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AbleGamers Reviews Games From a Disability Standpoint 125

Posted by Soulskill
from the gaming-for-all dept.
eldavojohn writes "Early last month a visually impaired gamer sued Sony under the Americans with Disabilities Act (and if you think that people with disabilities don't play games, think again). The AbleGamers Foundation has decided to step forward and provide a rating system for games that blends together a number of factors to determine a score with regard to accessibility. Visual, hearing, motion, closed captioning, speed settings, difficulty settings and even colorblindness options are all taken into account when compiling these scores and reviewing these games."
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AbleGamers Reviews Games From a Disability Standpoint

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    The rating should also take into account how many of the NPCs are black Jewish vegetarian lesbian quadriplegic single mothers.
  • Good news (Score:4, Funny)

    by azior (1302509) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @05:10AM (#30295028)

    I know a game for people with a handicap: golfing

    On a serious note: this is good news, gaming/entertainment could get really mature

    • I know a game for people with a handicap: golfing

      Need to mind the hazards though: sand-traps and cocktail waitresses with voicemail...

      King Arthur--www.gamecasa.net

  • The equivalent... (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    ...of forcing Hollywood to make all movies accessible to the blind.

    I feel sorry for those with disabilities, but be realistic. Game producers don't need the extra delays and budgetary nonsense programming in these concessions to the disabled would bring.

    • by ynohoo (234463) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @06:26AM (#30295380) Homepage Journal
      Sometimes it as as simple as subtle changes during the planning phase. As someone whose hands shake too much for FPS and RTS, I was happy enough with TBS and Adventure games. So I was happily playing Myst 4, only to discover the designers had decided that a couple of puzzles weren't hard enough (vibrating crystal puzzle & monkey puzzle), so they had stuck timers on them! Could you disable or adjust the timer? No, sorry shaky hand player, game over.
      • by dintlu (1171159) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @10:42AM (#30297068)

        I think a part of the reason developers ignore the challenges disabled gamers face is because there are so many different types of disability, each of which raises very specific challenges that a non-disabled developer might not have the time or inclination to understand and work around.

        When you add that to the normal considerations - storyline objectives, gameplay objectives, internal politics, budgetary concerns, etc., it's not surprising that the disabled are completely marginalized and occasionally screwed by silly decisions like the one you've described.

        I think if the disabled want games to have a "mode" of gameplay specifically for them, they need to demonstrate that they are a viable market whose demands are easily met. The gaming review site is excellent - it raises awareness, but disabled gamers might be better off soliciting the ADA or some other organization to set up a system for determining a game's viability for different types of disabled gamers, ultimately placing a label on the packaging with this information.

        • Gameplay is something we haven't figured out for non-handicapped players. My gf was complaining about a game, all movement is controlled by using the mouse. Move it forward to walk, move sideways to turn, restore to where it was to stop turning.

          If you're disabled and would rather use keyboards, it's not an option in this game. If you're not disabled, it's still not an option.

          Ensuring all controls are programmable would go a long way to helping everyone, not just the disabled (or just my gf, which would i

          • by grumbel (592662)

            Ensuring all controls are programmable would go a long way to helping everyone, not just the disabled (or just my gf, which would improve my standard of living).

            The issue with that is that programmable game controls are a really hard problem to solve in a generic way, as you always end up with edge cases that just don't work properly with a different control device and often you need to change game logic to fix the issues, which is why games like Dragon Age have to pretty much completly rewrite their user interface for use with a gamepad instead of a mouse.

            That said, having software like joy2key or xpadder can get you quite far and make some games playable with dev

    • by poetmatt (793785)

      uh, no. Left4dead2 has a caption option even.

      • by Hasney (980180)

        uh, no. Left4dead2 has a caption option even.

        And that doesn't need it more than "Noise of zombies being gunned down"

        • by pwfffff (1517213)

          Actually, enabling it's practically cheating. When you're huddled in a corner with three shotguns and a chainsaw going off it's much easier to see *Tank roar* than it is to hear him growling in the distance.

