Thanks. You made sense. A game designed for the blind came immediately to mind as I heard your description. Some of the mainstream games would sound like a more realistic, very much more advanced version of the fight in the bar in the original ESP Pinball Classic. You block a punch when you hear it coming rather than, ouch!, too late!

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Laughter is the best medicine, so look around, find a dose and take it to heart. ----- Original Message ----- From: "Thomas Ward" <thomasward1...@gmail.com>
To: "Gamers Discussion list" <gamers@audyssey.org>
Sent: Wednesday, February 09, 2011 9:47 AM
Subject: [Audyssey] Clearing Up Some Myths About Mainstream Games


Hi everyone,

As moderator and an interested party I've read almost everything
written on the "frustrated with the blind gaming community" topic and
it seams to me one of the biggest issues here is clear cut
communication between those who are in the know and those who aren't.
There are a lot of myths expressed by many of the VI gamers who don't
have any experience with mainstream games. I'd say most if not all of
the myths are based on ignorance of what the other side is trying to
say.

For example, let's take the term "vidio game." One person said that
the word "vidio" meant that you had to  have sight to play these games
because the word "vidio" is a visual term. This is not necessarily
true.

To start with obviously vidio games have graphics and animation.
However, that isn't the beginning and ending of the game. There are
sounds, music, etc that have become extremely realistic over the past
ten to fifteen years or so. This means as things like 3d audio have
advanced and games use wav files instead of beeps and so on it has
made it more possible for us to listen carefully and play a number of
games through sound. Nobody is saying this is easy, but that it is
possible.

The second issue is types of games. It is not really possible to pick
up a first-person or third-person vidio game and begin playing it by
sound because of complex level layouts, too many items to find/pick
up, and over all it is just very very complex to manage without sight.
Although, I have actually done it after an insane amount of practice.
However, this doesn't mean there aren't vidio games we can't just pick
up and play. There are wrestling games like Smackdown VS Raw that is
fairly playable without sight. There are the music games like Guitar
Hero and Rockband that can be played with some practice. There are
fighting games like DC VS Mortal Kombat that are fairly accessible to
play with some practice at it. There is a very good reason why the
fighting genre of games in particular are fairly accessible to play by
a blind individual.

First, someone said, "it isn't very strategic to keep punching when
the enemy is on the ground." That wouldn't happen for one very good
reason. In a fighting game you can hear the enemy fall and hit the
ground. If you know what that sounds like you aren't going to stand
there mindlessly kicking and punching thin air. You'll know they are
on the ground by the sound he/she makes when they fall. Okay?

The second issue is someone said, "if you have already been punched
you can't block it." Again this indicates ignorence of how advanced
these fighting games are. There are actually two attack sounds. There
is the sound of the punch, kick, whatever coming and there is the
sound of it connecting with your body. If you are paying attention,
listening carefully, you can hear the attack coming and either attempt
to dodge it or block it in some way.  In this way even though you
can't physically see the attack coming on screen there is plenty of
audio queues to give you advanced warning of what is happening.


Basically, what I'm saying is the main reason guys like Yohandy are
into playing these fighting games is it can be done, and there is
plenty of audio queues and sounds to make it more than possible to do
totally blind. It is cases like this were vidio has nothing to do with
weather or not you can play it because the audio really is fairly
equal to what is happening on screen.

Finally, there is the issue of menus and things like that. Yeah, this
is something of a hastle. It takes a bit of memorization, but there
are work arounds. One way is simply to take a sheet of braille paper,
put it in your brailler, and type up a list of what every menu item is
for this or that game. Sure it isn't as straight forward as a talking
menu, but it is an easy work around for a problem.

One way I look at this is to look at it this way. How many times have
you gone to a regular store like K-Mart, Wal-Mart, etc and purchased a
standard board game like Monopoly or picked up a deck of playing
cards, taken it home, and brailled up the game. I've done it many many
times. I never purchase games through Independant Living aids, because
I can do exactly the same thing for a fraction of the cost with a
braille writer and a roll of dimo tape in most cases.

This is what I mean by there are work arounds. All of us are blind
living in a sighted world. Most of us by now have figured out if we
want to do something bad enough it can be done. I'm not saying playing
mainstream games like Street Fighter, DC VS Mortal Kombat, etc is for
everybody. No, I know it is not. However, for those who are a bit
curious, perhaps interested at looking at it, you should give it a
try. For those who aren't interested, but constantly make uneducated
comments like, "I don't want to stand there punching at air while the
enemy is on the ground," please stop. All you are doing is muddying
the water with your uneducated point of view. To make it clear "if you
don't have anything constructive to say don't say it at all."

Thanks.

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