[games_access] Harmonix needs our help!

Reid Kimball reid at rbkdesign.com
Sun Dec 16 12:43:52 EST 2007


It's not clear to me how many USB slots are available for use after
everything is setup, but similar to Eleke's 5th person idea is that
the paraplegic gamer uses his drums as usual and then a 5th person
uses a normal console controller to activate the kick pedal with
whatever button they want.

Yes, as Michelle mentioned, if the player wants to play alone, then
the kick pedal will need to be used in some other way. Has anyone
mentioned using the cameras that the consoles use? It may be possible
for the camera to recognize head motions. Think of a "virtual" kick
pedal being to the right of a players head and anytime they want to
use it, they tilt their head right.

I personally don't worry about head thrashing, I think players have
the willpower to control that if they understand their head can help
them use the kick pedal. Depending on the position of the virtual kick
pedal (aka head bang pedal) they could still have a lot of free head
movement.

-Reid

On Dec 16, 2007 4:08 AM, AudioGames.net <richard at audiogames.net> wrote:

> Which, by the way, could be the start of RapBand*, consisting of one Human

> Beatbox-controller, a turntable-controller and 2 mics :)

>

>

> *Babes, Bling and Cars not included

>

>

> ----- Original Message -----

> From: "AudioGames.net" <richard at audiogames.net>

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

>

> Sent: Sunday, December 16, 2007 1:00 PM

> Subject: Re: [games_access] Harmonix needs our help!

>

>

> > Hi,

> >

> > You don't really need to "blow" into a mic to trigger it. Simple whisper

> > the right letter (anything with "P" will do - that's why plop-filters were

> > invented), maybe add a noise gate and it'll work as a trigger.

> >

> > Greets,

> >

> > Richard

> >

> >

> >

> > ----- Original Message -----

> > From: "Reid Kimball" <reid at rbkdesign.com>

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

> > Sent: Sunday, December 16, 2007 3:25 AM

> > Subject: Re: [games_access] Harmonix needs our help!

> >

> >

> >> This is a difficult problem to solve. I think in the future a sip/puff

> >> mechanism should be considered. Rock Band 2: On Tour or whatever it

> >> will be called could ship with headset microphones for everyone, or

> >> why couldn't players use their current gaming headsets? You wear it,

> >> assuming it's snug enough to stay on with the head thrashing and blow

> >> into it to use the kick pedal.

> >>

> >> Other than that, I say give the players what they want, if they are

> >> requesting that the kick stand action be automatic, best to do that in

> >> a future patch.

> >>

> >> I think people who are new to games and not technically disabled will

> >> benefit from game modes that automate difficult actions, such as EA's

> >> Family Play controls for their Wii sports games.

> >>

> >> -Reid

> >>

> >> On Dec 15, 2007 4:45 PM, AudioGames.net <richard at audiogames.net> wrote:

> >>>

> >>> Great question!

> >>>

> >>> First thing to jump to mind is to do something with the gamer's

> >>> mouth/vocal

> >>> options because it's free and available. Two ideas would then be either

> >>> some

> >>> very simple bite/sip/puff controller or a very simple head mic-setup (of

> >>> course you need to be careful in a room full of sound with placing

> >>> mics). A

> >>> sip/puff/bite controller has the issue of hygiene which can be a pretty

> >>> big

> >>> problem. If so, go for the mic (which is simple hardware as well). The

> >>> only

> >>> thing you need from either the mic or the sip/puff/bite controller is a

> >>> trigger of some sort. A player would then use his arms for the standard

> >>> hi-hat/snare/toms/riot/crashes/cowbell-stuff, and "sing" the kick:

> >>> "boom"+hihat > hihat > hihat+snare > "boomboom"+hihat > etc. A benefit

> >>> of

> >>> this solution is that I think it can actually add to the fun of the

> >>> game.

> >>> The drummers in the bands I used to play in were always the types of

> >>> guys

> >>> who would always mimic what they were playing with their voice:

> >>> "boom-tjak-ka-boomboom-tjakcrash"- that sort of thing (especially in the

> >>> bar

> >>> after practice ;). Also, when synced with samples of a kick-drum,

> >>> gamers

> >>> might be awed, thinking it is really cool to "boom" in a mic and hear a

> >>> kickdrum from the machine ;) It might even turned out to make the game a

> >>> bit

> >>> easier... ? Alex, is there is a lot of double kickdrum in there?

