26

No, @24 I'm saying it'd be one of many and it'd be entirely up to the convention organizers who if any they invite. Same for games as a whole, the big publishers run the show  and in the last year, indie games have gone AAA (We Happy Few and the resulting mess that caused).

I feel audiogames at a convention would go one of several ways

Either they're  acurious novelty drunk conventioneers check out for the hell of it and bitch how there's no grahpics and it's boring, or you'd get the rabid blindies at a convention fanboying it up and annoying the hel out of the rest of the convention, that happens more than you think, or they'd simply get ignored in favor of bigger and better marketed games by bigger publishers who have the money to court the media into covering their games, not some little blindie game that has a tiny booth in a corner.

Thing is, sighted gamers regard blind games with a sort of....not really curiosity, more derisive snarky curiosity, more of the 'How can they play games if they can't see?' mentality really, I can go back through pages and pages from the big industry sites and publications and blind games only get a few mentions if that compared to regular games. I worked at SMS for five years from 2011 to 2016 and I raised accessibility with Namoc/Bandai  at the time, their response was the market is too small to make accessibl games, we need to focus on making games that sell well.

Which says it all really, at least for Namco, they want to turn a profit. I get that.

My other worry with aggressive marketing is it'll reinforce the 'pushy blind guy' stereotype, the militant one who is waving their cane around screaming for everything to be acessible even when it's not possible. That mindset is still very very out there depending on where you are.

I somehow think marketing any audiogame is tricky enough on its own, but thrown in the marketing budgets of giants like EA, Ubisoft, even Valve and then you've basically got no hope unless you build a community by word of mouth....but that only goes so far. That, and on Steam there's dozens if not hundreds of games released every day so your game would get lost in the shuffle. Oh, I hear you say, get the big Youtubers to do a video?

Double edged sword. If they like it, the general public may not. If they don't, and tear it apart nobody will buy it, there's a direct correlation between what a big creator says and sales figures. That, and....once again, there's this cynicism from gamers as a whol towards blind people, and towards the stereotype of the militant blind guy who wants to sue everyone and fly a plane and drive a race car and go to space and won't take no for an answer and sues everyone. That stereotype is still existing because of quite a few factors.

So.....where do I think audiogaming goes?

Downwards. AHC is not your typical audiogame, and I sent the site link to a few sighted gamers who I explained the idea behind AHC to, they were intrigued until they read the site and found the streams, they aren't interested, in, quote 'some blindie game that talks to you'. That, I feel is a huge huge issue that needs sorting out as far as accepting games goes...there's a ton of work that neds to be done on both sides....and I doubt it'll ever get done simply because of the divide between blind gamers and sighted gamers, the blind gamers stereotypically want sighted games to be inclusive and the sighted gamers just want to be left alone to game in peace without blind gamers forcing their accessibility on them.

@Iron: I'll go find the PD glitch video that IIRC shows how you could do it, I know roughly how you did it but it took a ton of trial, error and breaking the physics engine a lot..... Also, Timesplitters is just as good as Perfect Dark too. PS2 over N64 any day

Thumbs up +1

27

@iron: I don't need to write a tutorial on setting up Python with Pyglet/Pygame. There are already tutorials that do that. And, Hint hint, Death Match: Project Alpha and Death Match: A New Beginning were *not* written in BGT. Those two are hardly played any more, which is fine; I don't play them either. But they were good in their day. What does need a tutorial is getting libaudioverse to work under Mac OS X or Linux. Now that is a bitch. Thing is, once you get the basic system stuff set up with pyglet/pygame, it's mostly game-dependent work you need to do to get a working game. And yes, while it is mostly the games that are released too early that makes BGT look bad, it's also the fact that it *doesn't* have multithreading support (which is very, very *bad*), and that it's impossible to add graphics if you want to (another *bad* thing). I get that threads are hard to work with sometimes (mutexes, anyone?) but if we want to come even half a year closer to the sited community then multithreading needs to be there.
And, of course, BGT isn't extensible. So that's another bad mark on it's rep.

"On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament!]: 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out ?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."    — Charles Babbage.

