[games_access] FORUM (was Re: GDC 2008: VERY Bad News)

AudioGames.net richard at audiogames.net
Sat Dec 1 14:32:01 EST 2007

I was not ciriticizing you so don't you don't feel criticized by me ;) I
don't even know if everyone agrees to that plan anyway...? Do you? It's is
just ONE option...

Yes, I can help you.

----- Original Message -----
From: "d. michelle hinn" <hinn at uiuc.edu>
To: "IGDA Games Accessibility SIG Mailing List" <games_access at igda.org>
Sent: Saturday, December 01, 2007 8:16 PM
Subject: Re: [games_access] FORUM (was Re: GDC 2008: VERY Bad News)

> Well, it seems that the IGDA web initiative is pretty dead at the moment

> so there's no reason why we can't adopt the site. Can you help us/me get

> in touch with the foundation again so that we can work this out and get

> our web presence seriously back on track?


> Remember -- you've also had to take some time off from working with the

> SIG (I know...I have a PhD to finish too but I'm not in as nice a

> situation) so please remember that when you criticize about action not

> being taken on this and that. Cool?


> Michelle




>>Just so you know: the GA forum was left unattended for some time but the

>>spam was removed as far as I could see. The forum is still pretty popular,

>>it's just that not that many SIG people attend it (because it is not an

>>"offical SIG" forum?).


>>As I also said in the past: the Accessibility foundation is still awaiting

>>to be approached by the GA-SIG for collaborating on GA.com. I already

>>explained to a couple of you that with me and Sander having left the

>>foundation, most expertise left too. The foundation is currently focusing

>>on other projects and does not have the resources to maintain this website

>>at the moment. I already discussed a possible collaboration with GA-SIG

>>with my boss - EVEN to the extend of GA-SIG ADOPTING GA.com and chaing it

>>to a GA-SIG format - as if it was its own - with Accessibility only

>>sponsoring the website in the form of hosting it. As far as I know, the

>>foundation is still up for that. However, IGDA politics intervened which

>>resulted in that IGDA GA-SIG still does not have a website to call their

>>own. If GA-SIG does not want to collaborate with GA.com then I would still

>>suggest to buy www.gasig.org and simply make a website under that for as

>>long as IGDA politics keep intervening.









>>----- Original Message ----- From: "John Bannick" <jbannick at 7128.com>

>>To: "IGDA Games Accessibility SIG Mailing List" <games_access at igda.org>

>>Sent: Saturday, December 01, 2007 7:20 PM

>>Subject: Re: [games_access] GDC 2008: VERY Bad News




>>>No. Not harsh. Just on point. (Programmers are not hired for their social



>>>1. Yes.


>>>But this SIG is unique in that it is the one active place that covers

>>>multiple challenges, has an international audience, and clearly has the

>>>ears of some key industry players. If this SIG has its own concise,

>>>specific, answer to "what do you want us developers to do?" please point

>>>me to it.


>>>2. Again, this SIG has a unique position in that it can credibly publish

>>>such a list, that address multiple challenges, internationally, and has

>>>the ear of the major developers. Is there any such recognized list of

>>>companies and games? Why not from this SIG?


>>>3. Please.


>>>I'm on the Game Accessibility Project forum every day. It's getting

>>>spammed without intervention. It's much lower volume than such a fine

>>>effort warrants. Richard says he's out of there. It's adrift.


>>>And Mark's forum is outstanding, but does not right now have the

>>>attention of the industry leaders, or actual developers, that this SIG

>>>does. (No criticism, he's doing a wonderful job.) I'm on Audyssey every

>>>day and it has a very active set of game developers that help each other

>>>all the time. But it's limited to the blind and VI folks.


>>>I'd not heard of the RetroRemakes forum (thanks for the tip) but

>>>according to its main page, it's most recent post was in August.


>>>Show me a forum where mainstream game developers meet to help each other

>>>make accessibility happen.


>>>The three proposals stand.




>>>At 11:47 AM 12/1/2007, you wrote:

>>>>A little harsh, John perhaps?


>>>>1. Has been covered to various degrees here:






>>>>(and other places too).


>>>>2. Is is a good point. But there's so few mainstream developers making

>>>>deliberate accessibity efforts that take into account specific

>>>>disabilities. Here's a list of some:





>>>>3. Forums here:






>>>>We need the support of more people though!






