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Motion Blur And Other Effects

Motion blur is one of the biggest talking points in every game forum. You’ll also find that it’s usually in the form of “How do I turn this off?”. Motion blur, as well as other popular effects used in modern gaming engines, are used for a variety of different reasons. Other examples are Chromatic Aberration, which creates the illusion of a bad camera lens, Depth of field, making things further away seem fuzzy, and shaky camera, just to name a few.

Most of the time, if you ask a games developer why these are in their game, they will tell you it’ the style of the game. It’s the look they foresaw when conjuring their dream video game. This is a valid reason, should it be true, as all the effects above are found in film. Seeing as millions of video games were inspired by movies, this is to be expected A game like Red Dead Redemption, for example, is clearly an artistic retelling of a spaghetti western. Having film grain seep its way into games like this is generally accepted by the video game crowd, as we enjoy this sort of media looking like a movie.

However, when a game clearly isn’t designed to be seen out of a camera, such as FarCry, Call of Duty and Counter-Strike, motion blur and the like feels very out of character. These games, although taking inspirations from films, are meant to be a first person experience. (Far Cry: Blood dragon gets a pass on this one.) The lens that you’re looking through is the characters eyes, which do not create camera artefacts like light bloom. Motion blur is somewhat forgivable if it isn’t too heavy, as turning your head quickly in real life doesn’t result in a crystal clear image of whats portrayed in front of you, but in competitive games, it’s almost imperative that players can see everything available to them at all times.

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