Thumbs up

28

I actually object to the blindy interface thing.
Point is more than ever we need our own interface or at least a way to navigate the interface of anything such that the sighted won't notice.
They have their interface, we have our interface, maybe its a more inclusive interface.
To be honest with the way in some respects mozilla and microsoft have gone, I am getting actually sick of mainstreaming and I was all for it a couple years ago.
The reason we as users have in a lot of cases been even able to get along with the sighted interface is to struggle on the edge, who knows if it will be ok tomorrow.
In the early days we had our interface, they had their interface and both parties worked out ok.
I don't care to be closed minded but I do feel that the requirements for abled and disabled are starting to have major differences in them.
In gaming, they want loads of graphics, loads of power, loads of well everything.
With a large team of 400 or more people, large companies, licencing to boot and if things go wrong they can battle it out in a lot of cases.
Now us, audio, right now, though give it time, maybe we will eventually see, maybe braille and audiogames will be old tech.
Virtual reality maybe who knows.
At the moment though I am happy we have our interface and they have theirs.
NNow I am not sure about the situations of some of the posters here but even with family help I can't nore wish to be available to afford the state of the art gaming machine.
In most cases, to buy a new bit of hardware is a big ask for the general user.
1.  unless he has a job and a lot of us do not, well at least the ones I know do not, we have to save for it.
I am targeting 2-3k for a system locally, maybe there are cheaper who knows.
The point, though is this, to upgrade a machine to the sighted for the most part simply is.
If the graphics card screws up get another.
If you want the latest bit of kit, buy it.
Guess what, we are blind so we can't or at least will find it difficult to do so, not all of us have all that cash I am with family so I have cash to burn but thats not going to last for ever.
To buy a new machine is a huge thing.
At first we had school and maybe like me university of some sort, later, maybe had enough cash for 1-2 units for jobs etc.
The only reasons I have replaced anything is if it broke or became so insecure I had no choice.
Most of our stuff is 32 bit, we could be still ok for the most part on win98 or even xp, thats the level of most of our gear.
We don't even need win7.
I do feel that over the years we have let the sighted some leeway, well I for 1 am sick of doing that.
Fact is we have struggled with their stuff, well now its payback time.
For those that complain about this, maybe we should put it in some prospective.
We do not need graphics.
We have in some cases a lot of trouble with sound enhancements.
Look at some of the software today which is still inaccessible, things like newer versions of skype, control panels for displays, sound, a lot of other things.
I am not sure if its the pc only but even so.
Even if you were able to upgrade your pc, that software we use especially if its a comercial screen reader and some of us still use those from time to time me included means we need to get that upgraded.
And not all of us are fully tech savi.
It took me a while but one thing that I have been doing over the last 3 or so years is chucking out and upgrading as much of the old hardware we all use.
That meant I had to let go of some stuff that was accessible to get their inaccessible replacements all for the reasons of compatability with the sighted world.
With the way toshiba is going I am going to have to give up even more accessibility with stuff I like to get that.
I don't care for what is going on, I think its an insult mozilla even suggests that our screen readers are insecure, so the way that we use them maybe insecure but who's fault is that.
They give us nothing and do it to late and complain.
So what do we do, sit in our corner?
And if that were not bad enough everything accessible seems an afterthought unless you have a smartphone and who knows with that.
The so called things will be better movement is going down real fast, the promises I thought we would get we havn't fully got as such.
As for gaming, I think for now we have got as far as we will ever get.
Look, at it this way.
We don't always use the right licenced sounds, we may from time to time have issues.
We have smaller teams.
If we get sued, the only way is to give the sightlings what they want because we can never win.
I do wander if its worth the big fight anymore.
20 years ago in my pirating days, I'd have thought it was worth it, but not now.
So the fact the sighted may have to use our interfaces well its time for payback.
We are never going to get big, so lets add graphics on to our stuff and see what they think about it.
In a other world it would be good if company x added maybe not an interface per say but a way for all to access things.
For the blind, it means a little more audio, and maybe a few more sounds, not necessary target beeps per say but design changes such that cues exist, a lot of consoles, ie x box now have speech, they should be taking advantage of that.
And its not like it would be to much work.
Its almost like we need a law for everything.
Ie everything needs to be inclusive, surely one could figure that out for themselves.
And while its happening on a smaller scale, it would be nice if it naturally happened, and don't give the small market shit, how are we supposed to become big if we just say we are small all the time.
Also just like those stupid online petitions this is just a talk amongst a few blindy people no one actually cares about.
We all attend conventions so I am not sure how this will help with us attending even more, the normals are aware of us we can be assured for that.
The push for the blind has always been business, ie getting a job.
As I found out though, in most cases its a load of bull, I'd prefur to be told that I am a useless poor and helpless person with no chance of a job than beeing fead false hope, ending up without any job.
20 years ago I was just another blindy person in a blindy life, and while I was helpless I was happy.
Now later on, all that energy wasted trying to find work, and finding none.
And while I have a few contracts nothing is full time or even part time.
I do have a life of sorts but to be honest, I do wander how I will survive later on once my family have gone to the other world.
On the gaming side, a lot of the blind orgs still push card and board games and while nice, the reality is that the device is where a lot of games are played.
Unless you find out yourself no one knows about games for the blind so how will they care about games for the sighted.
Also I have noticed just like at university the local government, blind organisations etc were happy to, push you in the direction for a job.
Now its like we have done our bit, you are on your own unless well unless you are interesting.
I don't say that we don't have rights but rights don't go all the way, only halfway at most.
I am unsure what we can do to advance or if we really should.
We will never have large multiplayer servers loads of players or anything.
And as conditions that make us blind are phased out some easier than others there may not be any new blind people at all.
Mine for example has allready been phased out, at least here in new zealand, there will not be any more like me.
The way things are going, we may not stay blind for much longer or at least there will not be any new blind arriving at least yung people we can hope.
As for the origional question I don't know.
Maybe things will get better,
maybe they won't.
Even if the blind gaming industry basically stagnates right now, we do have entertainment of a sort now.
It would be nice to compete with our sighted pears but its unlikely we will achieve this any time soon.
Maybe I am just to old to fight.

