While not as disruptive as other types of bodily impairments, color blindness can be a significant problem for gamers depending on its severity. Color coded level design, interactive objects and HUD elements are staples in games and Microsoft may have found a way to make these features more apparent to colorblind players.
Until now, specific implementations of color blindness features were entirely up to the game developers themselves, which often meant limited or non-existent support. Instead, Microsoft’s latest proprietary system would offload this accessibility feature into dedicated software and possibly work in all or most games on the market.
Like the recent Xbox split-screen multiplayer patent, Microsoft’s color correction patent was filed a while ago, though it only became widely accessible to the public a few days ago. The patent describes a specialized color correction technology that would compensate for color blindness by applying a color transformation layer to produce an appropriately altered image during post-processing. This would, in theory, allow Xbox to offer solutions for virtually all types of color blindness in one fell swoop and may not even need any input from the game’s developers.
The fact that Microsoft is working on a comprehensive color correction filter isn’t particularly surprising, considering the fact that Xbox keeps getting more accessibility options all the time. Historically, Microsoft has been quite dedicated to the idea of enabling and empowering every gamer. Since color blindness is a relatively widespread disability, it makes sense that the company would try to alleviate the condition with a proprietary software solution that could apply fixes and fixes on the fly.
A few years ago, Microsoft revealed its Xbox Adaptive Controller, which offered the most adaptable and customizable gaming device on the market. The applied design philosophy was that it should allow the majority of disabled players to optimize their gaming experience with as little fuss as possible, removing many accessibility barriers that previously existed. The color correction patent, then, seems like a logical extension of the same philosophy Microsoft has had for years.
While the color correction patent is widely available for all to read, the company still has a few tricks up its proverbial sleeve. Rumors suggest that Microsoft is trying to optimize the Xbox Series X chipset, which may result in a smaller and “thinner” version of the console in the future. However, this is unconfirmed, and if true, it is unlikely to be revealed before the color correction system is implemented.
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