>>>>----- Original Message ----- From: "John Bannick" <jbannick at 7128.com>

>>>>To: "IGDA Games Accessibility SIG Mailing List" <games_access at igda.org>

>>>>Sent: Saturday, December 01, 2007 4:05 PM

>>>>Subject: Re: [games_access] GDC 2008: VERY Bad News


>>>>>Reid is right.


>>>>>There are developers right now who want their work to be accessible.


>>>>>This SIG could right now facilitate that by:


>>>>>1. Providing, distributing, and publicizing a concise, specific set of

>>>>>functional criteria that define what means accessible.

>>>>>2. Compiling, publishing, and publicizing an annual list of which

>>>>>companies and games meet those criteria.

>>>>>3. Maintaining a forum (The currently rather drifting Game

>>>>>Accessibility Project comes to mind) where developers can go for

>>>>>immediate help.


>>>>>I'm a developer of games that are accessible.

>>>>>Have shipped 22 different revenue-generating products in a wide variety

>>>>>of vertical markets in the last 30 years.

>>>>>Am neither stupid nor lazy.

>>>>>And don't see any of the 3 above items.


>>>>>None of the 3 items should take long to build as a first cut.


>>>>>And if not from this SIG, then from where?


>>>>>John Bannick


>>>>>7-128 Software



>>>>>At 02:26 AM 12/1/2007, you wrote:

>>>>>>Please, can we stop with the negative talk about GDC and the game

>>>>>>industry? I work in the game industry for LucasArts. Just last week I

>>>>>>talked to a highly respected programmer and he's 100% behind us and

>>>>>>wants to talk about what we can do to improve accessibility in our

>>>>>>games after our current milestone is finished. There are dozens of

>>>>>>people at LucasArts that support game accessibility. Nintendo totally

>>>>>>gets it, EA Games totally gets it with their Family Play modes in

>>>>>>their sports games. Peter Molyneux gets it, Will Wright... the list

>>>>>>goes on and on.


>>>>>>It's offensive to me when people of this SIG accuse developers of not

>>>>>>caring because WE DO CARE. The last thing you want to do is insult the

>>>>>>people you have to work with. It's the quickest way to turn them away

>>>>>>from our cause.


>>>>>>So, instead of complaining, lets do something about it! First,

>>>>>>everyone here needs to understand what it's like for developers and

>>>>>>why it's so hard for them to adopt accessibility features.


>>>>>>1. Limited financial resources - Games are very expensive to make and

>>>>>>any new features adds to the cost. Before you can add accessibility

>>>>>>features you must have a game and that's where most of the money is

>>>>>>spent first.


>>>>>>2. Limited time - Game development is incredibly complex and hard to

>>>>>>tame. No matter how much extra time gets budgeted into the production

>>>>>>schedule, it always runs out well before all tasks are complete. When

>>>>>>this happens, features get cut in order to save the core of the game

>>>>>>and again, without a game, there can't be any accessibility features.

>>>>>>Because this usually happens so late, there isn't enough time to work

>>>>>>on accessibility features before the game has to ship.


>>>>>>3. Limited information - Even if a developer was pro-active and

>>>>>>scheduled the development of accessibility features into the games'

>>>>>>development schedule, there's still a major lack of knowledge and

>>>>>>tools that enable them to do their job. The SIG has been thinking

>>>>>>about accessibility features for years and we have all the solutions,

>>>>>>but developers don't yet. We need to make ourselves known and readily

>>>>>>available to help them.


>>>>>>What can we do to solve these issues? We need to develop our

>>>>>>relationships with developers and offer our assistance. Our attempts

>>>>>>to work with GarageGames is a good start. When a new game is announced

>>>>>>we should contact them and offer our expertise.


>>>>>>We have GOT to get a website up so that we can communicate our

>>>>>>abilities and expertise to our target audiences (game developers).


>>>>>>But there are technical issues and many of us are volunteers and so

>>>>>>things move very slowly.


>>>>>>Several of us are writing guidelines for implementing certain features

>>>>>>but again, this is a slow process. Others are doing research. Going to

>>>>>>conferences is awesome. Writing articles to Gamasutra is great as



>>>>>>Eitan is right, we have to "sell" our expertise. It's not that

>>>>>>developers don't care, they don't know that they SHOULD care.




>>>>>>games_access mailing list

>>>>>>games_access at igda.org





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