• Soft Leaf Studios

Stories of Blossom - Dev Log 02: Focusing on Accessibility

Hey everyone, I hope you are having a great week!


Some of you may be wondering how we plan to make Stories of Blossom accessible. It really comes down to three main points:

  1. Research current industry practices

  2. Start thinking about accessibility at the very beginning of production

  3. Involve disabled gamers in the testing process

A character sheet of Annie the Adventurer, the main character of our game, Stories of Blossom. She is a young girl that has brown hair, is wearing a blue shirt and purple skirt, and is in her bare feet. Like any good adventurer, she also has her backpack with her to carry everything she may find.
A character sheet of Annie the Adventurer, the main character of our game.

Research and Pre-production


We are making use of the following to help design our game:

  1. Accessibility guidelines

  2. Good case studies

  3. Articles

  4. Conference talks and interviews

  5. The feedback developers have received from disabled gamers

  6. Features often asked for by disabled gamers

We will be evaluating the barriers often faced in the genre of our game and plan how we will design around them.


Production


Together the team will design, and produce an experience that will have little to no barriers for those with disabilities. By taking the approach of focusing on accessibility from the very beginning of production we can:

  1. Identify potential barriers when designing and testing the game

  2. Be more in depth with our accessibility features

  3. Cover areas that a lot of games miss out on.


Testing


At various points in development we will be running accessibility test sessions with recruited gamers.


By including gamers with disabilities in our testing process we can identify problems without the need to guess. This will be an opportunity to see what players like, and more importantly, a chance to see how effective and useful our accessibility solutions are for players.


In Conclusion


We will not be able to cover everything during this 16 weeks of production, however with this proof of concept we will be able to refine our solutions, explore more advanced disability cases, and ensure everyone can experience all our games in the future.


We hope to share everything we learn as we go and present the resources we found useful during development.


Until next time, take care.


Conor Bradley

Founder of Soft Leaf Studios



Project funded by

Future Screens NI logo