I found a program that allows you to change resolution when running a game and switch back afterwards, saving/restoring your icon positions on the desktop. So, I tried running the game at a lower resolution and guess what? It really didn't do much at all the resolve the font issues. The one really thin font that is used in some places (it appears to be about 1 pixel wide) is still really, really hard on the eyes. So, I don't think adding game resolution settings is really going to solve anything.
I did a lot of searching to see what's been said about this issue in the past and found out that it's been a problem reported here over and over again and mentioned in many of the game reviews. From what I could find, Matrix has been pretty much silent on the issue but I did see where a beta tester said that the fonts were hard coded and don't expect a fix anytime soon. That was some time ago.
Given the above, we can eliminate some sugested potential fixes that Matrix/Codeforce might reasonably employ:
1) Font scaling is not going to be an option due to the hard coded fonts.
2) Adding the ability to change game resolution will not really help due to problematic readibility with some the fonts themselves
So what does that leave us with? I actually think Badken hit it pretty much on the head with his post:
There are a couple of problems with readability with the game. The most important one is obviously font size, but also the design of the font and the contrast of the colors used could be improved. The specific font that's used has a lot of densely packed vertical lines, which makes letter forms difficult to distinguish. Notably, the bold version of the font is *much* better than the thin version that is used for most text in the game. Color contrast, the other issue, can be really bad in some cases: for example, dark blue on gray or dark blue on black are VERY hard to read because of the way the eye perceives the color blue. If you're going to use blue on a dark background, you need to give it a lighter high contrast shadow to make it legible. The default text color in the game is not very readable either. It's a medium-dark grey on black, and there just isn't enough contrast to make things out clearly.
I have a feeling that merely adjusting the text color, making it brighter, creating higher contrast between text and background, would help a lot of people. A bigger font (or using the bold font, which has better spacing built in) would help more, but I realize that might cause some screen layout headaches. An alternative to resizing screens would be giving players the option to use a different font which was better designed for reading at small sizes.
I agree that it is the design of at least one of the fonts that is more the issue than the size. Some of the fonts are extremely clear. There's only one of them, the really thin one, that is really hard to read. If they could just try to address this one, really narrow issue by replacing/improving that one font and maybe some of the contrast issues and not get into any kind of massive overall font fix, I'd be happy.
I guess my questiion is if someone from Matrix or Codeforce could please comment here on this just to let us know if a limited fix like that is even possible? I did a lot of searching but didn't see where anyone official had ever weighed in on this. Even if the answer is "no, we can't do anything" that would be fine. I'd just accept it and move on. But it would be nice to hear at least something.
< Message edited by StarWolf -- 12/5/2011 4:38:11 PM >