[games_access] Will of Steel

AudioGames.net richard at audiogames.net
Fri Feb 18 05:51:19 EST 2005

Hi Folks,

Just read this newsflash: 
http://www.beststuff.com/article.php3?story_id=7774 . The interesting part 
is of course the voice control ("It is also possible to play the game almost 
entirely by voice commands alone"). I doubt that the developers thought of 
accessibility when designing this game. Maybe we could send them an email 
and tell them about it, so maybe they can make the *whole* game accessible 
by voice commands. I think many people with motoric disabilities will be 
very happy.

Follow the link or read the pasted article at the bottom of this email).



ps: A few weeks ago I was filming some clips for an educational package on 
web accessibility. Here I also filmed two clips of a person with MSA-II 
(heavy motoric disability, the person does everything mostly with his head) 
playing Bookworm using two methods: a mouthstick (with which he was very 
quick to play the game) and voice commands using Dragon Natural Speak (which 
slowed the game down a lot compared to the mouthstick). We're going to put 
the (dutch-language) clips in the educational package in any case (the clips 
are meant to show how people with disabilities use the internet). Maybe it's 
an idea to get some footage of other people with disabilities playing games 
(or miserable failing to play games, which is also very informative). We 
could put them on the GA-SIG website perhaps? My experience is that there's 
still a big gap between game developers and people with disabilities (an 
almost similar gap as between flash designers and people with disabilities). 
But when you show them an example of Johhny X, 22 years old, trying to play 
Game Y, which he has trouble with because he's deaf, or has a muscle 
disorder, then perhaps you could raise awareness of this subject.
Over at the AudioGames.net website you can already view several clips of 
blind children playing computer games (Drive, The Curb Game (very short) and 

--- (here's the article)

      GMX Announces Will of Steel for PC

      February 2, 2005 - GMX Media today announced that they will be 
publishing the ground breaking military Real Time Strategy game Will of 
Steel for PC - CD ROM. The game is to be launched across the UK in the first 
quarter of 2005.

      "Will of Steel is set to be one of our strongest games to be launched 
2005." commented Commercial Director for GMX Media Mike Bright. "This game 
will astonish both dedicated and casual players of PC games with its ground 
breaking use of existing graphic technologies and its unique use of in-game 
voice control mechanisms."

      THE GAME:
      Will of Steel is a modern warfare tactical 3D Real Time Strategy game 
set in the early 1990s. As a young Marine officer, William Steel is the son 
of the highly decorated USMC General Thomas Steel. Players must assume 
command and responsibility of the battalion at his control and defeat your 
opposing in forces in hostile locations around the globe.

      At the players disposal will be infantry, battle tanks, armoured 
personnel carriers, recon units and many other types of military hardware. 
The player must make wise military choices and decide how to adjust his/her 
actions to counteract the strategy employed by the enemy forces in 
Afghanistan and Iraq. Missions take place in day or night with a number of 
climate conditions that may help or hinder your battle progress.

      Throughout the game, the player also strives to improve his/her 
career. By winning medals and being promoted, various special options are 
revealed that he/she can use in battle. Special options include:

      * Air transport
      * Artillery support
      * Air strike
      * Satellite reconnaissance
      * Long range missile attack
      * Reinforcement
      * Special operations team

      In Will of Steel, the player has full control of all assigned units, 
camera, and special options such as: Air Attack, Transport, Special Teams 
etc, through the use of vocal commands. The player can order unit movements, 
choose tactics, groups units, and can even choose the types of weapons and 
stances that the units take. These possibilities will allow the more skilled 
players to play the game and lead their troops exactly the way they desire 
while the less skilled players will also be able to manage units while using 
simpler commands and options.

      It is also possible to play the game almost entirely by voice commands 
alone. The mouse pad can be used to select units and groups of units, to 
point to the places where commands should be executed, and to select options 
from one of the menus. Keyboard allows for a quick and convenient way 
(shortcut) for various commands to be executed.

      Special focus is given to voice control because it has never been used 
in RTS games before. Voice control should help the player to control his/her 
units much more easily and effectively than by just using the keyboard and 
mouse pad. Besides that, voice control has the purpose of simulating natural 
verbal communication between officers and their units. This will add to the 
realism and will make the player feel as if he was a real-life military 

      SOURCE GMX Media

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