A charity that works with developers to improve accessibility for players with disabilities has launched a new scheme to champion Accessible Player Experience (APX) experts and embed them within triple-A studios.
Speaking with PocketGamer.Biz (thanks, GI.biz), AbleGamers CEO Mark Barlet said the program will run alongside the charity’s recently launched accessibility resource portal, Accessible.Games, with a view of enabling studios to think holistically about disability and the barriers that prevent some players from participating.
“The next big thing we’re working on is we are launching a certification program aimed at the industry called Accessible Play Experience Practitioners,” said Barlet. “Basically, it is to be certified in the APX model.”
Accessible.Games explains the APX model by saying it is not enough to simply give players access to the controls of games “so that they can steer a car or shoot an arrow”, but instead to give “them the experience of being Formula 1 driver or an adventurer in a fantasy world”. With APX, the charity is “shifting the aim of accessible design to be about making these experiences possible for players with disabilities through a variety of different options”.
“We’ve found that once we embed champions within the studio space, accessibility becomes a really cheap thing to add,” Barlet said, confirming the charity has already reached out to a number of AAA studios with plans to fully launch the accompanying website later this year.
“You’re gonna see on Accessible.games, by autumn, another box pop up for us to start doing this certification program,” said Barlet. “We’ve already pre-sold over 400 seats for this program.”