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The issue of color coding dice and other game components for color blind seems to come up here occasionally.
I thought i might upload some pictures here to illustrate what dice of different colours will look like to people with reduced color sensitivity.
enjoy.

Most people only have a little colour blindness ("weakness") but aren't completely colour blind.

according to wikipedia:

Protanomaly ("green-weakness")(1% of males, 0.01% of females)
Deuteranomaly ("red-weakness")(most common—6% of males, 0.4% of females)
Tritanomaly ("blue-weakness")(equally rare for males and females [0.01% for both])
Protanopia ("green-blindness")(1% of males)
Deuteranopia ("red-blindness")(1% of males)
Tritanopia ("blue-blindness")(less than 1% of males and females)

So that is how common they are. If you group themtoegther as "red+green/weakness+full blindness" you're close to 10% of the male population.

I've taken all these screenshots after applying a color filter with color oracle: http://colororacle.org


edited to include a pic of one of the worst offenders of "i'm unplayable for the color blind": qwirkle








This is just another example of how difficult it is for people with red/green-blindness/weakness to see those colours.



a comparison of meeple source cubes
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Re: dice for the color blind
gvonl wrote:
So it looks like you would be better off buying the dollar tree dice then?
That wasn't really the point i was trying to make, but yeah, the issue with the chessex dice (and many othe rproducts) is that the red and green colours have very similar saturation and brightness.

You could always go for dark blue/light blue instead of green/red though.
I'd really love for chessex (and many other companies) to produce components in more colours though, maybe a mint or lime green that is easier to tell appart from red.
 
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Re: dice for the color blind
As to the Chessex dice pictured above, the "Protanopia" filter seems to show my perspective since, to my eyes, the first row and the third are the same. Counting colors from the left:

--#1, #2 and #3 are identical to me. Under bright light and examined close up I may be able to tell a difference.
--#5 & #8 appear to be very similar, although it isn't as easy to tell since they aren't right next to one another.
--#9 & #10 are also similar except for the dark pips in #10.

If all these colors were in a single game, I would be lost.

FYI, the colors that NEVER trip me up are: Yellow, White, Black and also "unfinished wood" if using wood tokens. (Note that a dark red or brown often appears black under low light, but I don't think that is a problem with my color blindness.) With those three or four colors, any other can be added without problem. Past that, good luck! I would suggest Silver, (light) Pink or Grey as another color unlikely to trip anybody up.

Why yellow is not used more frequently, I'll never understand. I know it is a common color in games, but certainly less common than Blue/Purple (impossible, I simply have to identify "brightness" of the color), Red/Green/Brown (often troublesome depending on shade and saturation) and Green/Orange (frequently impossible). If I had my way, the standard five player colors would be White, Black, Yellow, Red and Blue. No problem. Screw green, brown, orange and purple.

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Re: dice for the color blind
Chessex - 1, 4, 6, 8, 9 plus white might work for six player colours based on all of the first image. (I suspect orange in place of red would be a little too close to the yellow in Deuteranopia for easy distinguishing). 1 vs 9 might be a bit close in Dueteranopia combined with poor light, mind, so maybe 2 instead? Whcih is a different shade of purple.

Gives you the somewhat unusual combination of purple, pale blue, yellow, red, black and white.

Dollar Tree... The green and the red seem to work, but in poor light the green and the white might be similar to the colour blind, and I don't think colour of pips is a reliable indicator in game conditions, especially if they're used on other components. Also the green and the blue are similar in Tritanopia. For those, I suspect your safe colours are white, red, black, blue and yellow.

...But if at all possible, the easiest way of making games colour blind friendly is to use shapes as well as colours in all cases where you're coding something by colour...
 
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Re: dice for the color blind
No matter which dice picture I look at, a 6 still looks like a 6...
 
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Re: dice for the color blind
Good to point this out. The six may still be a six, but what colour is it? Thats the question. I think size could be a solution. Or for qwirkle, pattern would be a solution (on the colour or the tile).

My 2 cents : )
 
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Re: dice for the color blind
Gizensha wrote:
I suspect your safe colours are white, red, black, blue and yellow.

Exactly.
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Re: dice for the color blind
ACK ACK wrote:
As to the Chessex dice pictured above, the "Protanopia" filter seems to show my perspective since, to my eyes, the first row and the third are the same. Counting colors from the left:

--#1, #2 and #3 are identical to me. Under bright light and examined close up I may be able to tell a difference.
--#5 & #8 appear to be very similar, although it isn't as easy to tell since they aren't right next to one another.
--#9 & #10 are also similar except for the dark pips in #10.


I'll just comment on that if you don't mind (and thanks for posting your impression, it's really interesting and educational!).

1,2 and 3 are different shades of (from left to right) pink (or purpleish pink) over purple/violet and a dark blue.

5&8 are possibly the strongest complimentary contrast possible: dark gren and red!

9&10 are in fact the same black.
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Re: dice for the color blind
Thanks for this. I was recently deciding between Dollar Tree and Chessex and went with Chessex.


Makes one wonder though, what do the fancier Chessex dice look like in these filters?

