[games_access] Important Question: What is our meta aim?

Eleanor eleanor at 7128.com
Sun Dec 21 11:52:13 EST 2014

Here are my thoughts on this important topic.

As developers ourselves with an interest in accessibility, it is our 
responsibility to educate other developers as to how to improve 
accessibility in their games and why that is important to them.

The HOW part we are doing on an ongoing basis with our guidelines and 
Includification and other informational papers and reports.  We need to 
continue to provide specific information to other developers in every 
venue we can as to how to build accessibility into our games.

The WHY part is where we need to improve our efforts.

1. We need to show that adding accessibility accommodations will improve 
game playability and thus improve sales.

2. We need to make developers and gamers understand that they too, at 
some time, will most likely need the accessibility accommodations - 
either on a temporary basis, or permanently as they age and can no 
longer play the games they love because they can't hear, see or move 
well enough to play them.

3. Hard-core gamers don't have to use the optional accommodations, but 
lots of other people can play the games ONLY because of these same 
accommodations such as the ability to slow things down, or have bigger 
type with improved contrast, or have more information given through 
sounds, or the ability to modify the controls to accommodate mobility 
problems.  The gamer culture needs to understand that it is OK to 
provide the means for people to play their games, even if it isn't at 
the "hardest" level.  Changing the gaming culture is a real challenge 
and it has to start with the game developers.  That is why, as game 
developers, we have to educate other developers in this area.

I believe that our main aim is to improve the playability of games for 
all people, not just the small sub-set of gamers who currently are the 
target market for most games that are being released. Built-in 
accessibility accommodations can help to do that.

Eleanor Robinson
7-128 Software

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