Completed actions in 2016

We have made progress on several actions, some are now complete, some ongoing while others remain to do. Here is a compilation of all current actions and the status of each.

Advocate for greater accessibility at GDC/Moscone

Status: complete

Discussions had, not achievable due to the increased scope of the advocacy track, meaning that sessions cannot be scheduled close to each other, either in time or location. Instead, the feedback will be rolled into #GAConf plans, with all sessions taking place on a single day in a single room.

Educate tool and engine developers about accessibility support

Status: in progress

Further discussions had with key people at several engines. Two are now 100% interested in receiving materials, another is potentially interested. Now need to adapt Chad’s initial auditing work into report format and circulate, including examples either of other tools that already implement features, or games implement the desired end result. This is a key effort to lower the threshold for developers, and something we should put more focus into.

Research and produce bolt-on curriculum material for higher education courses

Status: In progress

Our efforts to research and produce bolt on curriculum material for higher education courses continues. A milestone was achieved with a curriculum framework in two peer-reviewed research papers. Now open educational resources need to be co-created and shared to ease the process for educators, as well as for auto-didacts. A piece of work to collate existing resources (tutorials, talks, articles) could be valuable.

SIG website update

Status: In progress

Now unblocked, Chad is currently working on migration of the current site over to the main IGDA servers. Once migration has been completed, restructuring and retheming work can commence. Restructuring will be a UX project, retheming will involve adapting an off-the-shelf responsive theme to be in line with WCAG2:AA.

Push for accessibility information in storefronts such as Steam

Status: In progress

Itch.io have now provided the SIG with full press logins, so auditing work can commence as soon as enough people have enough time available. Goal is to compare accuracy of the developer-submitted information across different categories, and propose any changes that might be helpful for improving accuracy, building towards a best-practice case study that other storefronts can learn from.

Advocate for improved switch accessibility on mobile devices

Status: ongoing

Previously complete, but reopened. Advocating for further improvements across platforms, such as the hold at point functionality that was introduced in iOS10 in September, making huge numbers of on button games compatible with accessibility switches overnight/

Present at research conferences

Status: ongoing

Two papers presented on SIG activities, and workshop held at ICEC2016 in September.

Research about game accessibility is also going forward in general. A search in Google Scholar on ”game accessibility” (exact phrase) during 2016 shows 74 results (excluding patents and quotes). A caveat is that this search also includes books and some articles may not be peer-reviewed. https://goo.gl/C09cqL

Speak on accessibility and silver games in game developer classes and conferences

Status: ongoing

Members speaking at a wide range of conferences, including GDC, CSUN (both of which had record numbers of game accessibility talks in 2016), PAX, Nordic Game, Epic UX summit, and Playstation Experience. GASIG invited to Microsoft Ability Summit for a panel. Ongoing educational content and guest lectures, including Siobahn’s Enable Gamers programme receiving industry recognition at the TIGA awards. Tara also doing great things through Evolve’s twitch channel.

Broaden Global Game Jam accessibility challenge

Status: Complete

Organisers not keen on having a separate challenge, so has now instead been fully integrated into the ongoing mainstream diversifiers process. Global Game Jam now has an executive producer who is a strong accessibility advocate (Giselle Rosman), as a result GGJ 2016 had a record number of accessibility diversifiers, taken up by many thousands of developers.

Accessibility criteria in game funding programmes

Status: Ongoing

Dialogue opened with a national industry body who are interested in implementing accessibility into an upcoming government investment programme, using Film Victoria/Screen Australia/Creative Europe as case studies

Festivals and awards: advocate for accessibility categories

Status: In progress

TIGA award re-established as part of broader diversity efforts, Australian Game Developer awards running their accessibility category for the 4th year

Pre-GDC summit

Status: In progress

Event announced, sponsors in place, most speakers confirmed, venue booked. www.gaconf.com

Support for disabled developers

Status: In progress

Looking into possibilities of supporting the initial stages of a new group, with some initial activity at GDC17

Accessibility how-to blog posts and articles on sites like Gamasutra

Status: Ongoing

A number published by members over the year, IGDA-GASIG gamasutra account now active for cross-posting of articles from the SIG website

 

Full action list available at
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1vvDqoJkpcTiDZ3iyJpEk3eiQO1L62Ffd5DV1cxZo4Ns/edit#gid=0

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