For example blue/black and red/black Gemini dice (two colors that fade/blend into each other)...



 
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Re: dice for the color blind
Thank you this is really useful information
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Re: dice for the color blind
PlowStr8 wrote:
Thanks for this. I was recently deciding between Dollar Tree and Chessex and went with Chessex.


Makes one wonder though, what do the fancier Chessex dice look like in these filters?

For example blue/black and red/black Gemini dice (two colors that fade/blend into each other)...



The red vs. blue should generally be okay, though i'm not sure about the whole "mixed" effect. It's something i personally don't like too much as i find it to be a little too dependant on the suroundings and light.

Don't worry though about the chessex, they "feel" much better than those cheap 1$-dice.

Also don't take my pics as the final word on color. There is also the aspect of lightning, photography and screen-calibration. The pics are just to give people a rough idea of how colors and color blindness work.
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Re: dice for the color blind
This is all interesting (I have a little color blindness myself) but it seems to be missing a crucial thing: what are the best colors to use to reduce problems for color-blind people? It would be awesome to have a range of 6 different color codes that I know will reduce problems without having to resort to symbols.

If the answer is "It depends" then we need more information:
Which of those conditions is most common, and how common?
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Re: dice for the color blind
dennisthebadger wrote:
the issue with the chessex dice (and many other products) is that the red and green colours have very similar saturation and brightness.

This is so important. Almost all the Chessex dice have the same level of brightness. Excepting #4 & #6, my brain classifies all the colors as "dark." I was very surprised to read that #1 is pink. Now, if that were a pastel pink and whichever one is green (#5?) were a pastel green, then no problem.

For instance, the Qwirkle colors are easily identifiable by me. Qwirkle #2 & #6 (purple/blue?) are distinguishable because #2 is much darker than #6. The closest two for my eyes are #1 & #5 (orange/green?), but I probably wouldn't have any problem with them in good light. The red is dark enough to stand out.

I often use relative brightnesses to (try to) distinguish colors. If I see something that, for me, could be blue or purple, I will name it "purple" if it is a dark tone and "blue" if it is light. That is simply due to years of experience learning that purple is generally a dark color and rarely bright. (Also, purple is much rarer "in the wild," so if I have to guess I go with blue.)
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Re: dice for the color blind
ACK ACK wrote:
As to the Chessex dice pictured above, the "Protanopia" filter seems to show my perspective since, to my eyes, the first row and the third are the same. Counting colors from the left:

--#1, #2 and #3 are identical to me. Under bright light and examined close up I may be able to tell a difference.
--#5 & #8 appear to be very similar, although it isn't as easy to tell since they aren't right next to one another.
--#9 & #10 are also similar except for the dark pips in #10.

If all these colors were in a single game, I would be lost.

FYI, the colors that NEVER trip me up are: Yellow, White, Black and also "unfinished wood" if using wood tokens. (Note that a dark red or brown often appears black under low light, but I don't think that is a problem with my color blindness.) With those three or four colors, any other can be added without problem. Past that, good luck! I would suggest Silver, (light) Pink or Grey as another color unlikely to trip anybody up.

Why yellow is not used more frequently, I'll never understand. I know it is a common color in games, but certainly less common than Blue/Purple (impossible, I simply have to identify "brightness" of the color), Red/Green/Brown (often troublesome depending on shade and saturation) and Green/Orange (frequently impossible). If I had my way, the standard five player colors would be White, Black, Yellow, Red and Blue. No problem. Screw green, brown, orange and purple.


I greatly appreciate having read this. My favorite color is purple and I have always been upset it's not included in most games. I've started customizing games to include it. It never occurred to me that it may be excluded in deference to the color blind. Although most games include both red and green, so designers haven't put that much thought into it. Still, I may rethink my custom pieces now.
 
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Re: dice for the color blind
dennisthebadger wrote:
edited to include a pic of one of the worst offenders of "i'm unplayable for the color blind": qwirkle

For my money, the worst color choices in games for color blind people (and seem to trip up normally sighted people as well) are:

Through the Desert and
Mayfair Cosmic Encounter
Edit: Also Container

Also, many many games that use both green and orange in similar brightness levels. Those get me more frequently than red and green, since red is usually darker. See for instance Merchants of Amsterdam or Avalon Hill History of the World.
 
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Re: dice for the color blind
cornixt wrote:
This is all interesting (I have a little color blindness myself) but it seems to be missing a crucial thing: what are the best colors to use to reduce problems for color-blind people? It would be awesome to have a range of 6 different color codes that I know will reduce problems without having to resort to symbols.

If the answer is "It depends" then we need more information:
Which of those conditions is most common, and how common?

Most people only have a little colour blindness ("weakness") but aren't completely colour blind.

according to wikipedia:

Protanomaly ("green-weakness")(1% of males, 0.01% of females)
Deuteranomaly ("red-weakness")(most common—6% of males, 0.4% of females)
Tritanomaly ("blue-weakness")(equally rare for males and females [0.01% for both])
Protanopia ("green-blindness")(1% of males)
Deuteranopia ("red-blindness")(1% of males)
Tritanopia ("blue-blindness")(less than 1% of males and females)

So that is how common they are. If you group themtoegther as "red+green/weakness+full blindness" you're close to 10% of the male population.