Thumbs up +1

29

@28, the thing is, we can't force the sited to comply with our demands. Suing them will only destroy our reputation -- the NFB has already done an excellent job of that, thank you very much, with there "let's-go-around-and-demand-that-companies-make-everything-fully-accessible-and-if-they-don't-we-sue-the-fuck-out-of-them" mentality. The thing is, last I heard there was only 180 million or so blind people in the world (or maybe it was the US?). Either way, that's only about 2.5 percent of the worlds population. That's not even near a majority. We can't force the sited to do shit because it wouldn't be that hard for them to eliminate us metaphorically by stripping all our rights from us. It wouldn't be that hard for them to physically destroy us -- they outpopulate us by 7411638243901159 to 288230376151711744 (or is it 1447585594511945 to 562949953421312?). Either way, the sited have the majority. We have no choice in the matter. And that mentality of forcing the sited to do what we want is exactly what got us here in the first place -- us forcing our attitudes and ideals onto others. If you do that then your no better than a bully and an arrogant prick, and will most likely get shot.

"On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament!]: 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out ?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."    — Charles Babbage.

Thumbs up

30

@28 tha's a rather defeatist attitude to have.

If you like my posts, thumb them up; if you hate my posts,, thumb them up.

*sits back and watches user karma skyrocket with a huge grin plastered across his face*

Thumbs up

31

OK. So, in my opinion, I think we need to acknowledge two fundamental things:
1. In this little corner of the Internet, our population suffers from lack of numbers with respect to people sharing similar interests. In other words, you may have a small group of people who enjoy FPS, while you have another, bigger group of people who enjoy RPGs. Now, taking the smaller group of people who enjoy FPS may be further divided into smaller groups of people who enjoy a certain type of FPS style. This trend tends to continue in such a way so as to prohibit an agreement in games with innovation being produced. A prime example is Redspot. No offense to Sam Tupy, because indeed, I find myself playing that game from time to time. But this kind of game only attracts certain kinds of people. OK. Whether or not Redspot is to be considered an FPS is somewhat irrelevant. I think I made my point.
2. Our population tends to yield very few talented programmers. I am in no way trying to offend, but it's undeniable that some of our best developers are experienced, or were fortunate enough to learn good programming practices. For the most part, this means that programming was studied in school or as part of a higher education curriculum. And no, I do not consider myself one such great programmer. In that respect, I am afraid that I am in agreement with those who mention BGT as being obsolete. Now, I'm not trying to say that someone couldn't learn programming by just studying it at one's own pace. It can be done. It's just for someone to get good that way is quite rare these days. We have a few examples of people in this community who were able to do just that. Programming is an art, and for someone to claim that making a new game is no less than time consuming and frustrating is quite an ignorant statement to say. In the same mindset, it is my belief that part of the reason for why we get the same type of games, so to speak, is simply a matter of them having been produced before. You give someone a game with a certain style, and most likely, you'll get games similar to those already played, provided this player becomes a potential developer. Unfortunately, some programmers tend to be quite arrogant, and tend to keep all their valuable development secrets to themselves. OK. Maybe that's a bit too harsh. The reason I bring it up is because in some programmer circles, you won't be helped if you don't even know the basics of linear algebra. For the most part, this community happens to be very nice when more experienced developers help out the newbies. I was once there!
Another thing that people should keep in mind is that programmers are programmers. Most of us (yes, I included myself; deal with it) are too proud to admit we need help. You could be the best computer scientist in the world, but have a crappy brain for coming up with innovative game ideas. This is why when people claim they have a great game idea, we should try to listen. Perhaps some potential exists there. And while I'm just writing away as the thoughts come into my head, I might as well put this out there: We need some centralized place where developers can help each other out by writing COMPREHENSIVE articles on audiogame-related development. Sort of like a website like howtogeek, or something like that. I emphasize COMPREHENSIVE because techs tend to make information way too complicated! lol
Example: (assuming this is a beginner programming course) To compile a C program, you should pass the -L and -I options to GCC to specify directories for libraries and included header files.
Yeah. I was confused at first too. A beginner article could introduce the concept of libraries and header files.
I don't know. Maybe that was a bad example. lol
IN summary: We should just help each other, and maybe even start a central development HowTo website exclusively for programming articles. Not a forum, but an actual development portal for potential audio game developers to learn the basics of trig as it relates to sound positioning in 2d and 3d, vectors, etc.

Click here to friend me on Facebook.
Click here to follow me on twitter.
If you want to add me to Skype, my name is lozano.edgar.
Please let me know that your from the AudioGames community if you wish to add me on any of these sites.

