(Link to Paralyzed the Game => http://paralyzedgame.blogspot.ca/)
Video Game Description:
For my final term project, I created a spaceship indie action video game, “Paralyzed,” which is developed in Unity3D. In this game, players control a badly damaged and largely immobile ship while enemy invaders are attempting to attack their ship. The main objective of the game is for players to defend themselves from these enemy attackers. Moreover, other challenges for players to overcome include blinding or deafening threats, meaning players sometimes cannot see or hear when enemies are approaching. These threats showcase that the ship is, in fact, damaged, causing players to feel vulnerable while playing the game.
The challenges of operating this ship is representative of what many disabled people in the real world endure every day. Non-disabled people in the real-world have the luxury of returning to their fully functioning abilities, but these blinding and deafening threats are meant to showcase that video games are more difficult to play when taken-for-granted abilities (i.e. sight and hearing) are taken away from players. This challenging gameplay caused by blinding and deafening threats is the reality for many disabled players for every game they play.
Imagine that you are unable to play your favorite video games because you are blind, deaf, or have another disability. Richard Moss notes that after gamer Carlos Vasquez became blind, he was devastated that he could no longer play video games the same way ever again; however, Vasquez noticed that he could still listen to gameplay sounds in order to play video games, but not to his best (or non-disabled) abilities (Moss). Jamin Warren of PBS Game/Show says many non-disabled players do not “realize it, or take notice, until it happens to [them],” showcasing that these players do not consider the trials and tribulations that disabled players must endure every time they play a video game (Warren). The purpose of my game is to further promote awareness of the challenges disabled gamers must overcome to play video games that are designed for non-disabled gamers. Thus, my game could encourage video game developers to create video games that are designed for disabled gamers, promoting social change in the video game industry.
As a game developer myself, I installed certain features into my game, such as audio and text, in order to help players get through the different stages. I find it perplexing that most game developers do not add features specially designed for disabled gamers. If game developers are able to add complex features into video games, such as stretching/shrinking game display screens based on players’ preferences, and being able to adjust the brightness of the screen, it should be feasible for them to add features to help disabled gamers play their games. For example, game developers could install colorblindness options, indicators for deaf gamers, and sounds effects for blind gamers.
In conclusion, my game will spread awareness to non-disabled players about the challenges disabled gamers face when playing video games. This awareness could cause a shift in the video game industry to create new content, features, or entire games designed for disabled gamers.
By: Lauren Hamilton
Warren, Jamin. “How Are Games Biased Against the Disabled? | Game/Show | PBS Digital Studios.”
YouTube. Google.com, 14 Aug. 2014. Web. 25 Mar. 2015. https://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=IyASY5wv_Qo
Moss, Richard. “Why Games Accessibility Matters.” Polygon. Vox Media Inc, 6 Aug. 2014. Web. 25 Mar.