Why we cannot use colored texts?

Why we cannot use colored texts inside Small/Big Message. Since its a feature from original text localization system inside overwatch.

Take an example for mercy ressurection text:
<fg%1$s>RESURRECTED</fg> BY <fg%1$s>%2$s</fg>


  • %1$s is a color in hex we wanna use in “RESSURECTED” and player name texts
  • %2$s text point to second argument passed to formatter, to place player name that revivied.

Its %1$s equivalent to String and Custom String values in workshop, except that we cannot format these values.

And formatter look for <fg00ff00>colored text</fg> and apply formatting.
It was used before for place icons inside custom room names, but was removed.

Both for REPL:

REPL in ow localization system is alternative formatting used specially for quantity numeration. For example:

count > 1 ? values : value

But THIS we have    If-Then-Else    value action now in workshop.


The reasons why excactly can vary, maybe a design choice, proper formatting functionalities should only be exposed with stylized HUD creation towards of longlivity, since mentioned Strings in Big Messages/Small Messages have a drastically short lifetime to exist and therefore in the Dev’s eyes the Messages should be just plain Hint tools occuring on certain events.


The reason has more to do with the value, which could be used to apply textures. Some textures could cause client crashes (which is absolutely forbidden) so they escaped the “<” character, and is just collateral damage.


Makes sense for that reason, reminds me of the recent LogJ issue.

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I don’t think it has something to do with that. But could be considered, also here the OP took a distinntion between Big/Small Messages and HUD Text( in mind i hope), any variant of these could take the same values mentioned, but only allowed it for HUDs, any reason or explanation why?


But they can use specific color parsing inside Strings, we know that <FG...FG> was used to textures, but was generally for internal overwatch localization system, but for workshop they can deploy an specific coloring in strings to do that.

Like: Custom String("{0} This is red", Color String(Color(255, 0, 0, 0)), Null, Null);

  • With alpha argument is ignored.

Or just instead of adding new value, just add color handling inside strings.
Like: Custom String("{0} This is red", Color(255, 0, 0, 0), Null, Null);

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Agreed it would come close to the HUD variants which have even color reevaluation as an option for Texts, so all in all the question will be unanswered, why wasn’t the same String formatting applied for Big/Small Messages by Blizzard, my bet as it remains is it was a simple design principle decision rather than technical restrictions.