Thumbs up +3

32

Well said

If you like my posts, thumb them up; if you hate my posts,, thumb them up.

*sits back and watches user karma skyrocket with a huge grin plastered across his face*

Thumbs up

33

@JaceK
Ok. Maybe, going to a convention with a game, that has only audio, wouldn't work out that well. But there are games, that are trying to cross this bridge. Code 7 for example. And the developers were at the GC last year.
And things have changed in the last year. EA tried, to add at least some accessibility features to one of their games. Microsoft made the Xbox more accessible. And, as much as I don't like Windows 10 and Microsoft's way of forcing it onto their customers, I have to admit, that the OCR is really handy, when it comes to gaming.
You said, you spoke to Namco and Bandai. I agree, that the market would be too small to make games especially designed for us. But that is actually not what I'd wanted.
Let's take Tekken for example. Yes, I know. Beat-Em-Ups are always the easiest argument for blind gamers :-). But I can't come up with a different, non-beat-em-up related title from Namco.
So, how much additional efford would it take, to make this game fully accessible? Since I don't know anything about programming, I really don't know. But I doubt, it would be that much of a difference.
I guess, what I am trying to say is, that we are not completely forgotten out there. Even if the casual gamer might think, we can't play their games, only because we can't see. We wouldn't have to convince them. We would have to convince all the developers.
I think, in the end, it all comes down to how much financial efford it takes, to make a game accessible, and how well the response to that would be.

Thumbs up

34

Right Player and the 'hardore' Madden fans bitched about their game being accessible to blind and disabled players instead of fixing broken features, it seemed EA according to the hardcore Madden 'fans' put more emphasis on acessibility than fixing broken bits of Madden.

Also for Namco/Bandai.....I was invovled with Project CARS 1, which is where my source came from meetings I was privy to. While I can't go into exact specifics publishers do want the biggest return. Maybe if SMS hadn't signed on with Namco/Bandai PCARS 1 would have been accessible.....but.....here's the problem Player, at least for SMS.

With their engine it's not just a case of spoken menus. It's a case of doing a hell of a lot more accesibility, high contrast, closed captioning, subtitles, alternate controls and catering to all disabled, not just one part of it. The issue with the SMS engine was it wouldn't support any of that (well bsdies captioning and subtitles in cutsenes) without a massive massive ground up rewrite. It wasn't financially viable at the time honestly, I won't give out exact amounts, but upwards of  300-400k to rewrite it and the game's budget was 3 million for development, so there's a good chunk of it gone on accessibility before Namco signed on and put more funds in.

Yes, beat em ups are the easiest argument but.....here's an issue.....it does take time and effort to make a game accessible, and that time and effort may well be put toward other features. Plus, a game goes gold a while before release and is thus feature complete. Sure, they could add in accesssibility in a free update, yes, but for adding it in during development....it's a ball and strike call, or, do we put in accessibility and divert team members from say, story or MP or do we focus on those and the bigger market.

Point is, yes stuff like Code 7 exists, but that's the exception not the rule. Gaming is still dominated by the big guys who, frankly, do not give a fuck about disabled people till their market share increases or a law mandates it, and I did hear at SMS circa 2011/2012 that Namco and other big publishers would lobby hard against any laws requiring games to be accessible, but that was 5-6 years ago, I somehow don't think that sentiment has changed a great deal, publishers still lobby for  laws that let them make the most money and they'll argue making games more acessible will hurt sales and drive down profits. Whether that's a valid argument is up for debate but publishers love making money and hate anything that detracts from that (See the Battlefront 2 2017  lootbox controversy for instance, EA lost 3 billion bucks off of that and were last heard lobbying to keep lootboxes unregulated))

So....no blind gamers may not be forgotten but they aren't the target of any huge publishers. I still think AHC will be this quirky blindie game on Steam, and I still think the majority of sighted and blind gamers on steam will be split, the sighted may well downvote it into obovion and the blind gamers will be positive about it, I just have a feeling theAHC steam forum's gonna be a huge huge mess.

That, and....yeah, Namco are Japanese so different culture there as well.

Thumbs up

35

I just want to jump in with a couple of things here.

