IGDA Game Accessibility Special Interest Group

Special Effect - Accessible Gaming Charity



Special Effect logo, beneath an image of a young boy in a wheelchair playing an accessible game."SpecialEffect is perhaps the only charitable organisation dedicated to helping ALL young people with disabilities to enjoy computer games. GASIG member Barrie Ellis of OneSwitch.org.uk is presently working with Special Effect on their latest exciting project to bring accessible games to disabled children in and around Oxford (UK).

Barrie is helping initially to gather four different accessible gaming set-ups based around a Laptop (XP), Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360 and a Playstation 2. The next step is to find and train a small group of passionate volunteers to take this equipment out to clubs, schools, hospitals and so on.

The plan is for the project to run until around June/July this year, but the hope is this will be just the start and that this work will spread to other parts of the UK and beyond. Read more on the Special Effect Facebook page.

Some great gaming gear has been pledged so far from generous companies and organisations, which shall be detailed later. If anyone wishes to donate games or anything that might help - please visit the Special Effect web-site or contact Barrie directly through OneSwitch.org.uk.

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Robert Florio - Crave Online Interview



Image of Robert Florio playing Tomb Raider using the head-operated Quad Controller.
Entitled "Against All Odds", IGDA GASIG activist, Robert Florio tells Crave Online how it's been for him and all about Accessible Gaming. A great interview that all developers should read.

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AbleGamers Gets to Chat with Age of Conan



Image of Conan the Barbarian comic - (c) Marvel."Jason Stone is a game designer at Funcom, developers of the highly anticipated MMO Age of Conan based on the writings of Robert E Howard. Robert E. Howard was the creator of 'Conan the Barbarians' born in the pages of the legendary Depression-era pulp magazine Weird Tales. Jason took the time to have a chat with AbleGamers..."

Via: AbleGamers

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Lightglove: Virtual Controller





There's a lot of potential in this great device - even in music (although you might not believe it from the rendition of Smoke on the Water in this clip!). See LightGlove.com for more.

Via: Reseau Nouvelle Technologies

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Milling About Second Life using Brain Waves





Although not strictly a game, "Second Life" has many sub-games. It has also garnered the attention of people wishing to improve it's accessibility for more players. The video above shows brain waves being used to control the on-screen character around it's environment. One switch "Second Life" coming soon too...

Via: Dove Lane and Linden Lab

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Videojuegos accesibles



Image of a three pane Spanish comic strip titled 'Encountered Opinions'. The first pane is of a man playing Wii Bowling and reads: 'Yahoo, Another Strike! The WII is sooo cool...' - The second pane is of a man playing another Wii game and reads: Wooha, another guy to the floor... who's next? The Wii is sooo cool... - The final pane is of a man with one-arm holding a Wii remote with dangling Nun-chuk controller that he can't hold complaining, 'What? I lost again? The Wii is a crap...'I've just been sent some great links from Samuel Franco Dominguez to Spanish and French accessible gaming articles, some of which I thought I'd share.

Click on the image above for an English translation - although I think you might get the gist from the pictures and final word alone! Wii problems...

Spanish blog entry on Accessible Gaming (translated below):

"If you like a game but think it will be difficult or impossible to play due to paralysis in your arms or hands, tremors, loss of dexterity, amputation, smaller hands, abnormalities of birth or rheumatism, you will be interested this article. You can still play if you know how to find an appropriate controller.

So begins one of the articles that I have sent Samuel Franco Dominguez, a resident "MIR" doctor of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. He conducts his work at the Hospital Nacional de Paraplejicos de Toledo (Spain), who are interested in new technologies applied to the rehabilitation and accessibility to information technology and communication.

The article in question is about the accessibility of video games for people with physical disabilities. Listing the positive and negative effects of video games, analysis of physical barriers and presenting their solutions. This work has been published in a summary of the latest newsletter CEAPAT, but the author gives us full to share it with all of you.

Descargar artículo Videojuegos accesibles, de Samuel Franco (PDF, 4,53 MB). "

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No School Like The Old School?



Image of Atari VCS game Super Breakout.It's not something that any mainstream publisher does now, but in 1981 and 1982, Atari did. What, you may ask? Simply, they included a "special [accessibility] feature" option in their top-flight games. Not only this, but they marked the fact clearly on their game boxes and instructions. The disabled gamers in mind were very young kids with slower reactions and abilities. The features generally slowed game play down and made things a lot less hectic and weighted against you. These games were:

Super Breakout, Defender, Missile Command, Pac-Man, Asteroids, Berzerk and Yars Revenge.

The IGDA's GASIG have been talking about a ratings system for some time now regarding accessibility features in games. To date only 7-128 Software and Deaf Gamers seem to have anything like this in place. It would be fantastic to see something like this take a hold, as age ratings have with PEGI. One day...

Via: OneSwitch.org.uk Blog

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Gordon's Trigger Finger



Half-Life 2 PC Game Cover."Hey Folks, We made our [one switch] mod available for download on our website HelpYouPlay.com.

If you have a copy of HalfLife 2 DeathMatch try it out [it allows you to play using just the SPACE BAR]. All feed back is welcome. The bot occasionally gets stuck but you can kill yourselfby pressing the 'K' key.We are working on a version that allows you to play the full halflife 2 game.

Eelke Folmer - Game interaction design www.helpyouplay.com"

Via: IGDA GASIG Mailing List

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