Hi Neophyte,

Yes, I still own and run USA Games. Our website is
and right now we are working on our new cross-platform initiative.
Since I am primarily a Linux user myself I've began the process of
producing games for Linux while maintaining support for Windows.
Eventually, I will be porting the Linux versions of our games to Mac
OS as well. So, yes, we are most definitely still around.

As far as rigging up a Linux system with accessibility I definitely
can help out with that. My personal recommendation is to use Ubuntu
10.10 since it comes with Orca, and Ubuntu is both widely known and
very accessible out of the box. Alternatively there is a version of
Ubuntu, called Vinux, that someone made that takes a standard Ubuntu
base and adds some accessibility improvements such as Speakup, has
Orca configured from the start, and has added and removed some
packages for improved accessibility. Vinux is alright, not a problem,
but I tend to use Ubuntu 10.10 instead of Vinux for the fact it is
more mainstream.So I'd start with either one of those options.

In terms of playing text adventures, roll playing games, the strange
names of races, aliens, etc usually aren't a problem. most screen
readers have an exception dictionary that allows you to change how the
screen reader speaks this or that word. For example, the name
"Cerberus" is supposed to be spoken with a hard c, but Orca speaks it
with a soft c. I can open up Orca's exception dictionary and do
something like this.

Cerberus = ker-ber-us

That would instantly create an exception so that everytime Orca sees
the name "Cerberus" it would speak it with a hard c sound instead of a
soft c sound. You can do this with just about any word, name, etc and
that's how we get by with oddball names that the screen reader
wouldn't necessarily speak correctly.


On 11/2/10, neoph...@inthecompanyofgrues.com
<neoph...@inthecompanyofgrues.com> wrote:
> Hey there, Dark, Ben and Thomas,
> Thanks for the welcome.
> To be honest, I haven't tried to many audio only games. I'm still trying
> to get my head around the different types of screen readers and how they
> work. I understand that the software and hardware are separate beasts,
> each with their own little ideosyncrasies, but I'm looking to set up a
> little e e PC laptop, which runs Linux, as a portable accessibility
> machine. If you have any recommendations for rigging that up, I'd love to
> hear them.
> My real interest has been interactive fiction, although the idea behind
> the Eamon games and text-only role playing games interests me, too.
> Fallthru sounds good and I hope to check that out soon, but I am
> wondering, wouldn't all the strange names for the races and creatures
> wreak havoc with your screen reader?
> Thanks again for the welcome!
> Finally, this question to Tom: you used to run USA games, is that right?
> Do you still have a company set up?
> Cheers,
> Neophyte

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