Vidgame for blind and sighted players

AudioOdyssey is a prototype for a Wii remote game that enables visually impaired people and sighted people to play together. Developed by students at MIT and the Singapore-MIT Gambit game lab, it's a music-based DJ simulation game that requires the players to make crowd-pleasing dance tracks. The next rev will enable online play. From MIT News Office:
AudiodyseeeeeytttA recent graduate of MIT's Comparative Media Studies program, (Alicia) Verlager, who is blind, helped with the development of the game.

"As a media studies scholar and a blind consumer, I am very excited to see that Eitan and other game developers are working to make games more available to gamers with disabilities, especially when those games can be shared between players with and without disabilities," Verlager said.

"The element I probably most envy about gamers is just the way they hang out together and share doing something fun," she says. "It's the social aspects of Guitar Hero and World of Warcraft that I really want to try myself and so hanging out with other gamers playing AudiOdyssey was really fun."
AudioOdyssey (MIT)

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  1. My wife and I (neither of us are disabled) both love playing the new Sam and Max games together. There’s zillions of old Infocom text adventures out there that offer a very similar kind of gameplay, but with a keyboard-driven, text-only interface. I’d think this would lend itself very well to screen readers and would make for a really enjoyable gaming experience for the seeing-impaired, in groups or alone.

  2. Disclaimer – I don’t play Guitar Hero, and I’m not a DJ. Maybe there are elements of this game that, like Guitar Hero, make it possible for non-musical people to do things that seem like they’re making music. But wouldn’t it be possible to use the same kinds of mixing software that DJs use to, well, do what they do?

    Bill.

  3. This is awesome. Not only is it inclusive playing for blind gamers, but it encourages people to get together. I’d say nearly all of the games I own don’t lend themselves well to blind gamers, which is a disgrace.

    The Wii is an excellent platform for gamers with physical difficulties. There are plenty of news stories of retirement homes that have installed Wii’s to encourage residents to be more active. The Wii is the only really ground-breaking new console, and I hope it encourages more inclusive games.

  4. Another great game that can be played by the visually impaired is SoundVoyager for the Game Boy Advance. The player pilots a sound catching “pellet” & homes in on musical loops as they travel down the screen. Later in the game this is done purely by sound cues & the player must control by listening for the Left/Right stereo balance.

  5. squarefrog: “The Wii is an excellent platform for gamers with physical difficulties … The Wii is the only really ground-breaking new console, and I hope it encourages more inclusive games.”

    Please note that the game is NOT a Wii game, it is a PC game with two control schemes, either the keyboard or a Wii Remote hooked up to a computer via bluetooth. We wanted to open up the Wii Remote to visually impaired gamers but we didn’t have a Wii development kit.

    You can download the game here.

    Eitan (game developer)

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