As a class project, we are developing a 2D, Topdown Stealth adventure game. I thought this might be interesting to try to think about the best ways of making it accessible for the blind community. I really can't think of much, though. So, does anyone else have any ideas?
After playing a bit of the demo... Well, this wouldn't be too bad, I suppose. By the way, What Python Library would you recommend for getting the audio positioning. I've been using Openal, but I don't know if there's anything better. Also, I'm still trying to figure out how to handle things like line of sight of guards.
Libaudioverse, maybe? It's specifically designed to improve on problems that Camlorn found in OpenAL when he made the camlorn_audio wrapper.
When you say line of sight of guards, what specifically are you trying to do? Is this just to determine whether or not they can see the player? I suppose you'd need to define how wide an arc they'd be viewing, find the line segment from the guard to the player, and if that line is within the arc and doesn't pass through obstructions, the guard can see the player. If it's tile-based, you might be able to handwave away the arc and use a rectangle instead, which would make calculations much easier. (Unless you're using a friendly geometry library, in which case, arcs are your friends.)
I don't remember how picky Temporal is about it. Armed guards in Temporal only shoot along the cardinal directions, but I think guards are assumed to see or hear you if you're in the same room. But Temporal is less about stealth and more about using time travel to solve all of your problems, so it mightn't be the best example. It was just the only one I could come up with OTTOMH.
I think BK3's cameras and security carts work on the rectangular model. IDK if the vertical size of their line of sight is 1 tile, or 2-3. It helps that they can only face left or right. If you need arbitrary angles, you'll need arcs and such.
I'm not much of a coder, but I can give you things from the user side of things. First off, it will be necessary to know how much noise you're making as you walk around. This should be relatively obvious, if the game supports controllers for instance, the further you push the stick forward, the faster you walk, to move slowly, press it less, and your steps will be quieter. You could also add surfaces like metal which will clang loudly. More importantly is how much you're visible due to light. Are you out in the open, or hidden in the shadows. Some sort of system will need to be implemented that gives you a reasonable estimate of how lit up you are, and if a guard looks your way and you're lit up, he spots you, if you're cloaked in shadow, he might not, depending. A tile browser as already stated too, so you can sort of map out the way in front of you. Make the thing have a limited range, not clip through walls, but able to go through doors to limited extend if the player can see, that might be hard I don't know there. The trick would be determining how far the player can see in side that door from their current vantage, then allowing the tile browser or camera to only go that far. It shouldn't take you into some sort of map screen or anything, at least I don't think so, but pan and grow louder the closer it is to you, and quieter the further it is. You would also have different audio cues to determine how lit up that area is, and maybe a tile indicator. Maybe you could put some sort of convolution effect on the tile sound, and the more convoluted it sounds, the more hidden you would be if you went their, the more open and clean it sounded, the more exposed you would be if you went there. As far as guards go, we could listen to the patterns of their patrols, get the timing in our minds and make our move to sneak past.
I really do hope you manage to pull this off, I think it would be awesome, and I've never played an audiogame with stealth elements, but I have played mainstream games with my limited vision, I could play Splinter Cell, Metal Gear Solid, Syphon Filter and the like.
I was assuming that it being top-down meant it's 3rd person, Packman-style, such that a sighted person could see things which the character could not, in which case there'd be no need to restrict a tile cursor. If it's meant to be more 1st person with a fixed angle, sure, restrict it accordingly.
Yeah you have a point there, but how can that be challenging then. One thing they could be doing is using like a fog of war, so that even if your field of view was covering this area, you couldn't see into it unless you open the door. What's that game called, there's a top down zombie survival game that I can't for the life of me think of its name, but it is pretty popular, they do that, stuff's blacked out until you get close enough, or open doors, etc. You also do not see zombies if your char is facing away from them, as in they literally don't show up visually even though they're behind you. You can hear them though, and there is some kind of alert thing if they get too close I Think it might make them visible, but if you hear stuff, you have to look around, so even though its top down, its challenging due to those elements.
I don't know how you'd do a stealth game if you can see everywhere within a certain radius of your character even through doors and walls and stuff, they almost have to be using a method such as this, or what would the point be, you'd see a guard and like just not go there, or move past him while his back is turned. Now that I think about it, its an interesting concept, are there other top-down stealth games out there?