If you've been enjoying Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic on the Nintendo Switch this weekend, one thing you've no doubt noticed is the overly large combat text box that comes up whenever you are engaged in battle.
Many players thought it was a bug at first, but Aspyr - the developer behind this version of BioWare's legendary RPG - has seemingly confirmed it's as intended. Aspyr's community manager detailed this over on Discord (via r/kotor):
"Hi guys! Hope you're already enjoying the game. The combat text box is intended behaviour but we are always happy to hear player feedback! You can forward it to our dev team via [email protected] or by submitting a request on support.aspyr.com. Thank you so much for your support!"
To further clarify, the same Aspyr team member explained how the size of this box was also as intended:
"I asked regarding the text box size and it was indeed intended, as far as I know."
Players are now calling for Aspyr to "fix" it by offering more text bubble sizes, or by allowing it to be disabled in the options menu. Again, though - if you're finding it to be a problem, let Aspyr's development team know.
And for anyone curious, this is our own capture from an older version on Steam - the combat text box is far less noticeable:
Apart from this, Apsyr's latest Star Wars launch has gone relatively well, and is doing much better than its previous Switch release Star Wars: Republic Commando, which experienced quite a lot of issues at launch. Apart from the text box, how are you finding KOTOR on Switch so far? And if you haven't played what's considered to be one of the greatest RPG of all time, then check out our review.
Personally I'm a fan, as my eyesight is only getting worse and have had constant problems reading text boxes on other Switch games. I don't see any harm in making the text box size a setting in-game though.
I don't find it as distracting as most seem to, but I do think there's no reason for the box to be as big as it is. It's not even the text that's an issue, the box is just massive and has a ton of empty space. The Steam version's textbox is just fine, I don't know why Aspyr changed it for this port.
I've not played the game (ever) but that does look larger than it needs to be. Just the text itself would be fine, I'd think.
@Liam_Doolan So the follow up question would be "why?", did anyone ask?
I guess it could be an accessibility feature, but then another question pops up: why dark orange text against black background? It's pretty hard to read.
@Quarth probably cause we're old and it's a tiny screen. Ageism
Let’s design a really intrusive text box that ruins the whole field of vision! Gamers will love that
@Quarth Dev didn't elaborate, but yeah - I guess the team thought it would be an accessibility improvement if it was intended.
Maybe it was a design decision with handheld players in mind.
@jojobar Are you sure? I've only played the OG versions (Xbox and PC), but I watched some Android mobile footage and the combat text box looks more like what's in the Steam version.
Some of the UI on Switch looks the same as mobile though. I'm guessing the Switch version is closer in resemblance to the mobile (portable) release overall.
Why not introduce an opacity slider?
Gamers: "Adapt the UI to Switch's screen, you lazy devs!"
I assumed it was intentional... How do you accidentally make a screen larger than intended and not notice? It doesn't really bother me much, but they should patch in an option to make it smaller for those who find it bothersome.
If you turn subtitles off you also lose subtitles where there’s no voice acting either, that needs fixing.
@Reprise someone who’s been modding the Android version says the engine won’t support options for box size but that resizing it smaller is the work of minutes
@nhSnork I haven’t played yet, do you know if that’s generally the amount of text that gets displayed at once or is the box ever fuller?
The port is really good, but I do think they went a bit too far with the huge text. The Switch screen might be small, but it's not THAT small
I have a feeling that this is a mobile port. Seems like a lot of those have some HUGE text boxes or other UI elements.
@noobish_hat Switch Lite.
@Kid_Sickarus I haven't either, but gameplay videos seem to show a variety of message boxes, including fuller-packed ones closer to screen centre.
It,s way too big, it doesn't make any sense xD
There's a bug with the save games - it adds the time that the console is in sleep mode to the overall playtime of the save. Ie, play for 2 hours, standby the console for 24 hours then the next time you save it shows as 26 hours playtime.
@VIIIAxel It is not that they changed it, they just used the UI from the Xbox version. Which makes sense when both versions are played with a controller. But still, the battle banner doesn't look that bad on the Xbox version, maybe a side effect because of making the game widescreen?
@Liam_Doolan The game looks the exact same as the Xbox version.
The battle box also appears on the Xbox, but it seems to be outside the screen so you only see a blue line which is the bottom of the battle box.
...that's no moon. It's the combat text box area!
