2019-01-14 03:14:25

As reported by [gamasutra]:

The [Video Accessibility Act] of 2010 signed by Barack Obama requires that communication functionality like in-game chat and the UI used to navigate to those elements must be accessible for people with visual, motor, speech, cognitive, or sensory difficulties, with these rules applying to companies who do business in the US. The gaming industry has had several waiver extentions for compliance against these stanards since it was signed into law, to better negotiation and determine implementation of these rules with [ESA members]. The final waiver has now expired. Now any game released after December 31 2018 is required to be CVAA compliant if they include communications features covered in the CVAA, as far as is achievable within reasonable effort and expense, or otherwise unduly burdensome at that point of the development cycle to implement.

For some examples on companies that have already met compliance, there's [Verizons] text to speech set top boxes, which has enabled subtitles on all broadcast content for streaming services like Netflix and Hulu. Games including Halo Wars 2, Forza Horizon 4, and Battlefield 5, along with a [number] [of] [developers] getting involved, and the development of both Xbox and PS4 Text to Speech, with the release of Xbox's API for UI, and transcription API for two way conversion between voice and text chat last year.

If you find that a product or company does not meet those standards for accessing communications, you can either get in touch with the company directly through the phone number they have registered with the FCC, or contact the FCC directly. When contacting the FCC you'll be required to send over details of the issue and how it could be fixed; the FCC can then act as mediators and open a line of dialogue between you and the company. The company will then be gien a 30 day window to resolve your issue, if it isn't resolved after 30 days you can either extend the window to give them more time, if for example they've agreed a solution but won't be released until the next scheduled patch in three months time, or escalate it to a full complaint, though a full complaint consists of a full six month investigation. Fines for non-compliance start at 100,000$ for each violation, or for each day of an ongoing violation, going as high as 1 million. Its worth noting that to date, no dispute has escalated towards fines.

For further information on what you can do if your concerned about the accessibility of an advanced communications product or service (in the US), check [here]. If your also interested in hearing more about what the CVAA is all about, you can check out [this] IGDA presentation video, or [this] pda.

NOTE: That these regulations only apply to communications functionality (text chat, voice chat, video chat), and any menu's or information needed to navigate to and use those functions. You can't raise any issues about anything that isn't related to such communications.

-BrushTone v1.3.3: Accessible Paint Tool
-AudiMesh3D v1.0.0: Accessible 3D Model Viewer

Thumbs up +2

2019-01-14 08:51:38

Hi.
What's the point of creating an other topic about this?

Best regards SLJ.
If you like the post, then please give it a thumps up.
Feel free to contact me privately if you have something in mind. If you do so, then please send me a mail instead of using the private message on the forum, since I don't check those very often.
Happy gaming... :D

2019-01-14 11:19:15

For information purposes, mostly. As well as a point to discuss the topic further, should anyone care to do so.

-BrushTone v1.3.3: Accessible Paint Tool
-AudiMesh3D v1.0.0: Accessible 3D Model Viewer

Thumbs up

2019-01-14 12:31:13

But, people could do that in the other topic. smile Well, never mind.

Best regards SLJ.
If you like the post, then please give it a thumps up.
Feel free to contact me privately if you have something in mind. If you do so, then please send me a mail instead of using the private message on the forum, since I don't check those very often.
Happy gaming... :D

2019-01-14 14:11:26

O thought this only covered chatting, but I'd be happy with an accessible menu interface.

Thumbs up

2019-01-15 03:38:13

KenshiraTheTrinity wrote:

O thought this only covered chatting, but I'd be happy with an accessible menu interface.

It does only cover chat functonality, but for the chat to be accessible you have to be able to navigate to and operate it.

Thumbs up

2019-01-23 18:19:13

Explainer post, it's a long read but hopefully should clear up misconceptions:

http://www.gamasutra.com/blogs/IanHamil … g_CVAA.php

Thumbs up

2019-01-23 21:38:02

Just curious, but do audio games meat all of these requirements and if not, how could we do it? I'll re-post the requirements you wrote in the blog post, with my questions and possible solutions:
I know that AGs satisfy requirements (1)(i), (1)(iii), (2)(i), (2)(ii), (2)(iii) (I think), (2)(iv), and (2)(vi), but I don't know if they satisfy (1)(ii), (1)(iv), (1)(v), (1)(vi), (1)(vii), (1)(ix), and (1)(x). At least, I don't think all games in the AG market do, anyway. MUDs most likely do, but do those qualify as "games"?
Some possible solutions:
(1)(iv): speech recognition (through, say, wit.ai/google cloud speech) for menu navigation and related functions. Controller vibration for incoming text messages and speech recognition indicators, i.e.: vibration strength could vary depending on whether the speech recognition engine failed in recognizing your voice, succeeded, etc. So far I have found audio games with controller support but none with haptics. Perhaps this could somehow apply to the others, too? These were just thoughts I came up with on the fly, so I haven't really thought up really good ways of doing all of this, but there are APIs for SR and ASR.