          • Cheating?

            Not when you have it on cause your sound is off and you are trying to click softely because you don't want to wake your newborn ;)

  • Sueing? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tsa (15680) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @05:22AM (#30295078) Homepage

    Isn't sueing Sony because you can't play a game because you're visually impaired the same as, say, sueing Warner Brothers because you can't watch the Harry Potter movies? You can't expect people, and especially corporations, to cater to every type of handicap in a single product.

    • Offtopic. Your issue is relevant for that other topic about the sight-disabled suing Sony (which we already had a lengthy discussion about, and linked in the topic itself), but this is about giving ratings to games based on specific disabilities, which is a much better alternative.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      You can make movies accessible to the blind actually. It's called descriptive audio.

      • by Kjella (173770)

        You can make movies accessible to the blind actually. It's called descriptive audio.

        Sounds to me about as fulfilling one of the South Park episodes where there's this like über-epic battle going on, except they don't actually show the battle, only the kids watching it and saying stuff "this is the best battle ever", "bigger than LotR" and "man, I wish I had a camera". Don't remember which episode that was, but "movies for the blind" can't be much better. Then I'd rather go with audio books, at least they're written with that in mind that people can't actually see the characters and ha

        • That's because you're used to seeing - besides, considering movie theory is obsessed about music and ambiant sound and what not about which I don't really care (deafness), there's likely something more to a movie than to a book reading, no matter how well done.

        • by asdf7890 (1518587)

          Sounds to me about as fulfilling one of the South Park episodes where there's this like über-epic battle going on, except they don't actually show the battle, only the kids watching it and saying stuff "this is the best battle ever", "bigger than LotR" and "man, I wish I had a camera". Don't remember which episode that was, but "movies for the blind" can't be much better. Then I'd rather go with audio books, at least they're written with that in mind that people can't actually see the characters and have to imagine it.

          I think that would be the fight between Timmy and Jimmy in http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cripple_Fight [wikipedia.org] though my memory is hazy.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by TheRaven64 (641858)
          It's been around a lot longer than Southpark. I remember back in the early '90s the BBC ran a small-scale trial where they encoded a descriptive audio track in the flyback period (replacing teletext, I think, but possibly in some of the unused parts) so that blind people could 'watch' TV shows. As I recall, they also suggested that it would be useful for people hiding behind the sofa while watching Doctor Who (which should give you some idea of how long ago it was).
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Your.Master (1088569)

          Let me tell you, until you've watched the Imagination-land part 1 episode in descriptive video, you have NEVER truly seen South Park.

          Sadly, parts 2 and 3 were done with a different voice actor who seems to be a moron whose writer wasn't paying attention. But the first one is fan-bloody-tastic.

    • Re:Sueing? (Score:4, Informative)

      by dingen (958134) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @06:25AM (#30295370)

      That's why DVD's come with an extra audio track which contains "audio description". It's basically a voice telling you what is happening on the screen, making the movie accessible to both the blind and people who can't watch the screen for some other reason (walk to the kitchen, driving in a car, etc).

      In the UK, it's very common to have this audio description track available on TV as well. The law mandates that at least 10% of all prime time television has audio description included, but in practice a lot more than 10% of the shows include this.

      Some cinema's also offer audio description through an ear piece, which blind people can pick up at the ticket booth. That way the blind and non-blind can enjoy a movie together in the same theater.

      • by tsa (15680)

        Really? Cool, we don't have all that stuff here in NL.

        • But you do have subtitles.

          • by tsa (15680)

            Yes, thank God and Allah for those. I love them because you can hear the actual voices of the actors instead of some voiceover who doesn't sync with the mouth movements.

            • Or when it's an interview (or a commentary in a documentary) and they leave the original voice in but speak the translation over it so you can't hear either properly. French language channels seem particularly prone to that.