@kenyowa Well, to be fair, it's just the box that's bigger rather than the text here. But I totally agree with your point, and I think text in games has just gotten way too small in many cases. I know we can do all this high resolution stuff, but I think that should be simply to make text much sharper and cleaner to read rather than just making it smaller and smaller. At some point it just gets so small it's stupid, especially when displayed on smaller screens. Also, it's a total amateur error on many devs parts.
Reminds me of watching local stations during bad weather. Bottom right, massive station logo. Bottom, red banner with scrolling alert text. Upper screen, large map of your state to show where people are having the worst evening. And if lucky, the local weather person pops in every few minutes to tell you what all the screen icons had been doing already. So on the plus side, no alien weather person
Might as well make it a text based adventure instead with a text box that big.
@Liam_Doolan your right. i could have bet i saw it in a mobile version video but since i cannot find it anymore it's very likely not comming from the mobile version
Its okay just play it on a 50 inch tv
It's big for sure, but people are being a little dramatic I think lol.
Text is too small on the switch
Text is too large on the switch
Which one is it going to be people lol
@Yosti Yeah, the battle box definitely looks a bit different in the Xbox version.
It's fine, find something actually noteworthy to complain about if your boring life demands that sort of thing.
Can't say I am too bothered by the box. I have much more trouble with tiny text these days. As others have said, text size adjustment options in both directions are always welcome.
This is one of the few things that could potentially put me off buying the game at full price. A simple toggle to adjust the size of the UI would suffice, I think.
I will be emailing them just to ask about it. I’m glad they have an easy contact method for us to do that.
Honestly though even with the big box, this is still the definitive version of the game for me. It plays and feels better than the xbox and steam versions. I’ve really been enjoying playing it again!
As someone who mostly plays Switch in handheld mode these days, I appreciate large text. Small text is usually the issue.
One of the most tone deaf responses I've ever seen from a developer.
Triggered fanboy much? The game is nearly 20 years old and I have several other platforms I can play it on without a text box that takes up roughly 30% of the screen. Not to mention plenty of other games I can play right now. I've also seen numerous reviews that mentioned the size of the UI textbox being annoying so I'm hardly alone and there's a decent chance they'll fix it in a patch. It seems smarter to simply wait and see if they patch it, while potentially getting it a few dollars cheaper. Even if they don't fix it, I'd likely still grab it at a later date. November is a month loaded with releases and there's two holidays coming up. I feel like I can wait a little longer to play a game this old.
I'm open to hearing some reason I should go and download it ASAP. Is there some special content I'm missing on? Is the game going to be pulled off the Eshop if I wait? Or are your jimmies just a tad bit rustled that someone DARED to not rush out and buy it? I'm going with the latter on this one.
Fair enough, I find it equally clownish to care so much about what reason someone might have for not buying a nearly 20 year old game remastered on the Switch at full price. Maybe we should start a circus?
But whatever. The fact you blocked me proves how triggered you are over a simple comment. The fanboyism is strong with this one. I can only imagine how hard you took the 7/10 review score it got on Nintendolife. Must be sad being this salty.
Ok ppl. Instead of complain in the comments here, complain in an email and make yourself useful for once
I did my part. Now you do yours.
How is anyone supposed to know they are in combat playing that Steam version? Seriously though, yeah, that combat box is rather big. Does any other messaging get posted up there? Might be a one size fits all type deal going on.
How can a remaster of a 2003 game have a much worse UI?
Also... look at the textures on the floor. That's 20$ plus tip. Thank you.
I really want to get this game but my backlog is already ridiculous and I've already gotten DLC for Smash and ACNH recently. There's just too much to play.
I actually appreciate this feature. My eyes aren't quite what they used to be, and I enjoy not having to sit up too close to my tv to see the text. At this point in my life, it is the little things that I appreciate the most, and that includes my favorite video games. Makes the experience that much sweeter.
yeah, thats true. Noticed that I played for 8hrs just to take me off the ship in the beginning, lol
I'm not bothered by the text bubble at all. Yes, it's huge, but since the camera's vertical position is locked, it doesn't obscure any important details during combat, and you never lose sight of allies or enemies. I honestly don't even really notice it while I'm playing.
@GrailUK "Does any other messaging get posted up there?"
No, that bubble only appears during combat, and it's not even particularly distracting since all the action happens on the lower portion of the screen anyway. Compare the two screenshots in the article, and you will notice that the large bubble is not obscuring any significant details as you can still clearly see the enemy in the distance. I wouldn't be upset if Aspyr released a patch to make it smaller, but some people here are making a bigger deal out of than what is warranted, like the one fellow saying he refuses to buy the game because of it. Give me a break.
