On my way to work this morning, I found this link on Twitter; http://www.pocketgamer.biz/news/58973/ukie-to-host-global-accessibility-awareness-day-game-jam-in-london/. My reaction was “This is excellent. Bringing the issues of accessibility to the awareness of developers in the form of a game jam is perfect.” So me, being me, I praised the this jam on Twitter. What happened next was I got numerous links to another game jam; http://jams.gamejolt.io/accessibilityjam. This one I’ll be participating in.
Why is the issue of accessibility so important? And why do I mention it at given every opportunity (which is nearly every day)?
Good accessibility design means that more players can enjoy your games. Excellent accessibility design means that nearly everyone can enjoy your games regardless of disabilities.
For those of you who follow me on Twitter will know that I suffer from hearing issues. Sometimes, they’re mild; other times, well, let’s just say that Van Gogh had the right idea of chopping off his ear. Subtitles are the most important feature of a game for me (and films, but that’s another issue!) If a game doesn’t have subtitles, I sure as hell won’t be playing it, unless audio is not a factor of gameplay. If a game doesn’t have easy to read subtitles, I’ll still play it but then I’ll just rant about it for quite a while (see: Tomb Raider).
Not only do I have a personal stake in accessibility, but I also believe that good tutorial design comes from good accessibility design and vice versa. And we all know my stance on tutorial design!
To find out more about why accessibility is important, read this beautiful article from Jordan Erica Webber; http://www.kotaku.co.uk/2014/04/30/disabled-gamers-part-world
To find out more about accessibility design hit up these links;