              • by CastrTroy (595695)
                Better than the American channels who seem to put subtitles for people speaking English with an accent. People with accents aren't that hard to understand.
                • by tlhIngan (30335)

                  Better than the American channels who seem to put subtitles for people speaking English with an accent. People with accents aren't that hard to understand.

                  Depends. I'm neither visually nor hearing impaired, yet I have closed-captioning on all the time, and turn on subtitles on movies (and games). What I've found is sometimes the audio mixing can be so bad the voice gets drowned out by some noise or music. Or sometimes the accent is heavy enough that it's an English-like language, but hard to actually hear.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by dingen (958134)

          Yes, really. In the Netherlands this is not a widely known technique, but it has been used on some films. DVD's which are available with audio description (as far as I know of) include Blind, Zwartboek, De Storm, Oorlogswinter and Bride Flight.

          A few cinema's, including CineMec in Ede and City in Utrecht have shown these films with audio description available through an ear piece.

    • I would have thought that blind folk would have the common sense to save money on special effects-laden Hollywood crap (which the Daily Star reading knuckle-draggers see as "high entertainment") and buy a decent audio book.

      Still, with so little common sense in the general population anyway, I suppose you can't help some of it purveying minorities. They are human too, after all.
    • and there were there are millions and millions to be made, common sense does not apply. Only convoluted readings of the law which end the desired result of the plaintiff.

      In other words, games became an issue after all those stories in the news about how much money they made in X days of release. The ADA was practically crafted as a gift to lawyers, the handicap might have actually ranked second, no probably third after special interest groups (defined as people who take offense for others provided their

    • What do you mean these bicycles aren't wheelchair accessible?!
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by deep2k (640705)
      I'm colourblind (deuteranope) and I can't play Gears of War because I can't see the ammo on the ground. An in-game option would have ensured my purchase...
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by yuna49 (905461)

        I have a mild red/green color blindness and find some games with color codings difficult to navigate. I had an especially hard time distinguishing the green and yellow elements in Chrono Cross where color is a primary component of the game play.

    • Isn't sueing Sony because you can't play a game

      Why are you dragging Sue's name through the mud?

  • by Gadget_Guy (627405) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @05:24AM (#30295082)

    I have just started to look at their site and the first thing that I notice as the page was loading was that the pictures that you click on near the top to go to choose the platform all have the same alt text of "xbox reviews". That will be confusing for someone using a screen reader.

    I thought the whole layout seemed a bit complicated and confusing, with javascript menus and a very busy interface. Gray text on a gray background seems an odd choice for the color blind people out there.

    Still, at least they are raising public awareness. Even if you don't think that game makers should HAVE to provide support for all disabilities, this kind of site fills in the role that most game reviewers would not consider.

    • by tsa (15680)

      You're right. They aren't called 'AbleGamers' for nothing, I guess.

    • by Eraesr (1629799)

      And the XBox image link ends up on a 404 page, which doesn't actually tell you that a 404 HTTP error has occurred, except for the "404" title of the page.
      It's a very unfriendly site for people with disabilities, which strikes me as odd, given the intention of the site.

    • by jbezorg (1263978)

      I just ran a quick section 508 compliance test on the AbleGamers Foundation site. Most of the links on the home page fall below minimal contrast level, CSS uses fixed font sizes ( px, em, pt, etc. ) rather than a relative percentage to allow visually impaired to change font size, etc.. If you're curious about web accessibility, the following resources are a good place to start.

      jimthatcher.com [jimthatcher.com]
      firefox.cita.uiuc.edu [uiuc.edu]

      • We do have a screen reader version of the main site, it is not perfect but is a good try given the tools we are using. http://ablegamers.com/?template=beez [ablegamers.com] . Also, 508 has lots of parts, but for the web the main disability is the blind and deaf (for multimedia content). We have looked at our demographic and shockingly (no not really) the totally blind are not big consumers of Left 4 Dead 2. That said the other 90+ % of the disabled community are. That is why we do not even rate a game based on it's playabi
        • by jbezorg (1263978)

          We have looked at our demographic and shockingly (no not really) the totally blind are not big consumers of Left 4 Dead 2.