But yes, it does depend. How many colours do you need?
If you need as few as 6: go with black and white, a blue and yellow, then eithr a second blue, different in brigtness from the first, a grey or you can go with a green/red combination, as long as the red and green shade are different in brightness/saturation.

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Re: dice for the color blind
cornixt wrote:
Which of those conditions is most common, and how common?

Deuteranopia is most common, affecting about 6% of men and 0.5% of women. Protanopia is next with about about 2% of men and 0.05% of women.
Tritanopia is quite rare.

So, about 8 out of every hundred gamers (maybe more since I expect men are overrepresented in the gamer population) will have some form of colorblindness. I've long lost my aversion to marking my games up. That usually works for me. And most games aren't hindered by asking "what color is that piece?", although it can slow a game down.
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Re: dice for the color blind
Somewhat off topic... But I teach web programming (on an introductory level), and try to inform my students to be aware of color-blindness, and that they should design websites to be friendly to people with those conditions (and, of course, there may be people who are completely blind for whom you want to be website-friendly).

More examples that illustrate the problem (from the perspective of web development):
Can Color-Blind Users See Your Site?

So this is an interesting thread to actually show some of the problems that can be encountered.
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Re: dice for the color blind
I don't tip often, but when I do, I tip Dos Equis.

Wait, that came out wrong.

That was a really interesting. I'm no game designer, but this certainly is something that will sit around in my head, taking up space... for future reference... of some sort.
 
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Re: dice for the color blind
dennisthebadger wrote:
If you group themtoegther as "red+green/weakness+full blindness" you're close to 10% of the male population.

But yes, it does depend. How many colours do you need?
If you need as few as 6: go with black and white, a blue and yellow, then eithr a second blue, different in brigtness from the first, a grey or you can go with a green/red combination, as long as the red and green shade are different in brightness/saturation.

Thanks. The red and green in different brightness/saturation is probably key, since those colors are pretty much expected despite having the largest group.

You inspired me to retake the colorblindness tests online, and I came out as somewhat mild red/green colorblind. This always confused me as a child since I could always tell them apart, except on the blob tests! I guess I can't rely on my own colorblindness to make these color decisions though, since it is too weak.
 
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Re: dice for the color blind
cornixt wrote:
dennisthebadger wrote:
If you group themtoegther as "red+green/weakness+full blindness" you're close to 10% of the male population.

But yes, it does depend. How many colours do you need?
If you need as few as 6: go with black and white, a blue and yellow, then eithr a second blue, different in brigtness from the first, a grey or you can go with a green/red combination, as long as the red and green shade are different in brightness/saturation.

Thanks. The red and green in different brightness/saturation is probably key, since those colors are pretty much expected despite having the largest group.

You inspired me to retake the colorblindness tests online, and I came out as somewhat mild red/green colorblind. This always confused me as a child since I could always tell them apart, except on the blob tests! I guess I can't rely on my own colorblindness to make these color decisions though, since it is too weak.

Interesting. Which test did you take (self-assessment is always a bit tricky…)?
If you want a more informative test try this onw:
http://www.xrite.com/online-color-test-challenge

I scored an 8 (which is probably also due to issues with color-representation/calibration of my screen).
 
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Re: dice for the color blind
ACK ACK wrote:

I was very surprised to read that #1 is pink.

If it sets your mind at rest, you should probably be aware: it's not what I'd call pink. It's a mid-tone purple, to my eye; in fact, it's very similar in hue and shade to the HTML colour simply named "purple". For it to be pink, it would have to be lighter.
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Re: dice for the color blind
Bichatse wrote:
ACK ACK wrote:

I was very surprised to read that #1 is pink.

If it sets your mind at rest, you should probably be aware: it's not what I'd call pink. It's a mid-tone purple, to my eye; in fact, it's very similar in hue and shade to the HTML colour simply named "purple". For it to be pink, it would have to be lighter.

I think technically the original dice would be described as a dark magenta or fuchsia.
The pictures makes it look a bit darker than it really is. The pic on amazon makes it look a bit brighter than it really is:
 


cheesex calls it "light purple".
 
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Re: dice for the color blind
dennisthebadger wrote:

I think technically the original dice would be described as a dark magenta or fuchsia.
The pictures makes it look a bit darker than it really is.

Well, put it this way then: the colour in the picture at the top of this thread is definitely not 'pink'. ;-)

(I'd tend to agree, if it's somewhere between those two colours, then 'dark magenta' is probably as good a name for it as any.)
 
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Re: dice for the color blind
Zub3ri wrote:
My favorite color is purple and I have always been upset it's not included in most games. I've started customizing games to include it. It never occurred to me that it may be excluded in deference to the color blind.
Actually, I think purple is rare mostly because color conventions were set back when it was more difficult/expensive to produce than other colors. That's also why purple is associated with royalty. According to that linked article, we've had cheap purple dyes for less than 2 centuries.
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