I really see no issue
If you're referring to me, I never said I "Refused" to buy it, I simply said it COULD potentially put me off from buying it, and I even stated in a follow up comment that if it never got patched, I'd likely buy it anyway. I'm simply waiting to see if they address the issue. Not only that, but I've seen gameplay of it, and it can literally cut off half the character's from the screen. The screenshot shown on NL isn't indicative of how it looks in every single instance. In some cases it's worse while in others, it's not so bad. Either way, I don't see how waiting to see if a potential issue with a game is addressed is a problem.
You KOTOR fanboys are overreacting way too much to a simple comment. Give me a break.
@Onion "I'm simply waiting to see if they address the issue."
The point is, it's really not an issue that needs to be addressed. Look at the screen shots in the article, and you will notice that there are interface elements in the Steam version of the game that cover up the exact same amount of screen space as the text bubble in the Switch version. Yes, the bubble gives the impression of being huge, and there's really no reason for it to be as large as it is (they could decrease the bubble by about 50% without reducing the font size) but it only appears during combat, and it does not in any way interfere with gameplay.
Except for me and numerous others, it IS an issue that they want addressed, enough so that this article exists and the developer had to defend the reason it was in there. The fact this article even exists proves you wrong.
I'll give you credit for being the first one to actually try and convince me it's not an issue (rather than get triggered and block me), but it annoys me a bit and I'm just waiting to see if they possibly address it. Like I said before, if they don't, it's not enough to stop me from buying it, but fixing or adjusting it in some way would help push me towards buying it sooner. I'm especially curious if they add in a slider of some kind for the whole UI.
Some of you are acting like it's somehow money out of your pocket. I'm literally just waiting before buying a game. Is this really so novel a concept? It really should not be that hard to wrap your brain around. At no point did I say I'm not buying it, or even refuse to buy it. Just WAITING. I should not need to defend my position 3 different times. Good grief. Even in my initial post on the matter, I simply said it "could" discourage me from getting it at full price, implying that I would get it on sale perhaps. I didn't bash the port or the game itself.
EDIT: Also just for some clarification (the below post reminded me of this), I'm also waiting for any possible other kinks to be addressed (someone above mentioned an issue with subtitles). Again, this should not be such a novel concept. In fact to give the port it's due credit, it looks to be extremely well done, but I think it will be better in a few months.
just to name a few...
While the text bubble area is quite ridiculous, it is not significantly different from the original Xbox version. The steam version seems to have the best implementation. I can link some pictures if y'all need to see the Xbox version.
To be clear, that is a ridiculous notification. The Xbox version at least looks streamlined.
What is infinitely more important to be discussing is the multitude of other issues such as lots of missing audio, out of control save space consumption, inability to back out of a level up to name a few.
Not an issue directly but equip a vibroblade, stand still, and spam the Y button and enjoy. This isn't problem by itself but similar animation buffering or whatever this could be considered can be seen by moving your character and entering a menu and quickly exiting or going to the Switch's home screen and quickly returning to the game. Your character can warp all over the place.
Maybe its fun but its definitely not correct.
Trask's tutorials are mostly silent, probably intentionally due to different button mappings. As a non programmer/audio file editor I certainly do not know I bet it would be semi trivial to edit the original audio files to simply insert a combination of silence and the word button for the displayed button... while still retaining most of his dialogue similar to... I think the Mario 3d All stars version of Sunshine? I don't know I've heard and seen it done on some switch port somewhere.
Overall its a playable game but the further along I get the more I notice missing or messed up.
The no death audio, missing character switch audio, and failure/success audio with security and disarming is pretty darn ridiculous. At first I wondered if this was some kind of Nintendo directed change but I doubt it. Not with the like of the Outer Worlds and The Witcher and ... GTA...
The initial intro video is also gone. On the Xbox version there's a short clip of in game cut scenes that plays after the Darth Malak splash screen.
I don't see enough mentions of most of these problems. Either not many people are playing this version or many that are, haven't played the Xbox or Steam versions. I know nothing of the mobile versions.
head to https://support.aspyr.com/hc/en-us to submit bug reports. The port needs plenty of work. At least it was cheap.
Don't get me wrong, I still love KOTOR but I am not playing it on the Switch in this messy state and that really bothers me, since you know, I did buy it and all and almost no review I have seen makes any mention of the problems others are pointing out.
EDIT: oh yeah... I believe I haven't followed protocol. I have edited this comment a few times to clarify my scattered thoughts and correct spelling and grammar shtuff...
