Mass Effect 2 text illegibility on SD TVs a design decision

ARS: Mass Effect 2 relies heavily on dialog and story to grab gamers, but many playing the game are having problems reading the text. The problem is most acute for those with standard-definition sets or those with smaller high-definition televisions. There is a 14-page thread in the official forum with gamers complaining about the text, and we've had readers e-mailing us about the problem as well.

"I can barely make out what some of the words are, even on my friend's HD TV it's nearly microscopic, very annoying," one annoyed gamer wrote. "On ME1 I enjoyed reading about planets and so forth, now I nearly go blind from trying to read blurry small text on ME2."

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BigKev453181d ago

It's 2010, buy a HDTV already!

TheDudeAbides3181d ago

true, get anything hd, 720p pc monitor is better than standard tv

TotalPS3Fanboy3181d ago

They can't afford an HDTV yet.

My advice, buy the PC version so they can actually see and be able read the text.

Major_Tom3181d ago

Buy the PC version for;

Real anti-aliasing
Real graphics
Faster loading
No disc swapping
Better controls

Michael-Jackson3181d ago (Edited 3181d ago )

360 doesn't need hd tvs :), but for ME2 it does.

TheIneffableBob3181d ago

A PC monitor with 1680x1050 or 1920x1200 resolution can be found for as low as $150.

MerkinMax3181d ago

If you actually owned the PC version you would know that there are no in game settings for anti-aliasing...

bioshock12213181d ago

This they have gotten pretty cheap now so I really don't see why anyone would not buy one. Technology is only gonna move forward and you have move along with it.

Darkstorn3181d ago

I don't have an HDTV and am not going to be getting one any time soon. HDTVs may be mainstream for gamers, but only 1/4 of American households have HDTVs, even less in the UK.

It really bothers me that I wasn't able to read anything in MGS4 (I didn't even know that weapons were customizable until my second playthrough because I couldn't read anything).

Shame on BioWare for not at least having a setting to allow us SDTV gamers to read text (then again, I'm playing ME2 on my computer, so consider me lucky).

raztad3181d ago

This is a serious issue. I'm surprised how many gamers are still using SDTV sets. I makes sense tough. Many are just kids or teens playing in the TV spared by mom and dad.

Major_Tom3181d ago (Edited 3181d ago )

ATi Catalyst

Nvidia control panel

People like yourself make it easy to troll when you don't know what you're talking about :).

dirthurts3181d ago

Forcing AA in ATI CCC doesn't work. Not sure about Nvidia...
but no luck on ME2 with AA so far unless they patch it in.

JsonHenry3181d ago

Who cares if there are in game settings for AA?! Force it through your video cards software!

Bubbles_Kitty_Cat3181d ago

I have a 50" Samsung plasma.

Just let me know what parts you want to read and I will tell you what it says. :D

MerkinMax3181d ago (Edited 3181d ago )

You've just made it even more obvious you don't own the game. You can't force it with the Nvidia or ATI software. nTuner or downsampling are the only ways I've heard of and nTuner was unsuccessful for me. Seriously Tom, go away!

Lich1203181d ago

I don't know about ME2, but forcing AA is never as good as in game. For example, Global Agenda, when you force AA with it, half the icons disappear.

ReservoirDog3163181d ago

Yeah, I remember this happened to me with Dead Rising on the 360. That sucked cause you had to read the messages then janitor left you on your phone thing. But only have HDTVs now so yeah, not a problem for me.

Sucks for those who don't have one.

Remember, be nice people. Not everyone can afford stuff we're lucky enough to get. Some people just can't get one.

Letros3181d ago

Catalyst 10.1 hotfix enables AA in ME2

DSI3181d ago

Sound the alarm! aaaaaaarrrrrrr! AAAAAAAARRRRRR! Emergency! Emergency! Emergency! Mass Effect II is doing too well, Release the hounds, somebody blog something negative about it the jealousy is unbearable! Attention all hater, report to your duty stations! RED ALERT! /sarcasm

Rush3181d ago (Edited 3181d ago )

Yeah because people that can't afford a HDTV can afford a gaming pc....

And its good to know not everyone's rich like yourself.

MerkinMax3181d ago

That is the monitor I have. Connect my PS3, 360 and PC to it. It's pretty good people.

And I stand corrected about the ATi Catalyst. I did not know it allowed for AA now. Now only if NVIDIA would do something similar....

Rockox3181d ago

I've got an old 27" Sony Trinitron and I can't see the text worth a damn in this game. My TV's smallness never really bothered me until now, so my wife and I might go pick up an HDTV next weekend.

So the small text in ME2 may be a blessing in disguise...

baum3181d ago

Who cares if the game is slow (not like that's a bad thing, but you know, it's the kind of games that Xbox fanboys hate, that is unless they are "exclusive" to 360) or unplayable on SDTVs or not really a graphical masterpiece or that the character animations are stiff by 2010 standards, let's hand out a 10 out of 10 because a 10 doesn't really mean anything anymore.

Rush3181d ago

Seriously just stop typing before you make an even bigger A-hole out of yourself...

Shepherd 2143181d ago

Mommy and daddy may have bought you an HDTV, but people who struggle with gas/car insurance payments/bills/food/priorities have trouble forking over around 500 cash for a increase in resolution when they have a perfectly good working SDTV that does a decent job at displaying great experiences.

Some of you people need to get in touch with reality.

shadow27973180d ago

PS3 is hooked up to my 46" HDTV in my Den. X360 is hooked up to my 26" SDTV in my room.

All games should be able to be played in both definitions. Acting like this is somehow the consumers' fault is just plain ignorance.

I've yet to play Mass Effect 2, but if I can't read the writing, I won't be happy. Mass Effect is legible, though not easily, so I don't have high hopes for ME2. What a shame.

bjornbear3180d ago

a massive phillips, so the games look good,but the resolution is horrible, and i have this problem sometimes with games, but its minimal =)

sucks for ME2 SD tv gamers =( i hate it when it happens...

and no not EVERYONE IN THE WORLD with a console can afford an HD TV at the moment...thats reality =/

execution173180d ago

fear 1 have some issues like this? barely even read whenever text came on the screen

Nihilism3180d ago (Edited 3180d ago )

Nhancer works like a charm

8aa 60 frames constant, dinner is done.


Nhancer works fine, i'll grab you some screen shots



you can see jagged lines around the outside of the door frame etc in the first, none in the second.

+ Show (26) more repliesLast reply 3180d ago
kissmeimgreek3181d ago

yah i hate having an SD tv... im having such a tough time reading the text. but its worth it. way to good of a game to let one thing stop me from playing it.

edwineverready3181d ago (Edited 3181d ago )

oooh sorry I forgot it's a xbox360 exclusive they are used to old outdated hardware.

Conando3181d ago (Edited 3181d ago )

They are also used to the best games on any current gen console. Zing!

The Xbox hardware was superior to the PS2's hardware, but which console came out on top there? The PS2, no competition. Graphics aren't everything. Unless, of course, you're a PS3 fanboy, in which case that's pretty much the only thing you have to boast about these days.

rawd3180d ago (Edited 3180d ago )


Meus Renaissance3181d ago

This has always been an issue with some games.

ExposingLames3181d ago

good decision, people still into gaming are doing themselves wrong playing on a SDTV anyways....they deserve not to be able to read the text lol