the "1" face, so that most of the time you can identify the die by finding the icon. Only if you roll a 6 you'll have to turn the die around.

ckleach's picture
Joined: 02/26/2013
Design would dictate otherwise

As a graphic designer, design would dictate you not use certain colours together irregardless. Someone using yellow and Lime green in the same instance may be rare, but in the case with highlighters or neon colours, I can understand the use. And thank you for backing the iconic representation idea. It is by far the safest way to convey the message without greatly reworking the visual presentation of the game.

As for using colours that are less subjective to colour blindness won't always work either. It's more of about the hue of the colour than it is the shade. So even if the colours look odd, you're colourblind so it's nothing new. It is however distinguishable, so artistically speaking it still hold some value. There are various levels of colour blindness, as you are probably very aware of, but that doesn't mean a designer has to muddy up his/her design for the sake of representing a colour. You point of using another shade may work but ultimately using another colour entirely would probably bet the best option.

If a game has a colour driven mechanic, then consider that something you might want to stray away from -- OR better yet (before you all jump down my throat), condition your perspective of the tone and adjust accordingly. I would assume in most cases if you're colour vision deficient, you'd know what colours may not be perceived correctly. Sticking with the "crayola" basics is always a consideration when it comes to game design. Colour blind or not, if there are greatly varying hues and few colours to begin with it shouldn't pose as a problem for the color vision deficient.

If everyone's so concerned about colour blindness, what ever happened to large text and high contrast for those that can see but are categorized as legally blind? Or how about small pieces or irregular shapes for those those dextrously challenged? We can get all 'Aaccessibility-Correct' in here, but really, no need to.

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