Accessibility and Rock Band

Accessible Rock BandFrom AbleGamers: “The great people over at Harmonix have sent us two “ROCK BAND – SPECIAL EDITION”, one for Playstation 2, and one for XBOX 360 for us to use in our fund raising efforts for GDC [promoting accessibility at the Game Developers Conference 2009].

We are selling raffle tickets for each at the price of $10… We are only selling 50 tickets for EACH one, so there is a 1 in 50 chance to win (or more if you buy more). We will have the winner selected and sent out as close to Christmas as we can (We are shooting for Dec 15th).” More on the compo here.

Excitingly for OneSwitch is that Harmonix generously sent some kit my way to see what I could do with it to make it more accessible. Now my daughter and her friends are at school (presently known as “The Rockettes”) I’ve got a chance to pull it apart and see what’s what.

Great from the off is that any accessibility switch with a 3.5mm plug (that’s almost all these days) can be connected to act as the bass-drum foot-pedal. So if you can’t use your feet – you may still be able to use any other part of your body to play.

The next brilliant thing is in it’s compatibility with a PC through the USB sockets. I’ve had the Guitar playing riffs via the Guitar Shred Show and drums playing my own samples quite easily using JoyToKey. Following recent accessible music work with William Pilgrim, we’ve got something else in the pipe-line that will work with Rock Band controllers and/or accessibility switches. More coming soon…

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