Taking into consideration EVERY human on Earth.
The lecture content this week was an eye-opener for me. It had never occurred to me that a lot of people can not interact with entertainment in the way that I do. I can see the full spectrum of colours and can even differentiate slight hue changes between colours, I can read sentences without getting letters within words jumbled up, I can hear in a range between 20Hz and 20,000 Hz and I am able to use both hands to write on a keyboard reasonably quickly and with easy mobility. A lot of people can not do some of these and it didn’t even cross my mind.
Who is this ‘Default Man’?
I am not totally oblivious to the fact that everybody is different. I am a straight, white, middle-class male aged 18-40, also named by Grayson Perry as the ‘Default Man’. By all the demographics I have just stated, I know there are many different groups that people conform to. In our day-to-day lives, we are told that it is correct to believe black and white people are equal, gays and straights are equal, and that males and females are equal, but this is an inaccurate statement when you view humanity at large.
The UK Population Infographic – http://bit.do/defaultman
In games, it is the same story; the trend being that their main characters are straight, white, 18-40-year-old males. I have grown up with this trend being criticized, therefore I have come to know that there are minorities in these demographics. Less talked about are the blind, the deaf and the disabled. These guys and girls are still as interested in games as the ‘Default Man’ (Perry, 2014) and people who conform to being black, gay and female are.
The sensory disabled, along with other disabled people, are even more so left out when it comes to games. This is a different type of exclusion to being gay, dark-skinned or female, as creating games so that the disabled population can play it, is a lot more work for game developers than to just remodel a game character.
A Type of controller for the disabled – http://bit.do/disabledcontroller
There is a website I found that focusses on what game developers can include to help people with disabilities play their game. The Game accessibility guidelines (http://gameaccessibilityguidelines.com) page provides ‘Basic’, ‘Intermediate’ and ‘Advanced’ lists of features that can be included to better your game to cater for disabled players. The ‘Full list’(http://gameaccessibilityguidelines.com/full-list) page combines all the elements of the three levels provided so you can include elements from all three levels for the different disability supports.
Levels of inclusion of mechanics – http://bit.do/disabledinclusion
Nobody is the same.
I will absolutely refer to the provided list, and try my hardest to include most elements, even if they are all from the ‘Basic’ list, for the games I make in the industry. I am all for helping people access all elements in my games. Nobody is the same but we are all players and should all be able to, with ease, play games no matter who we are. If my players are ‘black Muslim lesbians in wheelchairs’ (Perry, 2014), I want them to have the same, enjoyable experience as the ‘Default Men’ would playing my games.
Perry, G. (2014). Grayson Perry: the rise and fall of default man. Retrieved October 25, 2015 from http://www.newstatesman.com/culture/2014/10/grayson-perry-rise-and-fall-default-man
This is Daniel Jochem, signing out.