Carnival of Souls - (15)


AbleGamers and Ouch! - Spruce Up

Stencilled Banksy image of a cleaner pulling up the wall as if it was a curtain, and dusting away.AbleGamers and the BBC's Ouch! have both received a big makeover just recently. I particularly like AbleGamers new logo, and also the new web-accessibility features at Ouch. Unfortunately with the Ouch spruce up - the Ouch Guide to Switch Gaming has gone. Perhaps I can pursuade them to reinstate it. Either way - both are well worth some of your time.

Pachinko Graveyard

Ruined Pachinko Arcade in Japan. With Halloween fast approaching - here's a rough-as-you-like top five one-switch assisted spooky activities...

1. Resident Evil - One Switch to shoot - with a helper taking care of the rest.
2. Zoltar - Fortune Telling.
3. The Boat Man - disturbing game where you send souls to heaven or hell.
4. Eat!?
5. Remote Control Crawling Hand.



My all time favourite game, Shenmue. Fantastic escapism (and even features an addictive one-switch Darts game). One day more games will be made on this scale - and one day - they'll be made more accessible too.

The Other Man On The Podium

Touching story - via: BBC News Magazine.

Maze Muncher - one-switch or mouse controlled

Graeme's Free Games presently features some highly accessible versions of Namco's all-time classic Pac-Man. All feature the option to reduce the number of ghosts as well as giving the facility to adjust the speed of the ghosts and your Pac-Man independently.

There's a really well thought out one-switch version that features the best solution I've seen yet to navigating a maze at speed. A mouse compatible version offers a way to play for head-tracker, eye-tracker and other users too. This too offers a really well thought out solution.

For those wanting to play the exact same version that Namco released in the arcades back in 1980/81 - take a look at 4Noah for a potential solution: One-Switch Pac-Man - Mouse controlled Pac-Man.

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Switch Accessible Bowling

Image of a switch accessible bowling machine. 10-pin Bowling has long been a game people have sought to make more accessible, since the advent of gutter-bumpers and ramps. In 1997-1999 I developed a couple of "Switch Accessible Bowling Ball Kickers". These consisted of the workings of a battery powered golf putting aid housed within a wooden box that postitioned any bowling ball close to the point of balance linked up to a switch socket.

Aiming required a helper who would slowly move the angle of the bowling ramp from left to right continuously, stopping the moment the player hits their switch.

I always wanted to develop this idea further to reach more people, but I've never got around to it. If anyone is interested in building their own (cost me around £15 to do) please get in touch. Since that time I've discovered some great alternatives:

IKAN Bowler, POSS-I-BALL 2000, Pin-Seeker, the Empowering Wheelchair Users! Blog and some great videos over at RNT including this slightly terrifying one!

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SwitchedOn Games

Switched On Games"The SwitchedOn Games manifesto:
  1. Develop games that are graphically and technically of a standard on a par with current commercial releases, but that are designed to be controled by people who, through physical disability and/or learning dificulties, find current mainstream games inaccessible.
  2. To work with like-minded groups, organizations, charities and individuals who care about similar issues, and who can help contribute to funding, fundraising, development, testing etc.
  3. To emphasise GAMES ! We're not ignoring the need for educational software but our focus is on recreation - the social importance of having fun !
  4. To help develop methods of input - in both hardware and software - to allow anyone of any age or ability to enjoy our games. "

"Never underestimate the importance of having fun." - RANDY PAUSCH (1960-2008)

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Let's Tap - Nintendo Wii One-Switch Game

Fireworks display on the one-tap / one-switch accessible Let's Tap game. Let's Tap is a compilation of games and sensory activities made accessible on the Nintendo Wii by just tapping a box that a Wii-remote sits on. Some of the games are quite high-paced to look at, but the "visualizer" effects which include fire-work displays, art and a fish pond look potentially accessible to just about everyone.

Can't wait to get hold of this game to see if a switch can be connected somehow via a simple hacked Wii-remote. Might be that it will work sitting next to any kind of switch that makes a clicking noise when you press it anyway. We'll see.

Meanwhile - a couple of YouTube videos here and here and photos at IGN.


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Luminsonic - image of concentric black and white blurred circles in the background with red and orange paint splats in the midground and a Wii-remote controller in the foreground. After catching more on Lumisonic, an audio-spectrum-analyser aimed at deaf people, whilst watching a bit of See Hear I decided to post a link. It's a system that is intended to be a more meaningful way for deaf people to experiment with sounds that they can make themselves.

It runs on a Mac or Windows computers using a microphone, and can even be hooked up to a Wii remote with blue-tooth connection. When the user vocalises, concentric circles appear on-screen, closely related to the sounds expanding and contracting.

Looks like a very fun sensory activity for anyone. Free download available via the Sonic Arts Network with links to BBC Videos too.

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Star Trigon - 2008

Namco's 2002, 2008 Star Trigon - one-switch game. Namco have brought one of my all time favourite one-switch games to the iPod. Sadly - not my iPod (too old) but good to see this fun game get a wider release. Well worth a punt for £3.99 if you have an iPod that fits the bill. One day this will see it's way onto a PC or a games console for proper one-switch accessibility.

Via: iLounge


"I'm Spazticus"

Part1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4. Probably 12+ rating...

Switch Accessible MP3 Players

Image of a mini-hifi MP3 player with three accessibility switches. Inclusive are presently knocking out a nice little switch accessible MP3 player. For alternatives take a look at RJ Cooper's "MP3 Player-Drive" (looks a little delicate though I have to say) and his chunky iPod remote. Another option would be Technical Solutions "iScan-MP3" iPod interface.

Fancy a D.I.Y. method - well of course it would be easy to get a switch interface operating the likes of iTunes or the free Single Switch Media Player to play MP3 songs and CDs. What about hacking a JoyPad to play tunes on a PS3 or Xbox 360? You could go the whole hog and build a C-SID if you're feeling brave.




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