> >>>

> >>> Greets,

> >>>

> >>> Richard

> >>>

> >>>

> >>>

> >>> ----- Original Message -----

> >>> From: "d. michelle hinn" <hinn at uiuc.edu>

> >>> To: <games_access at igda.org>

> >>> Sent: Sunday, December 16, 2007 12:30 AM

> >>> Subject: [games_access] Harmonix needs our help!

> >>>

> >>>

> >>>

> >>> > Hey everyone,

> >>> >

> >>> > So I've been talking to the CEO of Harmonix about Accessibility and

> >>> > "Rock

> >>> > Band." If you haven't yet seen it (ie, you were definitely not at a

> >>> > booth

> >>> > right across from them at E for All!) -- Harmonix was also behind

> >>> > Guitar

> >>> > Hero 1, 2, and 80s but then they spun that off to focus on Rock Band

> >>> > (which works with up to two guitars, a drum kit, and a mic). Right now

> >>> > it's available (USB wired) for Xbox 360, (wireless --

> >>> > I think...) for PS3, and then (wired again) for PS2 (they have a USB

> >>> > hub

> >>> > that plugs into the USB slot to allow for 4 separate USB devices).

> >>> >

> >>> > Here's the situation from Alex:

> >>> >

> >>> > "One obvious thing that has already become apparent in the forums is

> >>> > that

> >>> > there's a demand among

> >>> > paraplegic gamers for a mode of the drumming game in Rock Band that

> >>> > doesn't require the kick pedal."

> >>> >

> >>> > I was thinking about hardware solutions that might work, that perhaps

> >>> > a

> >>> > set of drumsticks that has some kind of squeeze mechanism might work

> >>> > but

> >>> > that might be tough to pull off while you are drumming. Having the

> >>> > foot

> >>> > pedal in as a hat sensor would be difficult for those who want to

> >>> > "ROCK!"

> >>> > (hehe...head banging). The thing is that there are times when you have

> >>> > to

> >>> > hit the drum pads with both sticks and the foot pedal all at the same

> >>> > time...so simply not using the pedal is not an option if you want to

> >>> > progress through the game.

> >>> >

> >>> > One thing for sure is the drums? It's the toughest thing on Rock

> >>> > Band -- I

> >>> > brought it to a party last night and we had three people playing as

> >>> > "the

> >>> > drummer" at the same time in order to avoid our "band" from getting

> >>> > kicked

> >>> > off stage again and again -- even then the point difference between

> >>> > the

> >>> > guitar and vocal versus the drums...guitar and vocal were in the 80s

> >>> > and

> >>> > 90s/100 on "easy" and drums got to about as high as 60/100 also on

> >>> > "easy."

> >>> > And this was from people who had never played Sing Star or Guitar Hero

> >>> > on

> >>> > the other instruments. So there's some balance issues that are coupled

> >>> > along with it.

> >>> >

> >>> > So I'm thinking that a mode that didn't involve the kick pedal might

> >>> > be

> >>> > more attractive in general...perhaps as some sort of patch (harder

> >>> > with

> >>> > consoles if you don't have it hooked up to the net but they might be

> >>> > willing to send out a patch on a game disk for free or the cost of

> >>> > shipping and handling). Or it might just be a "for the next version"

> >>> > kind

> >>> > of thing.

> >>> >

> >>> > But can anything be done NOW with regard to a hardware alternative for

> >>> > this version of Rock Band that has just come out? If there is a

> >>> > software

> >>> > solution, what would we need access to in order to implement

> >>> > something?

> >>> >

> >>> > Thoughts? We have their attention! We might be able to really

> >>> > influence

> >>> > this game. Certainly I'll make Alex aware of Eelke's design solution

> >>> > for

> >>> > Guitar Hero for the visually impaired. But this is a rare direct

> >>> > opportunity for us to work with a major game company on current and

> >>> > future

> >>> > versions of this so we can get an inside look at what it takes to

> >>> > implement any one solution in a company. If it works out, this gives

> >>> > us

> >>> > some "street cred" as a group and be able to talk about the process

> >>> > at,

> >>> > say, next year's GDC with them.

> >>> >

> >>> > Hey, it could happen -- this is the CEO we're talking to!

> >>> >

> >>> > Michelle

> >>> > _______________________________________________

> >>> > games_access mailing list

> >>> > games_access at igda.org

> >>> > http://seven.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/games_access

> >>>

> >>> _______________________________________________

> >>> games_access mailing list

> >>> games_access at igda.org

> >>> http://seven.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/games_access

> >>>

> >> _______________________________________________

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