Perception creators hope to make their game accessible to gamers with low vision

The Deep End Games believes in making their games playable for everyone, not just the able-bodied.

The creators of Perceptiona first-person horror adventure and not yet fully funded Kickstarter game, recently expressed their desire to make the game playable for all audiences, not just the able-bodied.

As Perception is told through the perspective of Cassie, a blind protagonist, the team at The Deep End Games is interested in including gamers with low-vision in their target audience.

President and founder of the studio Mark Barlet says:

"If you can create an accessible game that’s also a lot of fun, then you’ve created a differentiator in a very crowded space."

A bit about Perception:

The game is designed to emulate the experience of a blind person through both the presentation of aural landscapes and the game mechanics.  You must navigate and map out Cassie's surroundings using sound, aided only by her cane and her smartphone.

The horror aspects of the game make excellent use of the perpetual darkness of Cassie's world. The Presence that hunts Cassie is made all the more terrifying by its mysterious and ambiguous form.

Perception is a rare example of a video game with representation of a blind character.  Amanda Gardner, one of Perception's creators, says:

"We need protagonists who are differently abled.  We need representation of all different types of people."

The Plan:

The development team would like to release at least two versions of the game: one for fully-sighted players, and one designed for players with low vision.  

The low-vision version of the game will have large subtitles, text-to-speech support, and high-contrast images. The team is also still looking for ways to make the game accessible to people who are fully blind.

The Perception creative team has been collaborating with individuals and groups involved with supporting those with disabilities, such as The AbleGamers Charity.

Mark Barlet explains that companies must include people with disabilities in the development and game testing process:

"When we have a diverse workforce, we create better products."

Sound awesome to you?  Help them out!

Perception is still short of its minimum goal of $150,000, with less than a week to go.  Currently they're at a little over $120,000 with more than 3,000 backers.  

Published Jun. 19th 2015
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