They've even hinted that one or two of the games may be made switch accessible, which I keep my fingers crossed for. Meanwhile, here's some links... Switch Arcade Classics, the A.T.E. Arcade (W.I.P.) and AbleGames 2009.
Labels: music video
Picture Puzzle is one of the most accessible one-switch puzzle games ever written. It employs a lovely radar pointer system and a placement assistant. On it's easiest settings, all you need to do is hold your switch down, and the computer will place the segments for you.
Matching Pairs offers four different ways to play, including keyboard, switch, point-and-click device and dwell-clicking. With that it should be just as playable for people using an eye-tracker (with fairly accurate control) as for most other people with vision.
These have both been reviewed over at the Accessible GameBase (links are above) and our freely available to download from Grame's Free Games.
Full subtitles (aka Closed Captions if you live in the USA or Canada) in a game, can make the world of difference to deaf and partially-hearing players. Now that games and films have so many parallels, imagine how hard it would be to follow a film without the sound-track. It's not much a stretch to imagine how hard some games become without sound.
My friend, Reid Kimball, has posted a really helpful Mockup of Heavy Rain with full closed captioning. It shows some of the importance of having the mood of music described, the sound effects as well as the essential dialogue.
Reid is offering a service to advise game developers upon how to best include deaf and partially-hearing players. He definitely knows his stuff, after having worked with the team that modified Doom 3 to include full subtitles, and spending many years supporting the IGDA's Game Accessibility Special Interest Group.
It wasn't that long ago that I felt that Microsoft, and others, were not hearing the pleas of excluded gamers at all. After a nice e-mail from Microsoft earlier this week, I'm now hopeful that things may be taking a positive turn in attitude. Watch this space, and in the interim, I'd recommend reading Steve Spohn's take on Kinect for another view.
"EyeGuitar was developed by Matthew Smalley and supervised by Stephen Vickers and Howell Istance. It utilises the Snap Clutch framework written and developed by De Montfort University, UK and University of Tampere, Finland. Strings on Speed is an Open Source Guitar Hero clone: Centre for Computational Intelligence, De Montfort University."
If that piques your interest, have you also seen Guitar Hero for blind players? More from that stable soon.
What will be there? All sorts of hardware, such as an eye-gaze controller, head-tracker, switches, one-handed controllers and more. What games? You'll have to wait and see, but we'll have PS3, Xbox 360, PCs and even Imagination Sound Controllers. Be great to see you there.
What great fun the Indpendint Charles Show is! Here's Episode 1 and Episode 2 for your convenience (with five left to come as I understand). And if you're finding the sheer wealth of titles on the Xbox 360 Indie Games Service hard to sift through, definitely spend some time over at xnPlay, including at their Essential Collection section, who make things that bit more managable.
In the "full-fat" version, you can hear Dark play each game, whilst explaining what is going on. I was particularly impressed with Tomb-Raider stroke Prince of Persia influenced, Tomb Hunter: Mysteries of the Ancients. I wasn't aware of side-scrolling arcade/adventure audio games before that.
You can listen to all of the ESP's (including the first time a computer ever sang) over at the Accessible GameBase and also at the excellent Access Collective.