          Section 508 isn't just about blind people reading web pages. It's also about the visually impaired where color contrast, per my original post, and color blindness plays a major role.

          A good portion of the links on your site fall below the minimum contrast ratio of 3:1. A prime example alert box with the mustard yellow text and faint yellow background. Honestly, do you really think that alert box is readable by someone with marginal vision?

          and we are doing out best with the tools we have made available.

          Well. I just gave you two more. Shockingly, I won't be suggesting any

    • Grey text on a grey background is fine for the color blind. It is terrible for the elderly and other people who contrast or cataract issues.

  • Website (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Idiomatick (976696) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @05:29AM (#30295118)
    They don't seem to have a very accessible website. Quick glance of their code didn't show any css for the blind. And the big sliding image thing in the middle doesn't look very accessible either.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by dingen (958134)
      Blind people don't need special CSS. As long as a website's markup is proper, semantic, standard-compliant (X)HTML, the screen reader won't have any problems parsing it.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Ablegamers (1535325)
      For the record, the site has a screenreader side. You can see the code for the screen read users at the top at the start of the body. http://ablegamers.com/?template=beez [ablegamers.com] it is not perfect but it is far better than the main site and we have loads of blind readers that say it is okay. We also have all the content converted into audio format for consumption on a iPod or other device. http://ablegamers.com/audio-ablegamers/AbleGamers-in-Your-Ear.html [ablegamers.com] We also understand that our target demographic is not th
      • Good to hear! I mostly checked because I don't think I've seen any site use CSS in the way it was intended for blind people with a seperate css for the blind (Not that I really look).

        "We also understand that our target demographic is not the totally blind gamer..."
        You should think about it, I doubt it'd be too difficult and I'm sure they'd appreciate the effort. Totally blind gamers are hardcore. I've tried some games for blind people and they are harsh!
  • Reminds me of this idea for an FPS I had whereby you're a soldier that get blinded in battle and gets given new eyes but instead of standard vision it's distance-vision.

  • Instead of suing and getting angry at the world, this guy should just have the serenity to accept the things that he can't change and move on with his life. This is the way the world works, and we can't do anything about it...
    • by westlake (615356) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @07:27AM (#30295660)

      Instead of suing and getting angry at the world, this guy should just have the serenity to accept the things that he can't change and move on with his life.

      But there can be change - and the law and the lawsuit often makes it happen.

      Closed captioning and subtitles have become so much a part of home video that their absence - in a Netflix stream, for example - comes as a surprise.

    • So you don't use glasses, computers or agriculture, right?

    • You can't do anything about it because you're a sheep, and you're willing to accept whatever the world hands you as the way it is because you don't have the gumption to try and make things better. This guy does.

      A reasonable person adapts themselves to the world; an unreasonable person adapts the world to themselves; all progress is made by unreasonable people.

      • You can lie to yourself that you can adapt and have the "gumption to try and make things better", and attempt to make yourself feel superior by calling realistic people as sheep. Sometimes we just have to realize that physical limitations are real; don't force yourself into something that you're not. There are always alternative activities aside from computer games.

        Good luck climbing Mt. Everest on a wheelchair!
        • It's very sad that you're essentially handicapping yourself by being so meek and accepting.

          And a one-legged man has in fact, climbed Mount Everest.

          http://www.distant.ca/UselessFacts/fact.asp?ID=129 [distant.ca]

          Here's a double-amputee who did it:

          http://www.brighthub.com/education/special/reviews/38900.aspx [brighthub.com]

          Even when we try and fail, we at least tried. You don't even care to do that. I feel nothing but pity for you.

