Getting sick of gaming? (Motion sickness and fields of View on consoles).

I've broken my all too long blogging embargo to talk about gaming. Something I've never written about before, and that I'm a casual dipper in and out at most.

I've decided to get a Playstation 4 when I can. I've made the decision over the Xbox One, which is a whole other subject. Though this decision and the research leading to it has led to a little 'jimmy rustling'.

This time it's about me getting annoyed with a growing problem for many it seems. It is motion sickness in gaming. This has been present in some form or another ever since the dawn of console gaming and probably way before. (remember those giant 2 page warnings about epilepsy on every Playstation 1 game booklet?

I would imagine that most modern games have to abide by some fairly strict health and safety legislation, just like every other product.
But one thing that is going under the radar I believe is problems with field of view.

For those that don't know, field of view is what you can see as a player basically. How far up, down, left and right. In real life, you have peripheral vision of course, which I imagine is very hard to replicate on a game without a very flashy screen/monitor.
There is a balance between seeing enough so that the view looks natural, and that doesn't give too much of the game away.

My problems all started with Borderlands 2 on the Xbox 360.
Man, I had been looking forward to this game for ages. I played through the first Borderlands with a stranger and made friends with him. I loved the game and its one of the few times I was a completist about it. (usually I'm quite casual about gaming as i said earlier). I was a significant game, as far as games can be significant to me.
I bought Borderlands 2 at full price (something else I never do), and started playing with great excitement and child like wonder.
After literally 10 minutes of playing the game, I felt terrible. My head was heavy, my neck ached, my eyes felt hot. I thought I was coming down with something.
I tried again, feeling fine, the next day. Same thing happened. My Sherlock Holmes type deduction led me to believe that the game was doing this to me....... TO GOOGLE!
There I learned that I was not alone. It isn't a problem that affects everyone (my son can play the game fine), but for those that have an intolerance to close fields of view it is a game breaker. You simply cannot play it. £40 down the pan. Cheers.

                                     An easy way to look at the problem is how much space the
                                     gun takes up, and how much you can't see at the sides.

To make things worse, I heard that a lot of people had trouble with the first Borderlands. (I did not), and for PC, Gearbox software ended up including a FOV slider due to demand. Why on earth wouldn't they consider this for us console users? Maybe by this point they were too busy doing a hatchet job on Aliens Colonial Marines. (yet another blog topic).
Sortly after all this, I stopped gaming to concentrate on other things, but my interest has been aroused with the arrival of the next gen consoles. I can't resist a gadget. Back into gaming, I've fired up the old Xbox and have raided my sons game collection. Far Cry 3, another game I wanted to play for ages. It has been out a while now so this might be old news to most, but it was a hotly anticipated title with a load of hype. I was expecting great things. What I got was Borderlands 2 syndrome.

Next, seeing as I'm about to drop £400 plus on a PS4 I thought it best to check out Killzone videos on the PS4. (The one launch game that I would be excited about). Guess what.  Motion sickness due to a small FOV. Damn.

On PC there is a field of view slider on many games. Developers... WE NEED THIS ON CONSOLES.
This isn't a small problem I think, and there are probably many people who experience varying degrees of illness after gaming, and just put it down to eye strain or whatever. I'd be interested to hear about anyone having similar experiences.

It's so irritating that the makers of games these days don't consider this, or know about it. A simple Google search throws up loads of complaints about it. What with the graphics, sociability of gaming, the advances in research, it should be taken for granted that the means to not feel like shite should be included within every game. The problem seems to be spreading with the development of graphical capabilities. I'm hoping the gaming industry wakes up to it asap as it could be doing untold long term damage.


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