Press Start on Gaming Accessibility
The gaming industry has finally realising that making gaming accessible to every type of gamer is a vital component of any hardware or game. This is good news for disabled gamers however, as accessibility is in its infancy there is huge scope for improvement. The most important part of making a difference is changing industry thinking so dialogue between disabled gamers and the industry can ultimately improve the game experience for everybody. Just answer this question: Do you really want to lose $$$ and alienate gamers due to inaccessibility?
The XboxOne has the Co-pilot feature, which combines the input from 2 controllers to become 1 input so that 2 people can play as one. Co-pilot would really help me during gaming, as I always have a carer around so it would make it easier for me to direct them rather them having to reposition my arm after a button is pressed.
Microsoft seem to have more commitment to accessible gaming (compared to Sony) as they recently announced at #G4E Gaming & Disability Community Leads Tara Voelker (@LadieAuPair) & Brannon Zahand (@BrannonZ).
Gaming accessibility features that are innovative and Inclusive like co-pilot shouldn’t be console exclusive but a standard accessibility option across the board. In monetary terms, I am sure you’ll earn more $$$ from gamers with disabilities or parents who want to introduce their young child to gaming.
To see what is happening in the gaming industry regarding gaming accessibility The Develop Conference in Brighton on the 11-13 July is the right place. The heavyweights in the gaming industry Bryce Johnson (Xbox), Henry Hoffman (Fiddlesticks), Ian Hamilton (Accessibility Specialist) & Mark Friend (Sony) are on the panel speaking about current accessibility and discuss future practices from developer level though to broader industry initiatives.