          • It is very sad that you're essentially handicapping yourself by having the need to prove something. You feel offended by people that believe that it's more worthwhile and satisfying to accept yourself as you are, instead of pretending that your limitations would magically disappear by performing seemingly impossible feats. To be at peace with one's self is a far more effective way of coping for one's disabilities instead of overcompensating.

            Sure, go ahead and climb Mt. Everest on a wheelchair! The fact
            • You're quite honestly an idiot - being at peace with oneself also allows to have projects.

              • You're quite honestly compensating for your insecurities by calling people idiot instead of debating the relevant issue. Being at peace with oneself allows one to have projects that are within your capabilities.

                If life gives you lemons, don't try to overcompensate by making orange juice. The best thing to do is to make lemonade.

                Then again, you can always squeeze them in someone's eyes...
                • As I said above, what are your kind doing on a computer, shouldn't you be busy cutting down your communications to a more geographically convenient area so as to not go against nature or something? Overcompensating? Is that how you reply to anyone "oh you're overcompensating because I make things unaccessible for you" - most accessibility features are just part of doing things the right way, having subtitles, proper formatting of documents, audio that gives enough info, etc. And for what is exceptional, so

  • me play modern marfare 2 not so good because me have thinky trouble. me lawyer friend make activision give me special button i press make me win easy. now me win every time make me happy. everyone should have lawyer friend make everyone give you what you want then everyone be happy like me.
  • It's to rate websites which review content for disabled people on criteria relating to how easily accessible their website is to the disabled. I apply the details and recommendations supplied by W3's Web Accessibility Initiative Evaluation Overview [w3.org]

    So far, the games they review score significantly higher than the AbleGamers website.
  • by KermodeBear (738243) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @07:41AM (#30295732) Homepage

    I suffer from very strong red/green color blindness, which can be very problematic for me in some games. I was happy to see that L4D, and L4D2 include a 'color blindness' option that change some of the colors in the game so that they are easier for me to see.

    Having a ratings system, even if it isn't an official one, is a nice idea.

    The lawsuit though... Not so much. I don't see any legal basis for it. Someone with no legs shouldn't sue Ford because it is hard to drive.

    • by TheRaven64 (641858) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @09:01AM (#30296204) Journal
      That really surprises me. Testing for red-green colour blindness issues is one of the standard things that you do when designing a graphical user interface. It's easy; on most platforms you can map the red and green channels together so you get a rough idea of how our UI will look to colour blind people before you even send it off for testing (and there are a number of automated tests you can run for other common forms of colour perception problems). These affect so many people that if you sell more than ten copies of your program you're likely to have at least one user who will complain if you don't. I'm astonished that it isn't a part of the testing process for games.
      • by yuna49 (905461)

        Trust me, it doesn't seem like a common practice in website design either. I don't think many web designers consider color-blindness at all.

        Not to sound sexist, but I wonder if this has something to do with the higher proportion of women engaged in graphic design. Color-blindness is so rare in their gender that most women I know never think about it as a potential problem.

      • by TubeSteak (669689)

        That really surprises me. Testing for red-green colour blindness issues is one of the standard things that you do when designing a graphical user interface.

        Is testing for red-green color blindness even a standard procedure done for children?

        I remember one of my classmates discovered he was red-green color blind during 5th grade art class because the instructor had us pass around a book that included the color blindness tests. The teacher honestly thought he was joking when he said he couldn't see any numbers.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          That's how I found out. People thought I was kidding when I said I couldn't read the ishihara tests.

          It's a bitch of a disability too, I've had many job opportunities pulled from me because of it, and the misunderstanding of what color blindness actually is.

