Photosensitivity and NOVA 2023

Information about risks and safeguards for photosensitive people at NOVA.

Demoparties, by their nature, tend to be full of striking animated visuals. They're a lot of fun, but they can also be a concern for people with photosensitivity (e.g. PSE). While we can't make any 100% guarantees about the presence of flashing images at NOVA, we do want to keep you informed about the risks and let you know about some of the safeguards we have in place.

Demos submitted to compos may contain flashing images. When we're aware of a production containing a lot of flashing, we will try to include a warning beforehand, but unfortunately we don't have the time and resources to fully review every demo submitted during the party. As cliché as it sounds: viewer discretion is advised.

None of the lighting shows at NOVA this year will have flashing strobes. In addition, we'll be using a tool called PEAT to analyse the previs renders of lighting cues ahead of time. This tool follows the Harding Flash and Pattern Test standard developed by Cambridge Research Systems and Dr. Graham Harding. It's the same standard that the BBC and Netflix use for broadcast images, and it should hopefully reduce the risk to people with photosensitivity at NOVA.

If you're worried that this might hamper the visual impact of the lighting shows, don't forget that this is the demoscene! We're all about creating awesome visuals on platforms with restrictions.

If you have any specific queries, please get in touch!