Balan Wonderworld's seizure-inducing effects will be fixed in a launch update

Balan Wonderworld
(Image credit: Square Enix)

Square Enix has confirmed that a potentially seizure-inducing visual effect discovered in pre-release footage of Balan Wonderworld will be resolved, thanks to a day one patch arriving alongside 3D platformer's launch later today.

A musical action-platformer headed up by Sonic Team veterans Yuji Naka and Naoto Ohshima, Balan Wonderworld launches on Steam later today. But with full playthroughs already landing on YouTube, fans discovered that the game's climactic boss features rapidly flashing lights that risk triggering seizures in certain players.

Seizure warnings for the following video, obviously. The effects hit at 11:35
and 12:40.

The effect seems inconsistent, appearing in some video captures while notably absent from others, suggesting this isn't an intentional effect as was Cyberpunk 2077's seizure-triggering braindance visuals. Rather, this appears to be a bugged effect, one that may stem from per-platform graphics settings.

Fortunately, Balan Wonderworld will be accompanied by a day one patch when it arrives later this afternoon. In a statement to PC Gamer, the publisher explains that this patch resolves the triggering effects, along with a number of issues that arose during the game's pre-release demo.

"Please ensure that you install the Day 1 Patch before playing Balan Wonderworld. We have received reports of a photo-sensitive epilepsy risk from a potential flashing bug if playing the game un-patched. The Day 1 Patch prevents this issue as well as enhances the overall play experience."

Balan's demo was met with a fairly negative reception, with Polygon noting that the game's costume-changing gimmick added "little joy or surprise to otherwise simplistic 3D platform-jumping". One patch might not spruce up all the game's mechanical flaws, but at least we can be fairly sure the game no longer risks setting off epileptic seizures. 

Natalie Clayton
Features Producer

20 years ago, Nat played Jet Set Radio Future for the first time, and she's not stopped thinking about games since. Joining PC Gamer in 2020, she comes from three years of freelance reporting at Rock Paper Shotgun, Waypoint, VG247 and more. Embedded in the European indie scene and a part-time game developer herself, Nat is always looking for a new curiosity to scream about—whether it's the next best indie darling, or simply someone modding a Scotmid into Black Mesa. She also unofficially appears in Apex Legends under the pseudonym Horizon.