DESIGNED FOR ACCESSIBILITY

They Colored Outside the Lines

The story behind Tint’s innovative color-blind mode.

Apple Arcade

tint.

A relaxing color-mixing puzzle

VIEW

When Jakob Lykkegaard was creating his painterly puzzle game, Tint, he asked a longtime friend to test an early version, figuring it would be helpful to get a fresh take on the project.

But his friend apologized when he realized the game was all about blending colors, recalls Lykkegaard. “He said, ‘I didn’t tell you, but I’m color-blind.’ I actually didn’t know.”

Lykkegaard and his team at Bangkok-based Lykke Studios didn’t want Tint to exclude the estimated 300 million people in the world with some form of color blindness. So they got to work.

“We’re in games because we like to create beautiful things and solve small problems,” says Lykkegaard. “This is just another problem we had to solve.”

Most games that offer a color-blind mode swap out certain hues to make numbers easier to read or enemies easier to spot. That wasn’t an option with Tint. To solve its levels, you strategically blend watercolors—blue and yellow to create green, or red and blue to create purple, for instance.

So Lykke Studios added a visual element that builds on the game’s underlying aesthetic: pattern. With color-blind mode toggled on, a grid of squares appears with blue strokes, for example, while dots pepper the yellow ones.

We went through three or four different kinds of patterns before we found the most aesthetically pleasing and functional.

And these patterns blend together as harmoniously as their hues. Mix blue and yellow and you get green with dots nestled beautifully inside the squares.

As elegant and simple as the solution may seem in retrospect, it didn’t come easily.

“We went through three or four different kinds of patterns before we found the most aesthetically pleasing and functional,” says Lykkegaard. “It was tricky to get it to look natural.”

[Image description: In this puzzle, striped red meets dotted yellow to form orange with stripes and dots. And blue square paint passes through yellow to create green with dots and squares.]

What Lykkegaard and his crew assumed would require a couple days of work turned into three weeks of experimentation, fine-tuning, and playtesting.

All of which was time well spent, says Lykkegaard.

“We wanted to create a game for everyone, and we can’t really say it’s for everyone if we’re leaving people out.”

    Apple Arcade

    tint.

    A relaxing color-mixing puzzle

    VIEW

Subscribe to Apple Arcade to start playing Tint. To see more of the over 100 games you can unlock with Apple Arcade, check out the Arcade tab on the App Store.