Balan Wonderworld is available now, but there is an issue involving experience photosensitive epilepsy or similar seizure disorders’ triggers. Videos of gameplay from the retail version revealed that the final boss fight deploys visual effects consisting of screen-filling, rapid-fire bright flashes. Those flashes and other “neurological triggers” employed in the scene may be enough to set off a seizure episode in some players with photosensitive epilepsy and potentially cause eye strain for non-epileptic players. Square Enix shared a tweet that noted the day one patch can help remedy the situation. [Thanks, Game Informer!].
Game Informer Editor Liana Ruppert, who has epilepsy, reported on the situation and previously raised concerns about a similar sequence present in Cyberpunk 2077, where the released version of the game included a “braindance” sequence that included flashing lights similar to those used by neurologists to trigger seizures in epileptic patients for diagnostic purposes.
Editor’s Note: Here is the link to the Balan Wonderworld video showing the scene in-question at the 12:40 mark. It spoils the final boss and contains triggers that could trigger a seizure or make people without epilepsy or seizure disorders feel ill or uncomfortable.
At this time it’s unclear if the effect is functioning as intended or if it is a bug of some sort. Balan Wonderworld has a “day one” patch to address concerns raised during the demo period, though descriptions of the patch’s scope did not mention visual issues or glitches. In a statement to IGN, Square Enix confirmed the possible triggering visual effects were an unpatched occurrence and are removed with the day one patch.
Balan Wonderworld is available on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and PC.