Forza Horizon 5 Will Have On-Screen Sign Language Interpreter As Well As a Full Set of Accessibility Features

Xbox continues to lead the way in accessibility with the inclusion of an on screen sign language interpreter in Forza Horizon 5.

In an Xbox Wire blog post, Mike Brown, Creative Director of Forza Horizon 5 at Playground Games highlights the accessibility features that will be included in the new games, and sign language is on feature of many.

Below from Xbox Wire details all accessibility features:

  • A Game Speed Modification setting that allows gamers to play Forza Horizon 5 at a reduced speed when playing offline; this feature is great for newcomers and those who would like more time to progress through the game.
  • High Contrast mode that changes colors to make things such as menus and text easier to distinguish for gamers.
  • Color Blindness mode that allows players with color blindness to better visualize game elements. Players can adjust color blind settings independently for the UI and the game visuals.  
  • For Subtitles, we know the importance of customization. With these, you’ll be able to:
    • Turn subtitles on or off
    • Adjust the font size
    • Adjust the background opacity
    • Ability to highlight key words
  • Customize menu and gameplay font size.
  • Screen reader narrator that reads text, buttons, and other elements aloud.
  • Text-to-speech and speech-to-text options for players that want to participate in Voice Chat and either need to send synthesized voice or receive voice chat as synthesized text.
  • Ability to disable moving backgrounds.
  • Notification duration setting, which allows players to set how long notifications in the game appear.

See, I’m not always bitter and snarky. There are things that I care about and accessibility for all people to enjoy gaming is one of them. As always, I hope the industry in general follows Microsoft’s lead in this area.

[Source: Xbox Wire]

This 1-Armed Gamer Will Destroy You in Overwatch

Aaron Soetaert is just like many other guys. He’s a gamer, father, and enjoys uploading videos to Youtube. Unlike other guys, he’s also an Air Force veteran and served in Iraq, and survived a car crash caused by a drunk driver. That accident took his arm, and nearly his life.

None of this keeps Soetaert down though. Just perusing his Youtube page, you can see that Soetaert is a super positive guy and incredibly active.  There are “able-bodied” people out there that can’t, or simply won’t do what Soetaert does. He also rips people up in Overwatch, a game that I struggle playing with two hands.

I’m hesitant to call Aaron an inspiration, because that word gets tossed around so haphazardly, and I don’t want to sound cliché, but I struggle to find another word to describe him.

With the Latest Update, the Xbox One Becomes More Accessible

The Xbox One is getting a software update soon, and along with all the standard UI tweaks is coming a feature that will help disabled gamers.

Microsoft calls the new feature Copilot and it essentially allows two Xbox One controllers to act as one unit. According to the official Xbox blog,

This will help make Xbox One more inviting to new gamers needing assistance, more fun by adding cooperative controls for any game and easier for players who need unique configurations to play — whether that is with hands apart, hand and chin, hand and foot, etc…

Anything that gets more people gaming is a good thing.

[Source: Microsoft]