Ask LH: Will The PS4 Version Of Destiny Ruin My Eyesight?

Dear Lifehacker, I am primarily a PC gamer but recently the Destiny Beta came out and I spent a whole week playing my PlayStation 4 and barely touched my PC. During that week of playing the PS4 my eyes would strain and become really sore after long hours of gaming but I rarely got that over the years of PC gaming. The PS4 uses one of my PC monitors so it can't be the peripheral. Do you know what it could be? Thanks, Sore Eyes

Dear Sore Eyes,

We actually answered a very similar question earlier in the week. As we suggested then, it's usually a good idea to visit an optometrist if your eyes are giving you trouble; especially if there's a history of visual impairment in the family.

With that said, your case appears to be an isolated incident caused by the PlayStation 4. The reason you experienced additional eye-strain on the PS4 could be related to the lower field of view used in most console games. This is commonly referred to as the "binocular effect".

Y'see, PC games typically provide a wider first-person view (between 90 to 100 degrees) which makes it easier to take scope of your digital surroundings. By contrast, console games usually have a much narrower field of view, which forces the player to focus on their direct line of vision as if they were wearing binoculars.

In short, a low field of vision will tax your eyes more than a high field of vision. It can also cause mild disorientation or dizziness in people who aren't used to playing console games. This is precisely why so many PC video game ports have been tweaked with "Field of View" mods to improve the gaming experience.

Has anyone else experienced visual discomfort while playing Destiny? If anyone has an alternative theory, let Sore Eyes know in the comments section below.

Cheers Lifehacker

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Comments

    The real reason is the console versions run at 30fps

      This could be it, on a regular TV 30 frames is fine but on a monitor that is right in your face it's awful.

      I can't play console games on my projector for the same reason.

      Is this true? I felt the beta was quite smooth on PS4

      No, the framerate is irrelevant, the TV/Monitor whatever will still be running at 60Hz, so the eyestrain is the safe at 30fps or 60fps.

      Do you get eyestrain when watching a movie which runs at 24 fps

    I suffer at the evil hands of FOV on consoles. I get crippling motion sickness when playing on console, usually shooters.

    As much as I loved the Destiny Alpha and Beta, I had to take motion sickness medication just to play. Although motion sickness doesn't relate directly to your eye strain, it does highlight the need for adjustable FOV on console games.

    I can't play any modern FPS for more than 2 hours a session. I get motion sickness if I play, so after 2 hours i get nauseus enough that I need to stop. Changing monitors, refresh rate, games ... all doesnt seem to help. The only time I remember not having this problem was during counterstrike. Odd tho.

    Dear Sore Eyes,

    Do you regularly game on the PC for the same periods of time that you spent on Destiny, in your enthusiasm? A good way to test this is to install a 4X game like Civilization, Endless Space, XCOM, or Galactic Civilization.

    If you're playing those 'one more turn oh shit it's 8am what the hell' games and not experiencing the same issues, it could definitely be a Destiny/console-specific problem.

      World of Warcraft is also another good one, been there done that :P

    I thought these cases are normal.

    I faced similar case. But I don't get strain eye unless I wasn't sleep well or still wake up in late night.

    But in my case while playing destiny be5a, I get dizzy and sometimes I need some time looking to the screen to realize what is happening....

    I think because the new graphics and destiny has a rich full environment and alot of details, and our eyes can't accommodate these high quality details. First time I faced this case whuke playing the BF3 Beta.

    I actually had the same thing happen to me. My eyes got really aggravated, sore and red. Ive NEVER had that happen to me while playing PC games.

    No i played it and im fine. Sounds like your just a master pc race complainer.

    I also never had a problem on pc or xbox360, but on ps4 destiny my eyes got so red i had to use eye drops and my girlfriend wants me to seek medical attention.

    this shit is rediculously painful and itchy.

    Played GTA V, Far Cry 4, Dying Light for hours in a row on the PC, had no problem. Played Destiny on PS4 but using my PC monitor, eyes get sore after about 1-1.5 hours :( Really annoying... Brightness is fine though.

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