GASIG: Top 10 Ways To Improve Game Accessibility

Image of the IGDA Game Accessibility Special Interest Group (GASIG) Top 10 list of Game Accessibility tips.

1.Allow all controls (mouse, keyboard, gamepad) to be remapped.
2.Add closed-captioning for all dialogue and important sound-effects.
3.Provide documentation in an accessible format (HTML or plain-text).
4.Provide assist modes (auto-targeting, training options, etc).
5.Provide a broad range of difficulty levels from incredibly simple to difficult.
6.Make interface fonts scalable.
7.Allow for high-contrast colour schemes.
8.Add audio tags to all significant elements (actors, doors, items, resulting actions, etc) in true spatial 3D.
9.Allow for a varied range of control over play-speed.
10.Announce accessibility features on packaging.

The above is the original “Top 10 Ways To Improve Game Accessibility” from the IGDA’s Game Accessibility Special Interest Group. We will be reworking this shortly, and plan to bring a centralised point of managable game accessibility advice for designers and programmers. There’s a renewed energy at the GASIG. Good times are ahead.

Meanwhile, here’s a bit of a jumble of superb game accessibility resources: Deaf Gamers Classification system; ResourcesGASIG Top 3 Accessibility Features [for specific game types]; Design Tips for Accessible Games,Reid Kimball: Mockup of Heavy Rain with Closed Captions (aka fully subtitled). Eelke Folmer’s Help You Play wiki. UA-Games articles including the superb Parallel Game Universes; Electronic Soup Podcasts on AudioGames and playing with a Visual Impairment; RetroRemakes – Barriers in Games.

We plan to tidy existing and new game accessibility resources into a much more managable place for people wishing to learn about how to implement effective Game Accessibility features in their games. It’s coming…

Image above and list layout by Tim Chase from 2005ish.

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