1. I agree that we will never game on quite the same playing field as the sighted. That's just the way it is. We're going to be better at some things, they're going to be better at some other things. That's just the way it is. Live with it.
2. AHC was not, as far as I know, compiled by a group of professionals. Yes, it's good, and yes, there was a lot of work and research and prep that went into it, but we aren't talking about a fully-fledged studio here. We're talking about a few people who had a dream, took that dream apart and figured out the bits that work as well as the bits that didn't, then spent years finding out how to build it. Guess what? I'm doing precisely the same thing right now with someone who knows how to code in python. AHC deserves all kinds of praise, but it isn't this impossible bar, and some of the hype surrounding it has been, if I may say so without offending anyone, overblown. Not anywhere near as overblown as manamon, mind you. lol
3. This whole thing really comes down to personal preference. Do you want to make a game that caters to the blind, or do you think you need to cater to the sighted in order to gain legitimacy? Personally, I think if a game is strong enough in its own arena, that's justification enough to make it...but that's only me. AHC wants to spread, and that's awesome. If nothing else, it may improve upon the impression given to others outside the community. But not every game has to do that, and not every game considered "good" must do that by definition either. I'm telling you now, my RPG is very likely not going to go graphical. It's going to be an audio game, which is going to limit its market penetration to some extent. But hey, if it gets released and someone sees it and decides they think they can help make it graphical somehow? Then sure, we'll talk. But primarily it's an audio game. That won't mean it's bad or inferior. I don't intend to just give it a lick and a promise and call it done. That would just be a matter of adding one more piece of kindling onto an already chaotic bonfire. No thanks. I have better things to do.

Check out my Manamon text walkthrough at the following link:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/z8ls3rc3f4mkb … n.txt?dl=1

Thumbs up

36

@Jade,
I like it.  the rest of us, lets try to take a step back and breathe a little; I'm sure we're all passionate concerning our feelings on this subject and that's perfectly fine, but a few posts out here concern me owing to the negative conotations and heavy pessimism.  that we can game at all should honestly not be overlooked and taken for granted.  I'm not backing down on my original stance; yes, lets raise the bar, and lets try to do it without bowling each other over in the process.

I do not know what my future holds, but I do know who holds my future.

Thumbs up +1

37

The person that started this thread mention that AHC is a clone.
I would like to know what game is AHC is suppose to be a clone of?
I will say that even if a game is a clone of a video game that is alright with me.
I use to be able to play video games when I had my sight and still wish I could play some those titles as a blind person.
So if someone makes a clone of a video game that I use to play I think it is great because I get that chance to play again.

Thumbs up +1

38

It's a clone in the sense that every turn-based RPG is a clone of Final Fantasy, I guess.

Some of my games
Keep up to date by following @Jeqofire on twitter!
Ear Ninja?

Thumbs up

39

well ian reed is part of outofsight.
Ahc is not exactly a clone but its the final release of the rpg engine beta.
Before there was tactical battle which is still good but if it creates enough units it will simply run out of memmory buffer space and crash.
So its a clone of itself I guess thats what ahc is I guess.
As for the rest.
Ms forcing on us, to be honest that doesn't happen anymore ms even admitted they stuffed up.
But that does bring up an interesting twist.
Win10 and xbox use the new universal app design.
Here is the issue universal implies use for and by everyone.
Not every app is accessible.
It would be nice if they were, you can play your xbox on win10 and vice versa, thats pritty close to an accessible program.
Sadly with ms moving their music store to spotify, and a few other things like killing windows phones as no one wanted to write apps for them, the only reason you would use an ms account is if you have a console, want to read news and weather and use the calendar.
You do not need to sign in with a ms account or use their sucky outlook service for your sucky email.
You can add google and yahoo services to win10 to use their features etc.
What I like is the idea of running your apps on consoles, including emulated desktop apps, and console games on the pc assuming you have a console.
So in theory nvda could run on the xbox as can goldwave, as can probably a lot of extra things.
Thats pritty close to accessibility in the os, the games are another matter.
But we have a platform now and ms seems to be thinking about us at least enough that they seem to be releasing things and a few of them to boot.
Bar skype which I won't go into I think they are doing well.
A sightling that used windows 10 didn't notice the ribbons and other things in windows so visually ms seem to be doing something different.
At least you can seeminglessly switch.
One thing that would be nice is if windows cleared all the recovery partitions unused after or during upgrade or had a tool to clear previous recoveries easily without all the issues of trying to see what is what.

Thumbs up

40

Let's put one ridiculous idea to bed.

AHC is not a clone. It's not even close.

Does it use a similar engine to Tactical Battle? Yes it does. Does that mean it's a clone? Absolutely not. One is a real-time strategy game, the other is a turn-based RPG. Sorry, the argument is busted right there.

If you want a clone, look no further than Manamon, which is a pokemon clone. That is about the purest clone I have ever seen, ever, in my audio-gaming lifetime. Here are some examples of why.
1. In both games, you have a party of up to 6 monsters with one or more types which battle teams of other monsters
2. In both games, you start the game to go on a journey to be the very best, choosing from one of three creatures (in most cases, anyway) to begin your adventure and establishing a semi-friendly rival
3. Funny, but there are woods/forest areas near the beginning of a lot of pokemon games, as well as manamon
4. In select cities, there are gyms/stadiums where you go to face a boss where you get recognition for winning
5. In both, there's an evil organization bent on taking over the world, or...something
6. You use little devices like nets or balls to capture wild creatures, can use items in or out of battle to heal or refresh them, and each creature has a variety of moves of specific types which can be used to affect either themselves, their allies or foes
7. Each city has a building specifically to heal your creatures
8. Creatures can be given items to hold which have properties which may (or in some cases really may not) help in battle)
9. The creatures will level up and learn new moves, and will eventually turn into new versions which have higher stats
10. Said stats are almost identical in both pokemon and manamon
11. The types are a bit different, but fairly close in both ways, right down to interactivity (poison is weak to magig/psychic, earth/ground is weak to water and grass/plant and ice); we're talking name changes and small tweaks in most cases
12. A lot of the functionality of moves is ripped straight out of pokemon. 100-power ground-type attack called Earthquake. 95-power flame type attack called Flamethrower or Torch. A standard/normal move which has 35 base damage and 95 accuracy called Pounce/Tackle. A plant/grass type move which puts the foe to sleep called Sleep Powder/Sleep Spray...plus half a hundred more.

