A recently revealed colorblind filter for Tekken 8 is negatively impacting disabled players with issues like nausea and migraines. While accessibility tools like colorblind options help to differentiate important on-screen information like opponents and their health bars, this setting is preventing some disabled individuals from viewing matches altogether.
X/Twitter user SJS | Gatterall shared a 38-second clip of a brief match with the filter activated, stating, “Why is no one talking about the colorblind accessibility of Tekken 8. Literally no game has done this.”
Why is no one talking about the color blind accessibility of Tekken 8. Literally no game has done this. pic.twitter.com/i8qdUYwpPP
— SJS | Gatterall (@itwhiffed) December 27, 2023
The video showcases a match with the background stylized after an uncolored comic panel. The fighter on the left is defined by vertical black lines that consistently move, and their opponent on the right is defined by horizontal black lines that follow the movement of the player. Currently, the video has over 9 million views.
Members of the disabled community took to the social media platform to voice their concerns. Game Accessibility Lead at EA, Morgan Baker, posted “Please stop tagging me in the Tekken 8 ‘colorblind’ stripe filters. It’s already induced an aura migraine for me, and I can’t afford to get another one right now, or worse. Appreciate y’all.”
Accessibility consultant and advocate Ian Hamilton echoed Baker’s statement, encouraging other X/Twitter users to stop sharing the video to prevent harming others. In a reply to his post, Hamilton discussed the overall problems of colorblind filters, stating “[I]f you have achromatopsia then you’re sensitive to brightness and contrast. Filters aren’t how to approach colourblindness in general, the other filters have issues too, e.g. the tritanopia one changed everything to green and purple with isn’t helpful for tritanopia.”
Other X/Twitter users expressed their concerns, as well. User One-Winged Bard stated “Terrible migraine since I saw that s**t… Can’t even sleep because of the pain….” Accessibility and DEI consultant, Tarja
Porkka-Kontturi posted “Striped filter gave me instant vertigo just from a 2-3 second clip that I accidentally saw. It’s hazardous.”
Game Director of the Tekken series, Katsuhiro Harada took to X/Twitter to defend the varying colorblind filters. In an extensive post, he noted his team has received “positive feedback” relating to the accessibility settings, arguing that “A few people, albeit very few, have either misunderstood the accessibility options we are trying, or have only seen the video without actually trying them out in the demo play.” He also noted that he and his team have “never claimed or publicized that these options cover all players’ color vision (although it has been talked about by a favorable community as a result).”
For more information on Tekken 8, check out the official story trailer, Yoshimitsu’s official reveal and gameplay trailer, as well as IGN’s final preview of the game ahead of its launch on January 26, 2024 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, and PC. A demo is currently available for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, and Steam.
Grant Stoner is a disabled journalist covering accessibility and the disabled perspective in video games. When not writing, he is usually screaming about Pokémon or his cat, Goomba on Twitter.