[games_access] Who will attend GDC 2016?

Ian Hamilton i_h at hotmail.com
Tue Dec 15 07:19:10 EST 2015

It's just standard misconceptions/assumptions.
My favourite example of cost is a game called Super Space Snakes in Space. High contrast visuals. colour-blind friendliness through pattern use, simple one button controls, choice of any key or mouse button, sandbox practice mode. Far more considerations than most games have, and it was a game jam game, made in 36 hours. At the same time as being one of the most polished and enjoyable games in the jam.

The reason why they were able to do so much was simply because they thought about it all from the start - for example when they designed their snakes, they thought about how to design them in a colourblind friendly way, they didn't design them first and then go back and try to figure out how to unpick what they had done and spend time/money on trying to convert them to being colourblind friendly.
There are some things that invariably cost money, but a great deal that can be reduced to cheap/easy or even free, just a simple design decision, if addressed early enough. Another example being text size, deciding from the outset that you are never going to use below 28px text for your 1080p game costs you nothing, but doing as The Witcher 3 did and trying to change the text size after everything has already been designed is prohibitively difficult and expensive. Or in-game instructions on controls, setting it up as variables at the start so when you remap it updates them accordingly isn't free but it is very cheap, compared trying to go back and retrofit it later, which  is a bit of a nightmare.
It might be worth speaking to Thomas about it, he worked on a similar study. For yours, what could be really useful would be a comparison of cost: when figuring out the optimum place in the development process, and comparing cost to implement then against the point of development at which it would be the most difficult/expensive. A few of those comparisons crossposted as something like a gamasutra post as well as on the game-accessibility site would no doubt go down well.
Similar situation with finding people, may seem difficult if you haven't done it before, or have been burned by trying to contact national organisations, who are understandably protective of the people they represent. But it's easy enough, most people have groups near them who are often eager to help, or for those who have the money it's straightforward enough to get a market research company to source people for you. Or just recruit online, there are good communities, and a search for name of condition + gamer on twitter comes in pretty handy.
Misconceptions / mythbusting in general sounds like something that should be content on the GASIG site, so perhaps that's where GDC fits in, get something drafted for review at the round table.
Date: Tue, 15 Dec 2015 11:03:50 +0100
From: game at accessibility.nl
To: games_access at igda.org
Subject: Re: [games_access] Who will attend GDC 2016?

Hi all, won't be there, unfortunately a bit too far. However, recently we had the Control Conference back here in The Netherlands. Did some interviews there with a lot of (also indie) developers who were all saying the same thing: "It costs a lot of money to add accessible options to our games". And also "It's hard to validate the games with people with disabilities because we can't find them". Maybe it's something to take into consideration when attending GDC. 

Over here we're now trying to work out some options on how to make games accessible for the smallest amount of money and sorting out where to add this in the development process. So we can hand this over to developers and say, for this game it costs this much, you'll reach an audience that's bigger etc. 

Well just my 2 cents here but we're working on it ;)

Kind regards, Erik
2015-12-11 14:04 GMT+01:00 Andreas Lopez <andreas.lopez93 at gmail.com>:
I fear my wife, Yairelys and I won't attend this year because we have a trip to her family in cuba later next year and I only have one set of vacation. Hope to hear whatever happens Game Accessibility related here though!Sincerely,

Andreas Lopez
Game Designer & Game Accessibility Advocate
Co-Founder of Mythic Dragon Entertainmenthttp://mythic-dragon.com

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