Lynsey Graham speaking

Lynsey Graham, experienced designer at Blitz Games Studio, talks about accessibility in games at the Future Everything Summit and it has been posted on YouTube . She mentions that “the really annoying thing is that a lot the things aren’t hard to implement, they have been done before”  and that “it’s something that benefits all players as it gives them choice.”

Some of the bigger and well-known companies have gone the extra mile and she mentions Valve that has and still does offer the most extensive subtitle and closed captioning system in the industry, Sega-published title Bayonetta with its one-handed player mode (as well as an easy mode) and after a player experienced a seizure playing an Ubisoft game, they introduced epilepsy testing in all their games.

I have to add that its not just larger companies that are trying to implement accessible features, Almost Human (developers of The Legend of Grimrock) overhauled their UI to make it more accessible for someone who uses a mouse-stick to play, FTL has a colour-blind mode and Proteus has to be one of the most accessible games I have ever played.

It’s great to see a talk about game accessibility and hear both how frustrating it can be when its absent and how empowering it can be when its present. She mentions that her brother who is severely colour blind, “he is fully deuteranopic, so he is fully green colour blind but we also think he is partially tritanomalous, so he is blue-yellow colour blind as well” struggled for a week to play Call of Duty before giving up due to the use of green and red indicators to differentiate friend from foe. She also mentions that her father who experienced problems with speech, reading and general cognitive problems after his first biopsy for a brain tumour, played scrabble and wipe-out on her PSP and found it both beneficial and empowering.

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