The lights are on
AbleGamers, a community Web site for gamers with disabilities, honors one mainstream game each year that offers an abundant amount of accessibility features for gamers of different abilities. While it’s nearly impossible for a game to be 100 percent accessible to all, Bioware’s Dragon Age: Origins (PC) comes pretty close and has been named the 2009 Mainstream Accessible Game of the Year.
“The Dragon Age team is honored to win this award,” said Mark Darrah, executive producer of Dragon Age: Origins. “We try to appeal to as broad of an audience as we can and accessibility is certainly part of this effort. It makes me proud to have the game this well received by the community.”
Notable game accessibility features found in the PC version of Dragon Age include multiple subtitle options (on or off, or subtitles that include text for ambient noise), multiple control options, enlarged font size and colorblind-friendly status bars, option to pause battles and execute commands, different levels of difficulty and more.
AbleGamers has awarded BioWare for creating a critically-acclaimed title that offers a wide range of features to assist gamers of different abilities, and thus make the game enjoyable for more people. What are your thoughts on making mainstream games more accessible?
Anytime one can create a game that can be enjoyed by the most amount of people it is a good thing. The best thing is that the developer didn't "dumb" down the AI or simplify to a one-button control to get more gamers interested. They did a good job of making it accessible while not turning off everyone else.
I'm surprised an RPG won.
thats a good award for a good game
I may not care now, but in 85 years I'll be playing Dragon Age as a "360 Classic" on my XBox 3600 and I'll be thankful.
Bravo for Bioware!
When I first read this, I thought "Accessible" was used with respect to "accessibility" in terms of age groups/gaming ability, and hence was legitimately confused.
Once -that- was cleared up, I still can't help but not give it much value anyway. It's not like this'll increase the popularity of the game per se (the award, not the features), at least I can't imagine it would.
So, hooray for Bioware, I guess.
In my opinion, this is bioware's masterpiece. Can't wait 4 the expansion pack.
Thanks, @Ishimura 2 Step you are absolutely correct. The club known as "Disability" is an easy club to join, and you are right, you may not need to worry about this now, but a bad moment at a red light on the way to work can get you in the club.
Thanks GI for covering this story.
Also, I have it on good info that the PS9 is going to kick the XBOX3600 butt, and it will have a built in ultra-blu fusion laser drive and 3 USB ports!
I thoroughly enjoyed Bethesda's Elder Scrolls: Oblivion and Bioware's Mass Effect. Would this game be a combination of the two? If so, I'll give it a go...
It's cool that Bioware puts the effort in to help people with disabilities play their games. It's good to see some developers with a little forethought can help people enjoy an excellent game.
Always good to see when developers are helping people that have disabilities instead of disregarding it.
That's a darn good thing.
Thats pretty cool
I actually got a little verklempt reading this. It's awesome to think that, building on really simple innovations like these, my cousin and nephew-in-law (both otherly abled from birth, one with spina bifida, another with cerebral palsy, respectively, and both absolutely crazy about games like every other 8/9 year old boy) won't need to be stuck with lame games as they grow up.
It's even better that it happens to be one of my favorite PC games of the past year.
Well done, BioWare. Well done.
It may not increase the popularity of the game among the general public (not like it needs it, the game is a killer and it's getting rave reviews... at least from me), but it does raise awareness of this game among that particular market.
More importantly though it sends a message to Bioware (and others) that these options are useful, welcome, and appreciated, and so decreases the likelihood they will be left out of future games.
It's all about baby-steps.
Well hey thats good. I guess not too many developers think about the disabled folks, do they?
As a hard-of-hearing gamer, I love the fact that Dragon Age allowed for subtitles of ambient sounds. I often miss the small banter in other games, simply because I can't hear it well enough (or, if I hear it, it sounds garbled to me and I can't actually understand it).
Whoa, an RPG got the accessibility award? Good job Bioware!