@Onion I understand it's something you would like to see addressed, but it's not an issue in the sense of a game breaking bug or a critical feature that is not working as intended. The large pop-up during combat is admittedly an odd design decision, but it absolutely does not affect gameplay at all. Not even a little.
For the record, I don't care if you buy the game or not. I just think it's odd to suggest one should avoid it because of such an inconsequential thing.
This is a very informative post, I had no idea about half the things listed here. You also don't have to state that your post was edited, that's just something I and a few others do. Far as I know there's no etiquette or anything involving that. Since it appears you're new, welcome to Nintendolife!
As the post above yours shows, there are definitely other things that are more deserving of a patch, this much I agree on. The text box issue is just a silly thing that people have picked up on because it's the most obvious oddity that pops up mere minutes into the game. It's ridiculous to have a giant text box notify you that you are indeed in combat, but it's not game breaking. This is why my original post on the issue was worded the way it was and why I clarified later on that it's not something that would deter me from this version of it forever. It's just a stupid thing that bothers some people and not others. But it's a stupid thing I'd like to wait and see fixed.
The thing is though, it doesn't affect the gameplay for YOU, but for other people, it's extremely off-putting and it would affect gameplay for those people. It's distracting and annoying to look at. I don't like it and think it's worth waiting to see if something is done about it.
I'm beginning to think you're either skimming posts or having a reading comprehension problem. At no point did I ever suggest anyone "should avoid it". I have no idea where you're even getting that from. I speak only for myself. This is the 2nd time now you've taken one of my posts and completely re-worded it to fit a completely different context. If i were going around actively telling people not to buy it, you'd be right, but I'm simply stating that I have no intention of buying this game until it's ironed out a little more. Should be relatively simple to understand, but here we are still going back and forth. The idea of someone waiting for a few patches should not be such an alien concept.
@VIIIAxel It’s a little hard to read (and I must stress “a little”) but that’s because of the opacity of the background behind the text, not the size of the box.
@Onion When I say that it doesn't affect gameplay, I simply mean that it doesn't obscure critical information (or any information at all for that matter) or otherwise hinder one's ability to play, which is objectively true. Whether or not one considers it too unsightly to simply ignore is another matter.
Given the nature of the game, this is true. That was never really disputed though. At least, not by me. I've already acknowledged numerous times it's not game breaking. Hence why I said that it wouldn't affect my decision to purchase it long term. Whether they address it or not, it'll give them more time to polish it further and make it even better.
@creativeusernamehere Fewer intro animations is a feature, not a bug.
But, yes, audio cues for some things would be nice, or at least a text message telling you that your character failed to pick a lock, for example.
But regardless, I'm having a lot of fun replaying it and finding it just as enjoyable as when I first played it 20 years ago.
@Mountain_Man skippable intro animations would be a feature. Omitting anything from the original versions outright is not a feature.
"Q: Does Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic for Nintendo Switch have any major changes?
A: This is a port of the original game. There will be some minor adjustments to accommodate the Nintendo Switch hardware but outside of that, this will be the original version of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic that fans know and love"
According to Aspyr, depending on interpretation, the issues I am pointing out are not intended. (not talking about the notification)
No doubt, this game is still KOTOR and KOTOR is still awesome
But if you can, fire up the og Xbox version. if you have the disc and an Xbox one or probably series x/s it will play just fine (even with some minor updates). If you don't immediately notice and feel some of the differences, well then hell, that is awesome. I am legit happy for you.
I couldn't wait to purchase this and I am still going to spring for the physical limited run release because I am an idiot, I guess. But I can't un-notice the quirks I've mentioned and the audio issues are really abrupt to me. it's probably some kind of a hyper sensitivity thing or something. After noticing the missing intro video, I raised an eyebrow. When Trask stopped talking for his tutorials I sat forward and focused. When the first in game cut scene of sith vs republic had no death audio I think I was triggered. And when I saw the combat notification I paused the game and grabbed my Xbox disc and popped that bad boy in my Xbone vcr and waited for updates... just so I could see if I was crazy.
Maybe I am splitting hairs, but I am definitely not crazy
KOTOR is still awesome. Enjoy the game however you choose to play.
@creativeusernamehere I still have an original PC version of the game along with the full color spiral bound manual, so I could easily install and play the original if I really wanted, but I'm not finding anything objectionable about the Switch release that compels me to do so..
The switch version looks better
Tap here to load 61 comments
Leave A Comment
Hold on there, you need to login to post a comment...