"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

2019-03-20 12:16:39 (edited by hadi.gsf 2019-03-20 12:18:23)

I've got a question.
If CVAA requires video games to have text and voice communications accessible, why games like the division and crackdown 3 and  now partially mortal kombat 11 have accessibility for their game menus?
Main menus and ui elements are not the same as  text/voice/video chat and communications are they?
I'm trying to figure out whether it's the regulation  that's making them to implement  menu accessibilities or they're just encouraged by it

John Petrucci Fan all the time.
twitter: @hadirezae3
skype ID: hadi.gsf7

Thumbs up

2019-03-20 12:33:27

The pessimist in me says they're seeing the big picture and moving in that direction before some other law which doesn't exist yet makes them. But I do kind of hope they want to do it as well, and I think some people definitely do, like the guy who made Way of the Passive Fist, for instance.

Ironcross is here to expose the fakes and phonies,
Suss out the wheat from the chaff, the cheddar from the bologna,
I'm a superhero, y'all fools needa know this,
So if you on the other side of right, prepare for a fight no one will ever miss.

Thumbs up

2019-03-21 08:09:35

I think the big visibility MS has put on the accessible controller and the integration of Narrator in the Xbox helped, because I guess it is fairly easy to integrate it. Before narrator was on Xbox, a game that would want voiced menus would have to either voice dub them which only works for static menus or embed a speech synthesizer in their game which is hard to find, can be expensive, takes up a lot of precious memory, would impact the entire audience only to help a small fraction, etc etc.

I also think that the regulation might have shown the companies how easy it is. When you don't know how to do something, it's always more risky. But then, if they did it for another game with chat, they know how easy it is. The other thing is if a studio reuses code for menus and they implemented accessibility in one game, it just followed along. This is plausible as menu core can be part of the engine which is reused between games.

Finally, I don't know if it's just me, but in Canada and the US, there is kind of a hype around accessibility right now. I see a lot of it in the news lately. When I was at MS, there was huge advertising on the accessibility summit and the accessible controller.

Anyone knows the state of accessibility made for Playstation games? I guess if they have a chat, it needs to be accessible too and they don't have narrator in there.

Reading is one form of escape. Running for your life is another. ― Lemony Snicket

Thumbs up

2019-03-21 08:48:29

I believe that chat functionality and most of the system user interface has text to speech. What's actually missing it are some of the menus within menus. They done a pretty decent job at laying a foundation, they just actually need to sit down with what's there and finish working on it. I know a lot of people like to rag on how bad text to speech is on ps4when compared to the xbox one, but no one, and I do mean no one talks about what you can actually do. For example, I found that if a section like notifications or trophies doesn't have text to speech, then if I just append it to the quick menu then it will work. Strange bug. Also, the other day I bought a digital game on my phone, hopped onto my ps4's library and got the game downloaded and running without sighted assistance. Not being into online gaming myself, that's all I really care about, but I am beginning to feel like maybe the accessibility gap between the two consoles isn't as wide as many make it out to be, at least here in the states. Still, there's definitely work to be done here.

Thumbs up

2019-03-21 17:55:12

I wonder why MK11 and really a lot of companies are goingfor the voiced menu option?
It will lead to problems when attempting to make non-static menus accessible. As I stated in a previous topic, I think this was done because both consoles don't have a way to interface with TTS.

Skullgirls has it but only for PC now.

Thumbs up

2019-03-29 02:08:38

@13 it's only MK11, not alot of companies. I haven't heard of any others at least.

I don't know if this was the case with MK11 but there's a common misconception that voiced is superior to synthesised, as for people who can see that's true. People who can see can sometimes find it quite a leap to think of audio in terms of being an efficient navigational tool.

Thumbs up

2019-03-29 02:11:51

@9 @10 all the developers I know who are going above and beyond compliance requirements are doing so because they want to rather than because they feel forced to. That was the consensus from the lawyers at the GDC legal round table too, that it was proving to be a driver for innovation.

Thumbs up

2019-03-29 04:27:09

I've tried to email Sony San Diego in regard to MLB The Show 19 accessibility features. They have yet to respond, but nobody knows if they implemented any CVAA features. The only way to find out is to purchase it.

Thumbs up

2019-03-29 04:32:11

@14 Madden 19 does it too. MK11 has a better implementation though.

Thumbs up

2019-03-29 07:17:29

@17 ah I thought Madden's was synthesised

Thumbs up

2019-03-29 08:45:38

@18 Nah, unfortunately not. Johnathan Coachman reads the front main menu. Franchise, exhibition, accessibility, that's it. No options, no submenus, etc. Mortal Kombat 11 at least had the decency to read the submenus to get to story, local fight modes such as towers of time, classic towers, etc. Basically, the only things it doesn't read are menus that I'd only expect to be read via TTS, the dynamic ones. However, an easy solution to this, if TTS is unavailable to the developer, is to add rumble feedback for toggleable states. For example Brice could read surround sound, and hitting left or right on the DPad can make a different rumble as to its current state.

That's one way to solve those options but there's still sliders and such to contend with that would be easy to make accessible with TTS. They probably want to record the least amount possible when recording this menu stuff.

Thumbs up

2019-03-29 12:02:17

The way soul calibur 3 demonstrated surround sound was to have menu chirps play twice successively in such a way that the sound would make it's way around the player, and that was way back on the ps2, but something like that could still work today.

Thumbs up