It might be a tendency for flare to trump overall design in game development, but I've never found a propper 3d audio game to be very accessible at all. It's sort of an uncanny valley thing, where all you have is HRTF, and it is just realistic enough to be confusing and make things like inaudible walls all the more troublesome. The way Swamp does it, IMO, communicates much better than any of the HRTF-enabled games I've played, even though most of the latter include spoken messages to try and help.
In real life, if it can be helped, we don't ever navigate by sound alone—there's texture and proprieception and the way the air moves, smells, and the way sound is affected by the environment (something I have yet to hear in a game, probably because the calculations are kinda extreme). 3d sound alone changes nothing but to distinguish the y/z directions. That's great and all, but so far, it's been a gimmick rather than especially useful.
I'm walking around as I type this, between 2 rooms and a hallway. I have neither taken my hands away from the phone, nor ran into anything, except the one moment I realized I was doing what I was talking about and so my knee picked that moment to find a protruding couch-cushion. When I play free-movement HRTF games without Swamp-style direction-snapping and sonar, I find myself desperately wanting a "put the wall you keep hitting on your left/right" button after 5 minutes of getting lost. So yeah, Swamp doesn't have HRTF, but it lets you align to the compass (IRL you'd do this via walls, curbs, or the sun), and the radar functions a lot like a simplified cane. If we could 'find a way around needing these features, great! It hasn't really been demonstrated, so far as I can tell.
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