          Why is that a problem? Because the government doesn't consider color blindness a real disability. Increasing numbers of jobs tack on 'normal color vision' into their job descriptions because some person up the chain thought it would be a good thing to

      • It's not really that simple. I have a major red green problem, but I can see raw red (#ff0000) and green (#00ff00) just fine when set that way by a computer. I can see the red Christmas ball on the green tree as red and green. It's when the red and green begin to approach each other on the way to yellow (#ffff00) where problems arise. For example, I have a hellish time with green and red LEDs from a distance. Color me happy when blue LEDs showed up. ;-)

        I think it's a resolution problem, because if I get my

    • by mattbee (17533)

      Yes, any game where the ability to tell red from green is crucial has always landed it in the bin for me. The worst example was the 11th Hour, where the very first puzzle involved sorting red and green books on a shelf. I spent about 45 minutes with the bloody things dancing in front of me, thinking I'd succeeded when if I looked away, and back again, the colours swapped back. A total failure, though maybe I saved myself from a bad game anyway. I think Popcap were the first I remember adding a "colourbl

  • If you're blind...guess what? You're never doing to drive a car. End of story.

    If you have no legs or can't walk, you're never going to learn karate and becoming a kickboxing champion. End of story
    There are certain things, of course yes we can make more accessible to the disabled, but I'm sorry, gaming is NOT one of them. A recreation that refines split second reflex and hand eye coordination SHOULD NOT BE MUCKED UP so someone with fucking parkinsons can play it 'easier'.
    If you have Parkinson? Sorry y
    • Adding features and options doesn't take off your enjoyment, you just keep them off that's all, and you can go back to gazing your navel all you want.

      • by Shados (741919)

        These features and options have to be implemented. In an industry that is already extremely cutthroat with tight schedules and a revenue model that normally involves taking a loss on 9 product in the hope that the 10 will be a multi billion dollar hit ready for chrismas, that means that every single feature that gets implemented that was not absolutely necessary, is one less bug fixed, one less normal stage added, one less part voice acted.

        • That said, most of the accessible features we are looking for are part of good design practices 101. For the most part we are not asking for special stuff, we want the game to have remappable keys, or played with a mouse, or remappable buttons on a controller. Not hard stuff. Also keep in mind that 17% of the population is disabled. A few accessible feature may just help you be that next blockbuster. As for the rest of your comments, those are all different departments, and I am sure that the voice actor
          • we want the game to have remappable keys, or played with a mouse, or remappable buttons on a controller.

            If your game is designed for multiple controllers plugged into a USB hub, and your players demand support for USB mice, you're going to have a hard time reading multiple mice through popular PC operating systems.

            As for the rest of your comments, those are all different departments, and I am sure that the voice actor is not being asked to fix bugs

            The money paid to a temp to work on a bug is money that isn't paid to a voice actor.

          • by Shados (741919)

            I would agree with you. Except that lately, its hard to get a game that works at ALL on release day. There's very few continually profitable game development companies, there's only a subset of those that actually make games that work at all for NORMAL gamers. Now you expect them to make them work for all gamers? 17% of people are disabled. On that 17%, how many can play games at all? From whats left, how many are just color blind? (I remember at some point people asking Bioware to modify a color-based puzz

        • by sorak (246725)

          These features and options have to be implemented. In an industry that is already extremely cutthroat with tight schedules and a revenue model that normally involves taking a loss on 9 product in the hope that the 10 will be a multi billion dollar hit ready for chrismas, that means that every single feature that gets implemented that was not absolutely necessary, is one less bug fixed, one less normal stage added, one less part voice acted.

          And this is why disabled gamers shouldn't have a website telling which games are best for them?

        • So I figure there's ample time to implement since Warcraft 3 came with a blooper reel and hydralisks and I know no game that doesn't have easter eggs.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by ph0rk (118461)
      Don't ever tell me what I can't do!
      • I was just about to say!

        It's not that I can't drive a car because I'm legally blind it's that I shouldn't.

        There are a lot of folks around here that seem to think that being handicapped is a binary thing, yeah, technically I'm blind, but I play video games, engage in photography and create artwork.