I rest my case. You want a clone, call Manamon a clone.

AHC has turn-based combat, uses mages and rangers and priests and thieves and warriors and necromancers. So it's an RPG using a fair number of typical RPG conventions. This no more makes it a clone of anything - Tactical Battle, Final Fantasy, you name it - than anything else.
Now, if AHC's main character's name was Cronus, and the first thing you had to do was go to the thousand-year fair and meet a crazy inventor chick named Lucile and then save a princess named Marla? Then okay, sure, call it a Crono Trigger clone. Until then, let's limit our commentary to things that actually make sense.

I'm sick and tired of that "clone" word being flung about. Stick it where it's earned.

Check out my Manamon text walkthrough at the following link:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/z8ls3rc3f4mkb … n.txt?dl=1

Thumbs up +1

41

Hey. I'd play a Chrono Trigger audiogame thanks. That game was a classic.

Also FWIW, AHC is, by your description a D&D clone, so that argument's back on tongue

Thumbs up

42

this goes on way in hand with the other topic I had created that discussed pretty much the exact same issue. Which is, audio game market. But only because this one talked about the hippest and latest people were probably more likely to reply to it. Anyway

I feel that,
1. Some of the games that have lready been created did so based on ideas that came very very close to matching those from the regular, sighted raphical type of games from where they got their inspiration. So maybe its not that we cannot just compete or work with sighted people on every type of gaming period, there are some type of games that might be better to adapt than others and that can be 100% done.
To put this example to use. having the rather pesimistic view that we will never be able to this or that... is what is exactly preventing things from avancing, evolving, growing. I am a pro musician, thankfully making a decent living off of it, and 98% of my colleagues are sighted and they all do the exact same thing. If we would put the same gaming analogy translated to this, that would mean I would be a starving, dependant person and so I would do some other thing with my life.
Do I have to do tings differently? sometimes. Are things I simply cannot  do in music? Yes. Just sightreading and watching some graphical representation of a waveform. has that prevented me from earning money with what I do or from others to praise some of the stuff I do? certainly not.
2. A hero's call is new. At least it has things to offer in the audio gaming world and with very nice sound design. But its not the only example. Bk, especially bk3,  being created by a single person (which is the most amazing part) features amazing sound effects, very interesting puzzles to solve, fast-passed action, some interactions with things, exploratory, kind of iddling portions too, lots of unlockables, a lot of replayability because of statistics you could manipulate as you levelled up, and killer music. The story might not be really good but again, just a single person was initially behind all of this. So the bar is definitely raising, quite high.  And if i am not misstaken  it was done in the insidious bgt which my antivirus solutions have never reported as a false alarm by the way. So no its not really time for a new pain job. Its time for making it better and letting it still evolve some more regardless of game style, programming choices or playability.
3. Much of what has been going on is simply a lack of unity and overall, a lot of decentralization of community, information, and resources. The audio gaming sector has many causes for its fragmentation and that will hiner progress too. I am thankful we do even have games specifically for us at all.

Thumbs up +1

43

Yeah, BK3 is still the bar for the average dev, IMO. That I've been aiming for that since 2005 and still can't get there informs my pessimism a bit of a bit.
Balancing optimism vs realism is hard. Low expectations are horrible, and ought to be fought at every opportunity. Nevertheless, I see problems that seem impervious to Great Expectations, effort, patience, etc, etc.
But the fact that we have Bokurano Daibouken and A Hero's Call at all says that these things are not impossible. Even if we are at "roll the dice until you get a 20", someone has to keep rolling the dice.
Roll for Initiative, Biscuits.

Some of my games
Keep up to date by following @Jeqofire on twitter!
Ear Ninja?

Thumbs up +1

44

AHC is wait, a tactical... battle clone? wait wait wait, wait wait.. just... hold up. The dude who wrote tactical battle wrote the engine for AHC, its... his... engine, so its a clone..... oh, lord, please., if there is a deity, or a force of energy, please call me higher, because I can't live among the people of this earth anymore, my destiny is not here, please, please call me up. Let me go explore space or something, get off this god forsaken planet.

If you like my posts, thumb them up; if you hate my posts,, thumb them up.

