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Author Topic: Game Accessibility Features  (Read 5064 times)

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Sandra

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Game Accessibility Features
« on: November 13, 2009, 08:41:27 PM »

Hello,

first thank you very much for the Accessibility Features that are already in the engine!
I think that is amazing!


Here are some more nice ideas:
I am no engine expert, so I post all I know.
I am not sure if they are good and useful for an engine.

Controller:
* Support of keyboard. (keyboard only, keyboard and mouse)
* Support of alternate controller (mouth, head, eye controller)
* The control should be configurable by the user

Output:
 Possibility to play with output just
* sound (playable by blind gamer)
* graphic (sometimes audio contains important information)

Graphic:
* Also playable without graphic (some blind gamer do not have good graphic cards)
* possibility to disable blinking stuff
* Option for simple, high contrast graphic,
* highlight of interactive elements (is already)

Menu
* AudioInterface (is already), would be great to select the dialect, I have english voice for german text
* Highlight of the focus (is already)
* one click start

Orientation:
* a map would be great
* Possibility to navigate with this map (like in book of unwritten tales)
* Gamestory: journaling ([CC] logfile?)

Help:
* small hints up to walkthrough, accessible in the game
* tutorial, ingame help

Sound alternative:
* Closed Captioning
www.accessibility.nl/games/index.php?pagefile=soundalternative

Text alternative:
* All text are written (is already)

Dialoge:
* break function, and possibility to read the text
* focused dialog is highlighted and read


Control for blind gamer:
* moving: with arrow keys or and mouse
* "Go to" can be tabbed through, the location is read aloud

Interactive Elements:
* can be tabbed through (is already)
* is read aloud (is already)


Inventory:
* can be tabbed through (is already)
* is read aloud (is already)
* action is selected with key

Dialogue:
* can be tabbed through
* is read aloud

Sound:
* 3D Audio
* AudioInterface


**********************+
I have only played "Die Kunst des Mordens - Geheimakte FBI"
The features are great. It would be fantastic when we could make them better.

The game is not yet playable only with keyboard.
+ It is possible to tab through all interactive elements
- but it is not possible to tab through the menu
- and through the inventory (?)
- e.g. PDA
It would be great, when it would be possible to change the speech (language and speaker)
+ break function is ok,
- it is not possible to read the subtitle

Some more key function would be great.
E.g. see SoundRTS a RTS game for blind gamer

**********************************
Some tips are for the people who finaly design the game.
And we should get some more feedback and wishes from blind gamer.


We can get more information here:
http://wiki.igda.org/Game_Accessibility_SIG
They have a very good Emailllist.

Best regards,
Sandra





« Last Edit: November 23, 2009, 03:50:40 PM by Sandra »
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metamorphium

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Re: Game Accessibility Features
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2009, 03:38:16 AM »

Hi Sandra,

most of the things you write here are easily doable in WME. The authors of the aforementioned game simply didn't choose these as their design decision.

I feel that you might want to address those issues to the team behind the game "Art of Murder" because they might listen to your points. If however you would like to know how to implement specific feature from your list, let us know. I don't see many potential problems with those features.


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Sandra

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Re: Game Accessibility Features
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2009, 11:06:36 AM »

Wow that sounds great. I did not know this.

Is it possible to get a little article about this?
What kind of Game Accessibility Features does the wintermute engine support ....

This would be a great article for www.ablegamers.com.
I recommend to ask them before you write the article.


Do you know a game that has some of these features?
I am looking for game examples.

Best regards,
Sandra
« Last Edit: November 14, 2009, 11:08:34 AM by Sandra »
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Mnemonic

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Re: Game Accessibility Features
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2009, 02:03:21 PM »

Thanks for the input, Sandra. Sadly, as metamorphium suggested, most of the things you mention cannot be easily solved on engine level, but they'd need to be taken into consideration by the game creators. I think your post can (and should) serve as guidelines for game designers concerned about game accessibility.
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metamorphium

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Re: Game Accessibility Features
« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2009, 02:58:25 PM »

As a sidenote, most of us - game developers - don't even consider the necessity to include accesibility features in such complex way. Interesting would have been to see if there is (and how big there is) a market for accessibility based games. I already had certain ideas about sound based games for blind people based on WME, but I was told that such idea is not commercially viable. It might be possible there's hidden market we don't see and I for one would be willing to explore it, if the interest from the customers would have been at least at the minimal necessary level. :)
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Re: Game Accessibility Features
« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2009, 03:19:40 PM »

As I see it, there are three distinct areas, related to accessibility.

1) Do not build unecessary barriers.

That's what ALL game designers should be aware of. Things like avoiding puzzles that rely on a single sense (sound-only based puzzles, puzzles based on color recognition, games with no subtitles, etc.). Alternative hints/ways should always be provided.

2) Providing alternate tools for making the games playable by people with disabilities.

That's basically what WME does. And that's where stuff like alternate input methods, scene annotations, maps, dialogue records etc. would fit.

3) Specialized games targeted to gamers with a specific disability

I agree with meta that it would be an interesting area to explore.
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Sandra

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Re: Game Accessibility Features
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2009, 10:45:50 AM »

Hi all,

At the IGDA GA-SIG we have all necessary information. I personally think it is time to provide this information for developers.
I will work on this in the next time. The information above is just a brainstorming.


AudioGames: There is a market but I do not know the size.
In Germany they are very frustrated, so they decided to build their own game. We just started the project.
You can find more information about audiogames at www.audiogames.net and maybe at www.ablegamers.com

But I do prefer that graphic and audiogames come together.

My personally opinion is this: for some people it is a Game Accessibility Feature, for all it is Usability.
I do not need them myself, but I sometimes wish for some GA Features.

Best regards,
Sandra



« Last Edit: November 16, 2009, 10:48:31 AM by Sandra »
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Sandra

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Re: Game Accessibility Features
« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2009, 10:54:17 PM »

Hi,

my friend is looking for a game to test the features from the engine.
Is there a game that use the game accessibility features very good.
Language should be German.

Then we could give better feedback.
Best regards,
Sandra
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