[games_access] RobertFlorio catching up. GDC scholars working ongame invitation

AudioGames.net richard at audiogames.net
Thu May 4 18:31:07 EDT 2006

Hi Robert,

You're welcome :)

You know, if you want to keep some sort of log of your project, maybe it would be nice to get a spot on www.game-accessibility.com ? Some sort Developers Log for others to read, explaining the difficulties and *especially* the choices you make as a developer. This is one thing I personally think is very important. We mentioned it a bit during our GDC presentation (lack of 'design decisions'-documentation). Our experience is that when you're designing an accessible game right from the start, you are likely to meet many choices which will influence your initial idea - and doing a lot of comprimising. If you're project has a name we can set it up in the Project Gallery (http://www.game-accessibility.com/index.php?pagefile=project_gallery)? The TerraSonica project (although an old student project) is an example of what interesting stuff you can encounter while making an accessible game (the current doc is an old one - will upload a new three-page doc next week). In my opinion, there's way too little documentation on *Game Accessibility Design Issues* (which I will be raving about for the next couple of months ;)

I have too little time to be a game builder team member but you're welcome to email me anytime with questions, advice or critique on audio game design. A couple of suggestions I'd like to give you from the start if you plan to make your universally accessible game FUN for people with a visual disability:

- browse www.audiogames.net : the articles and the games there will give you some insight in the field of games for the blind and audio games, its possibilities but also its limitations...
- get to know game audio: I can't press this issue enough! Sound's usually the side-kick of the project but if you want to make 'an accessible game for the blind', you have to deal with the fact that the game *has to be fun without visuals*. And the most likely medium for that is sound. For this, get to know what game audio is, what its purpose in games is, etc.
- whatever game you make, play it with your eyes closed and see if it is as much fun as with sight. And make sure you don't use BEEPS for everything (enemy aliens, radars, walls, etc) ... nobody wants to play a game that sounds like three alarm clocks going off at the same time ;)

What also might be interesting: this week I started some writing on Games for Gamers with Learning Disabilities. See: http://www.game-accessibility.com/index.php?pagefile=cognitive . It is not yet finished and I have to verfiy some of my data. But it delves a bit deeper into the scope of learning disabilities than the GA-SIG Whitepaper does. This is mainly because I once visited a session of someone named Paul Blenkhorn, who gave an impressive presentation on how 'learning disabilities' is usually the most negelected group in accessible design, and mostly because of the difficulties with defining the scope of this group. Just wanted to suggest you have a look at it - might give you some insight on this group :)

Good luck!



ps: I completely missed this wednesday's meeting... anything interesting?

  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Robert Florio 
  To: games_access at igda.org 
  Sent: Thursday, May 04, 2006 9:23 PM
  Subject: [games_access] RobertFlorio catching up. GDC scholars working ongame invitation

  Hello everyone I've been extremely busy with school, trying to start new therapy, and trying to get a video game started for completion for the next GDC 2007.  A few scholars from this year including myself are working on a game and we are going to try to make it universally accessible.  If anyone would like to contribute to it perhaps team up with myself to be a backup in consolidating information to get it accessible or maybe can help with programming I'm sure you are welcome to the team.  This is an invitation hopefully it works.  Anyway is I haven't caught out with a lot of you think I so much for your progress in game accessibility.


  I plan on working on research possibly and creating a top 10 list for gamers with physical disabilities at www.game-accessibility.com as moderator of the gamers with physical disabilities section.  Thank you Richard and Sanders for that opportunity setting me up with that.




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