[games_access] Temporarily Disabled by Tech (was Prince of Persia)
D. Michelle Hinn
hinn at uiuc.edu
Tue Mar 16 18:17:03 EDT 2010
Indeed. There are times when universally accessible can become
"impossible" (understatement) but that doesn't mean that we should
throw in the towel. Perhaps some games will never be universally
accessible -- I can't think of what is actually universally
accessible to everyone in every case, games or not. But it's a
philosophy to keep in mind and to work toward even if in the end we
fall short due to budgets, solutions that work for one group but make
things worse for another, etc.
BTW, do I have stories to tell about motion sickness and the creation
of Halo! Wow. Things got messy in the usability labs. :( Quite a few
of us couldn't watch the observation screen because the characters
are moving at 40mph and you are not going anywhere. That's why so
many large scale VR apps (my background) in environments like the
CAVE and CUBE made people so ill. If you weren't the driver, you got
the "backseat of the car driving fast around a mountain" effect. So
what Disney Research and others learned was exactly how important
moving the ground platform was to go along with the visuals on
screen. Lessened the motion sickness if you moved people as if they
were REALLY in the environment versus just by sight.
There are lots of temporarily disabled by technology readings and
examples. I broke my ankle a few weeks before I was hospitalized for
something completely different. Guess who couldn't use the drum kit
in Rockband because my left foot is weaker than my right (the one I
broke)? Yes, solutions exist but I didn't have any at that point in
time and I knew that I'd be out of the cast soon enough so spending
the money on a solution wasn't practical.
I'm in PT right now for both my abdomen and my ankle. I asked them if
we could try to integrate wii fit into my program. They didn't have
prior experience with it but I could show them through it and we are
using it for certain things like balance and such. Sure, it's not
"stand alone" for me yet. My body is too beat up at the moment that
right now I need a partner for any exercise I do. I have a molded
walking cast but the main issue is the ten inch incision up my torso
that is partially open (on purpose). If I fell...that would be very
bad....as you probably can guess as a PT!
One thing that we haven't figured out yet that is very important to
my physical health is that I have also lost a horrific amount of
weight (current: 5'6 -- 97 pounds...) in the last month so making
sure I maintain and increase my weight is important plus I am
surgically menopausal so there are bone density concerns. I had
already lost weight with the ovarian cancer but when things moved to
the pancreas...eek. If you have any ideas that I could share with my
PT team, please email me off list! That would be very kind of you.
I'm not ready to go quite yet and I don't have easy access to PT
outside of where I am now until I am cleared for travel (three more
Thanks for bringing up this interesting conversation Sheri and
Sandra! I am going to work on finding some of my old VR articles
about temporary disabilities that could help you with a historical
background for any lit review or just personal/professional interest.
Wow...talking about the CAVE brings back memories! *
* For those not familiar with the CAVE/CUBE, the CAVE was a four
walled (floor, plus forward, right and left walls where you could
stand inside, say, DOOM (one of the first things to get ported
over...lol...scientific money at work!). The CUBE is a six walled
environment (all walls plus floor and ceiling. As with so many
simulations, this was used in entertainment (Disney for example) and
the military but also car and plane manufacturers. And there were
several studies done with disabled users. One very interesting side
example was an artist who had been in a horrible car accident and as
a result had traumatic brain injury. Along with programmers, she made
one of the most emotionally beautiful VR apps I have ever seen. It
chronicled what the brain injury had done and how she now saw the
world. Very, very emotional and one of the best (IMO) VR uses I have
ever seen because it gave others (including doctors) a "walkthrough"
of what it was like to have a disability of that nature.
On Mar 16, 2010, at 11:26 AM, sheryl Flynn wrote:
> This is precisely why "universal design" would be helpful in games.
> ~Sheryl Flynn PT, PhD
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> From: D. Michelle Hinn <hinn at uiuc.edu>
> To: IGDA Games Accessibility SIG Mailing List <games_access at igda.org>
> Sent: Mon, March 15, 2010 11:01:02 PM
> Subject: Re: [games_access] timing, sound information (prince of
> Hey Sandra!
> I agree -- game accessibility is not just for those with disabilities
> -- so many things help improve the gaming experience for all! Thanks
> for your thoughts on Prince of Persia!!
> On Mar 15, 2010, at 10:11 AM, Sandra Uhling wrote:
> > Hello,
> > in Prince of Persia sound is very important.
> > Besides a puzzle that was already mentioned,
> > there is sound information for a special jump.
> > There is a jump where you have to jump from one
> > Wall to another and back ....
> > This jump is very difficult. It helps to listen
> > to the sound. There is a "paff" sound when you have to push the key.
> > Without this sound I would not be able to play it.
> > Also it would be great to have sometimes "timing-information".
> > There are some games where it is important to push a key at
> > a certain moment. Unfortunately you have to be able to get the
> > timing right, otherwise you cannot win. It would be great to have
> > a symbol or something counting down 3 2 1 click.
> > Or to make it very very easy without timing.
> > While playing I noticed that I want to join the story.
> > I do not want to be able to make it in a hard difficulty.
> > I am glad when I can finish it. One Prince of Persia
> > I was able to finish only 2%.
> > I am not disabled, but I have lots of difficulties to play such
> > Game Accessibility is more than just thinking about disabled.
> > It is also for "busy gamer" and "beginner"...
> > Best regards,
> > Sandra
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