Remastered Games & Accessibility Settings. - Elle May

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Monday, 17 December 2018

Remastered Games & Accessibility Settings.


We have got to the stage where more and more games are being remastered and the demand for them is growing, I've touched on the subject before on why I think that not all older games need to be remastered and I still stand by that statement even though I have played remastered versions of games these past few years but they have always been games that were worth remastering. As of late the classics such as Crash Bandicoot and Spyro have grown with popularity and the demand to remaster them was very successful, me and my partner are big fans of the games so it made sense to get them for PS4 in order to play them because nostalgia is a wonderful thing and I welcome it in all aspects of my life and seeing as the '90s have made such a big impact I feel like I've taken a step back in time this past year.

The thing about remasters is that players are very specific in wanting to keep games as close to the original as possible which is great because they get to relive memories of something they spent hours playing before but the biggest issue with this older games aren't accessible and not everyone is welcoming to the idea of making remastered games accessible as this will change the game slightly. For those of us who want to play remastered games but can't due to lack of accessibility, it's unfair and wrong for abled people to dismiss implementing these settings, especially because subtitles are such a basic thing to add in a game.


A few weeks back, the topic of subtitles not being included in Spyro Reignited came up and I saw a lot of hate directed to those speaking out about why subtitles in games are so important, it always comes back to the same saying that people should get good or even just deal with it. Subtitles are essential for a number of people, not just those who are deaf or have hearing impairments, sometimes people also feel they can follow a game better with them on, I usually use them due to my hearing as it's not the best. Having subtitles is one of the easiest ways to make a game accessible, given it's only a small bit of accessibility included but it's something that should be included in every single game in this day and age.

Given the uproar over Crash Bandicoot not having subtitles you would think that they would be included in Spyro Reignited but unfortunately that wasn't the case, wouldn't you want others to experience their childhood again even if that meant including subtitles? I feel like not enough thought was gone into accessibility settings as they concentrated on making the games as close to the originals as they could so accessibility settings weren't really something they would think to include which is disappointing, in fact, my friend Ben did an article about Activision's response to not adding subtitles which you can read HERE.

There is a little bit of confusion over the subtitles in Sypro Reignited that I have been asked about, someone I know didn't understand why people were asking for subtitles when the game includes them which is true to some extent, however, the cutscenes have no subtitles whatsoever which made it hard for a number of people to follow the story and know what was going on, what's the point in having subtitles for other bits of the game yet not include it for the cut scenes? It's an industry standard to have subtitles even if Activision tried to state that it wasn't, Ian Hamilton who is an Accessibility specialist explains why it's an industry standard in this tweet below.

I get that change is hard to get used to but it can also be a good thing, it opens up the world of gaming for so many more people and ALL gamers should welcome accessibility settings, as I always say if you don't need these settings that's fine but those gamers who do need them should be able to have them to play like any other abled bodied gamer without being told that they should just learn to get better at a game. Making a game easier for others to play isn't cheating, accessibility is a right, not a privilege and privilege is a word I have seen used many times to those who want gaming to be more accessible and it's not acceptable to make people feel bad for wanting to enjoy gaming just like every other able-bodied person.

Elle May

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