Change Calendar Views

When I input things on the calendar it displays the events as solid colors. 
I’m used to Apple iCal, which a solid color means an all day event.
Is there a way to change each event to just colored words, like iCal, so I don’t have every event look like an all day event?

As far as I’m aware events in the calendar are only solid colours, but maybe this might be added in the future.

Can I change the colors, maybe lighten them?

Yes. Right-click on your calendar in the left pane, and choose Calendar Color.