        Every now and then I run into problems with games because of my vision but I cope with it, when Metal Gear Solid 2 came out and I found that I couldn't see the little red dot for aiming the gun, I just didn't buy t

    • by sorak (246725)

      Can you name one single instance in which anything has been mucked up, to accommodate the handicapped? Sure, some people had to put wheelchair ramps on their businesses, and the best parking spaces are handicapped, but, really, has anything in your life ever been inconvenienced in the slightest way, for the sake of accommodation?

    • by tepples (727027)

      If you have no legs or can't walk, you're never going to learn karate

      I beg to differ: Mr. No Legs [youtube.com]

      Sorry you simply can play games that require a steady refined hand.

      The whining is about games that require steadiness for no necessary reason.

    • So what you're saying is that not only are all disabled people equally unable to perform certain tasks, the rest of society should not make any effort to make it possible for them to narrow the gap, nor should we make any effort to indicate to them which products may suit their constraints?

      Have I got that about right?

      You know what, despite you being a complete ass, I'll concede that you are entirely correct just as soon as you win a foot race against Oscar Pistorius [wikipedia.org].

      Let me know how that goes.

  • In the UK we have the Disability Discrimination Act (‘DDA’) ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disability_Discrimination_Act_1995 [wikipedia.org] ) This requires that service providers do not provide a disabled person with a lesser degree of service than a person who is not disabled and that they make reasonable adjustments to facilitate this. Any public website based in the UK would be bound by this legislation. Cases are heard in a criminal court with a jury. Statute law does not define what constitutes a disabil
  • That would explain that easily-fraggable player I met last night in Halo. xX_Hellen_Killer_Xx just kept spinning around looking skyward while filling the mic channel with mad mumbling noises.
  • 1. Handicapped people, much like everyone else, want to play games and are willing to pay money to do so.
    2. People who make games want to sell games.
    3. Handicapped people, much like everyone else, are reluctant to throw away $60 on a game they may not be able to play.

    Seems like someone should have the job of creating a set of developer tools along the lines of "Unreal Engine - Color Blind" or "DirectAccessibility". Games with such features could then bear an industry logo, white D-pad on blue field or
    • The only problem is that these kind of developments take time. Time to code, time to test.

      Now, in the time that it takes me to code and test for a handicapped persion, could I implement another feature that will make my game more popular to the general populace?

      If 1 out of every 10 people are blind, and 1 out of every 10 blind people want to play video games, thats 1 person for every 100 they are catering too. Now, say 9 out of 10 people aren't blind, and 5 out of 10 those want to play your game - what is m

      • by gedrin (1423917)
        Yes, that is the problem.
        A small portion of society is handicapped in a way that creates a hurdle to playing games. Only so much money will be spent to cater to a small segment of the market.
        This doesn't seem that remarkable to me. In fact, it seems rather apropriate. I'm not arguing that baseline toolkits for accessability features are a magic wand that will fix everyone's problems without cost. I'm simply saying that if DirectX had tools, or some enterprising colorblind (or whatever) programmer built
        • I think the idea of building it into the next DirectX Release would be good, as far as I know it's really just altering some hues so that two different colours don't come up as the same shade.

          However, I'm not sure exactly how other disabilities are able to cope. More and more games come out with Subtitles for Dialogue, and some few games even add SFX subtitles to Help those hard of hearing.

          What else can be done?

  • I myself am seriously incapable of distinguishing between tones.

    When I was a kid playing Myst I had to talk my mom into doing the tone matching puzzle for me, because I absolutely could not do it.

    Did I sue them? No. I accepted the fact that there are some things I'm just not wired for, and I sucked it up and moved on with my life.

    I'm all in favor of making things accessible, but there's a big difference between a traffic light and a video game. One being designed with poor accessibility will limit a few peo

Is a person who blows up banks an econoclast?

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