Hi Thomas,

Oh Q9 is definitely simplistic, and that was one of my goals when designing it. It was not initially intended to be commercial at all, it was a commission from the institute for the blind over here. They wanted a game for children aged between 10 and 14, and Q9 was the result. But by the terms of my contract I retained all the rights to the production, so I extended the game with a bunch of extra levels and a boss etc, and sold it in English. But when I started out I did so with the intention of creating a simplistic game that someone with no gaming experience whatsoever could just pick up and play. And I reached that goal. The game is very simple, while still offering some points of interest. My upcoming game, while still a sidescroller, is leaps and bounds above Q9 in every respect.


Personally I don't know very much about video games, and since I can't really play them (at least not in the same way a sighted person could), I don't have any particular interest in them. So while the gaming industry might have moved away from platformers, I still very much enjoy them and so I will create them. Smile.

Kind regards,

Philip Bennefall
----- Original Message ----- From: "Thomas Ward" <thomasward1...@gmail.com>
To: <phi...@blastbay.com>; "Gamers Discussion list" <gamers@audyssey.org>
Sent: Tuesday, March 08, 2011 9:46 AM
Subject: Re: [Audyssey] Seamlessly upgrading DirectX


Hi Philip,

Philip wrote:

I know what you mean, and agree with you. But I also feel that it very
much depends
on what types of games you make. You, being a lover of all things that
is 3d as far
as I can gather, probably see it as a much bigger issue not being able
to take advantage
of the fabulous sound that a true 3d landscape can give.

My reply:

Very true. I think my love of3d first-person and third-person games
has to do with the fact that by the 1990's I was both sighted and was
playing games like Quake, Doom, Tomb Raider, Jedi Knight, Elite Force,
etc on a regular basis. Quite naturally I got use to that style of
game, and after I lost my sight they happened to be the most
inaccessible from a gaming standpoint. I was very excited when GMA
produced Shades of Doom, because they proved it was possible to create
those kinds of games and make them relatively accessible to a blind
gamer. That's when I really began to seriously think about creating my
own games, because I understood if I didn't do it I doubted many
others would really produce games I would like.

For instance, let's look at Q9 for a moment. Don't get me wrong I like
the game, but it is a bit on the simplistic side from my point of
view. It sort of reminds me of the old walk along beat-m-up arcade
games from the 1980's where you basically walked along beat up a thug,
enemy ninja, alien, whatever and then walked along until the next
enemy appeared. Once and a while there were traps and things like that
to avoid/jump over too. While that style of game isn't bad, many of
them are quite famous, all the same they really went out of fassion in
the late 80's and early 90's. By the mid 90's everything had gone from
the 2d platformers to first-person and third-person and really added a
totally different dimention to gaming. Which was exactly where I was
when I lost my sight.

So you are right. I am especially hit hard by the fact I'm probably
one of the only accessible game developers willing to spend the time
and money on 5.1 surround sound. That doesn't mean my customers are
though which really puts me in something of a bind. I can use a
generic pan control which works for stereo setups, but just doesn't
sound the same and is a tad bit infurior for me since I've put a few
hundred into getting a high quality audio setup for games.

Philip wrote:

I choose to do this as to not force my users to go out and buy
additional hardware
in order to play my game. The community is small enough as it is and
sales are sparse,
and so limiting them even further by having above average hardware
requirements would
be like shooting myself in the foot.

My reply:

Yes, I know. As it happens the Windows release of MOTA 3D which is
still in production currently uses only stereo and 3d for that exact
reason. I realise in order to sell it someone has to have the proper
equipment/hardware and why put extra work into 3d audio if 99% of the
community can't even use it anyway. Plus as has bmentioned DirectSound
and Windows 7 don't exactly get along together and the 3d audio
doesn't work correctly on Win Vista/Windows 7. So I've decided to hold
off on 3d audio until I have access to something like XAudio2. At that
time I'll decide what to do. Probably it will have to offer both
stereo and 3d virtualization depending on the persons setup as you
said.

Cheers!

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