*sits back and watches user karma skyrocket with a huge grin plastered across his face*

Thumbs up +1

45

JaceK wrote:

Hey. I'd play a Chrono Trigger audiogame thanks. That game was a classic.

Also FWIW, AHC is, by your description a D&D clone, so that argument's back on tongue


D&D borrowed an incredible amount of material from Tolkien, and he from Norse and Celtic mythology. There's a difference between a clone, and utilizing conventional genre specific tropes.

Not all tragedies are Romeo and Juliet, and not all horror movies are Halloween.

So that argument is back off tongue

Sorry, had to.

- Nate

Thumbs up

46

That one's going to take some explaining, isn't it?  AHC being a clone of TB because the same creator; that's like saying Aprone's swamp is a clone of castaways because... I'm sure you get the point.
If you're going to say that AHC is a clone of anything, say it's a clone of entombed because the concept of turnbased combat is there, because the concept of exploration is there, because there's freaking gold in both games, for goodness sake.  Shops?  Check.  Tavern?  Check.  Three party members you can get to go with you on your explorations?  Check.  Looting?  The ability to find gold and items you didn't start off with before?  New spells, skills and increased stats as you leve and gain XP?  Check check check!
and if we keep ripping it apart like this, we can claim that any game that does things like this is a clone of any other.  No no no!  Those of you arguing it from this perspective have missed the topic creator's purpose and point!
I realize the rest of this is going to sound like a verbal spanking of sorts, and perhaps one might infer that I'm ungreatful for this particular title... I'd like to clarify that I'm not.  while I have personal reasons for feeling to some degree the way I do, I'm going to leave those out of the equation and sincerely focus on this discussion as objectively as I can.  I can't promise I'll do it justice, but I promise to try and beg your undivided attention throughout, regardless whether you're a dev or a gamer.
Because James and I have already had this discussion, I feel I am more than qualified to weigh in on this side of the conversation; the question is not, "What makes this game not a clone?" The question is, and I quote, "What makes this game any different to the 50000000 clones out there?"  We can safely assume when we rip apart a game as I have shown above, that any game is a clone of any other because "insert number of random concepts I've already dealt with here."  the question does not even attempt to soften, or make in any way harsh the fact, that this is, in fact a clone.  Of what is arguable, but the fact is that when you step into AHC and, assuming you've played RPG's before, you're stepping into familiar territory.  Perhaps it's been spruced up with more dialogue than the last one you played, and the spells and skills are called something different, and the sounds are different, and the damage types are slightly different, and the numbers are different, but it feels, for the most part, entirely the same!
This is the question!  What makes this game, any game, different from the last one I played that had all of the same concepts in it?  What makes AHC stand out more than Entombed, to use my above example?  is it just the fact that it's not a dungeon crawler?  is it the fact that there were more devs on the project?  is it the keystrokes?  Is it the music?  is it all of the above and nothing else?  Could this game be more?
and once we get done answering that side of the question, let us ask ourselves something else: if we were a part of the majority of gamers playing sighted games on sighted game consoles, would we be perfectly ok with sticking to the concepts, mechanics and overall play remaining almost predictable?  Is Mortal Kombat exactly the same as Tekken?  Do you feel the same when playing both?  does Virtua Fighter feel the same as those two?  If we add Street Fighter and Killer Instinct into the mix, can you honestly say that if you've seen one fighting game you've seen them all?  Are all FPS games the same to you?  Are all RPG's??
Eventually the sighted community ends up wanting more, ends up wanting to raise the bar!  Is it wrong for the blind community, and its developers to want the same?  Having finally paid 20 dollars to see what all the fuss was about, I can honestly say thatI would rather have waited 10 years for AHC to come out and be vastly and uniquely different to what it is now, than having all the hype I ended up with and the anticlimax I felt when realizing that this is something I've played before with more sopistication thrown in!  the marketing was brilliant!  The design is different!  the sounds are different!  the keystrokes are different!  The places, items, names of people and even the way they interact with one another, are all different!  Perhaps I'll find that when I have the time to actually sit down and play through the whole thing that the replayability is even different!  the game, the mechanics, the way you play it and the purpose for which you're working toward, though, it all feels like I've done it before!  That doesn't make it a horrible title, and it's not a purchase I regret making, but if I'm going to stay in the ag market as an audiogamer, I believe I have the right to ask and kindly demand, whether in fact developers should be more concerned with making games that do more, more in the sense that there's more of a game than the last one we had!  Strip out all the complex sound design, take away all the smashing and pounding music, forget all the beautifully done acting scenes and cinematography and, focus!  On a game!  if that's what it takes!
If there's a reason I respect Aprone, it's the fact that he's made us all have to!  Have to think outside of the box!  have to use a mouse to play some of his games!  Back when I first arrived on the seen everyone was absolutely desperate to stick to their keyboards and beged him forever and beyond to change up swamp to fit their needs!  why not!  FPS's can be done this way!  Audioquake, anyone?  Technishock?  Shades of Doom?  All keyboard!  why not!  Aprone said no!  While some may have gone out of their way to mcjigger the game to do some of what they wanted... what do I know, I believe we can all agree you're going to get the best results in Swamp by using a mouse!  All of Aprone's games require you to do something you don't feel ok with doing!  In castaways and Paw Prints, you have to make sacrifices and you're more than likely not going to win the game with all the units you started out with!  It means people are going to die!  IN Swamp, you have to work for everything you acquire; you can't sit around and do nothing if you want to succeed, and dying has consequences!  In Lunimals you can, of course, choose to sandbox yourself in and make the game as easy for yourself as you like, I suppose, but if you're playing the actual campaign you're going to struggle to figure out the proper balances for your domes, and there are variables along the way that'll trick you and trip you up so that it's not always entirely the same, not absolutely predictable!  It's worth mentioning that Lunimals and castaways have practically the same design as far as mechanics go; keystrokes are practically the same and for awhile, so were all of the sounds!  the two are, however, two entirely different games and different experiences!
these are just some titles I bring to your attention to show you that difference can be achieved, that we can have entirely unique experiences when gaming, with every single game!  Aprone didn't concern himself with the best sound design and acting scenes as much as he did with producing titles that would captivate the gamers he was working for, and to this day, years after he intended to quit working on a project that was supposed to be a throwaway, Swamp continues to be talked about and played and desired!  this, audiogamers, is what we should be working for!  Not all games are great works of history, but they can be if we honestly want them to, and if you're going to spend money on making it, invest time and people on it, and expect others to pay for it, you really should try to make it so!

