Battlefield 3 not getting colour grading options after all

On a post at the Mordor HQ forums , spotted by PCGamesN , DICE staffer Mikael Kalms has reversed a previous statement that DICE would allow players to turn off the colour-grading which gives Battlefield its muted, cold aesthetic.

So, here we go again. The saga began when devs suggested that modders trying to alter the colour palette of the game might inadvertently fall foul of anti-cheat measures and find themselves banned from the game. The ensuing outcry led DICE to suggest it would implement such an option with the next patch of the game. But now it seems the company has thought better of that, with Kalms reproducing an official statement saying, "we are proud of the visual identity of Battlefield 3 and do not wish to change it."

I have some sympathy with DICE here, in as much as letting players essentially turn-off of the game's entire aesthetic would be to partly disown the exquisite craft of the company's talented artists. On the other hand, this already occurs in some sense, as you can't ensure a visual parity across the very varied PC playerbase. And if you start to be too dictatorial about how and why people enjoy your game, you begin to betray the reality that games, and particularly multiplayer games, are experiences created in partnership with the players. It's not like they are going to stop people acting like gigantic berks in Battlefield - indeed, that's often part of the fun - so why prevent players from choosing to make the game (in DICE's view) ever so slightly uglier?

Here's Mikael Kalms' post in full:

After discussing this further with my colleagues, we have decided to not implement this feature. This is the studio's take on this matter, and I support this decision:

“As a studio, it is extremely important for us at DICE to have a unique identity in our games, not only from a gameplay perspective, but visually as well. While we appreciate that some players might want a slightly different look to the game, we are proud of the visual identity of Battlefield 3 and do not wish to change it.”

I apologize for getting anybody's hopes up, and if you have any further questions on this subject, I will refer back to the above statement.