In video games, a predominantly black and white color palette is primarily a stylistic design choice in a medium that, for most of its history, has allowed for broader rangers of color.
It is sometimes used to evoke the feel of black and white cinema and graphic novels, or as a means to depict certain events - such as flashbacks, or during a fail state.
Games may also include optional color filters that turn the full color palette off, leaving the game in black and white; for example, L.A. Noire. Or, in the case of Betrayer, the game is set to black and white by default, but the player can opt to view the game in full color instead.
Note: this concept does not include games released for devices with monochromatic display screens.
The title MadWorld from Platinum Games features a stark, stylized art aesthetic that is predominantly depicted in black and white. Only certain elements of the game such as gameplay HUD graphics and comic book-style onomatopoeia are displayed in color.
In The Saboteur, developed by Pandemic Studios, the player explores an open world version of World War II era France that is depicted almost entirely in black and white, save for elements such as the red in Nazi flags and regalia. As the player completes missions and frees parts of the world, color is gradually restored.
Depicted entirely in black and white from start to finish, Playdead's Limbo keeps its protagonist and his adversaries in silhouette. The art style is meant to evoke a sense of fear and dread in the player while using means other than color to express the detail in its art.