I do not know what my future holds, but I do know who holds my future.

Thumbs up +5

47

You've just described games as a whole Nocturnus. Yes, RPGs are similar. Game stories, regardless of what game, are predictable  and safe. You play the game, it's all familiar mechanics.

Is it wrong to want to raise the bar? No. Is it wrong to want that bar to reach absolutely everyone? Not at all. You can only do so much retraiding the same territory in any genre, and you know going into a genre that there's going to be certain conventions.

That being said, improvement is needed, it's style over substance I feel for games as a whole, I'm much more inclined to play older games that were made for less advanced systems as gameplay generally was the key because there wasn't a ton of free space for graphics and sounds and such. Some of my favorite games are the 8/16 bit console games here and old 80s/90s DOS games really.

Thumbs up

48

@47, well phrased and precisely what I was trying to get at.
If there's any system I had a ton of fun with I'd say Atari systems in generall really hit the spot.  Nes was fun to some degree as well.  My generation and younger thinks it's all retro trash, but I'm no longer impressed with consoles to go shell out thousands of dollars on them, remotes and online subscriptions just to game.  I guess I'm getting old.
Still, I can't shake the feeling that if we stopped demanding so much in the way of sound design and started putting more thought into the actual games themselves we could have more titles that would be worth buying and make audiogames more than just something blind people play.

I do not know what my future holds, but I do know who holds my future.

Thumbs up

49

I do think though that audiogames are inherently limited though....I don't care about HRTF or binural audio or 3D audio positioning, I care about gameplay. Just as I don't care for photorealism or 4K resolutions or textures either.

I'd rather have a simple looking game that plays great, than one that's all flashy graphics and barely any gameplay. I can point to the interactive movies as the logical extent of that point.

IMO I'd much rather tell any developer don't focus on the flashy shit. Give me addictive and fun gameplay, give me something that I want to play. Yes....yes, audiogames right now are decent but if you strip away the flashy effects, what are you really left with? I do think people are at fault for getting hung up on buzzwords like hrtf and binural audio, instead of demanding gameplay over everything else.

Also....yeah, the 8 bit era IMO  was the example of gameplay first. Castlevania, Earthbound (Alright that was 16 bit),I'll even throw in platformers on the NES as well really, I'm not a huge fan of advancing hardware for consoles. I mean, I still have a C64 emulator on my laptop to play those games. I mean there's still a guy working on his C64 game 30+ years later, it looks simple as hell but it's still very very playable.. Same for NES, I'd rather have a 2018 Tecmo Bowl mod over Madden, Tecmo feels and plays a lot better IMO and isn't as hard to learn.

Plus, older games were simpler and easier to pick up and playy simply due to how limited the hardware was. NES? Two buttons, d-pad, plug into the TV and put the cartridge in. Same for the SNES, just more buttons, Genessis, same deal, Even N64, same deal.....yet with modern consoles it's all online this, online thatt....

Point is: Give me a game that's fun to play and  doesn't have a million flashy effects that beats its chest bragging about binural this, 3D audio that....and it has barely any gameplay to speak of.....

Thumbs up +3

50

thank you, thank you thank you thank you!  with post 49 I think we can just about wrap this baby up!  :d

I do not know what my future holds, but I do know who holds my future.

Thumbs up