Video Games and Accessibility

Video game developers are taking changes to accessibility rules into consideration. At the spring 2018 Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, game developers from Owlchemy gave a presentation called “Accessibility in VR: How It Can Be Better.” The developers shared their own research on the subject gathered from a total of 82 virtual reality games. For each of those games, they attempted to play both sitting and standing, examined the availability of options and what they offered, gauged the reliance on audio, and recorded how much bending or reaching was required to play. 

They found that most VR games, roughly 75 percent, can be played seated. Around 30 percent of games require some level of dexterity, but nearly 25 percent require extensive movement. One particular trend they noticed was that many games would require two hands for its tutorial or start menu, but could actually be played with only one hand from that point onward. The developers admitted “virtual reality developers are a long way from having the solutions to accessibility issues,” but, “mindful awareness and aggressive prototyping” are key to building games that welcome as many people as possible.

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