i've seen some games for the blind using this unity. i know it's mostly designed for game development, and i was curious to know what's it's accessibility level and i decided to ask your opinion about it.
i know it uses C#, and i've seen the unity hub, since i've installed through VS.
It's inaccessible to blind developers unless something seriously changed.
someone told me you had to pay to make it accessible.
wait what? that's even more than stupid and discriminating. like what the hell? pay for a product to be acce3ssible. and what's even worse is that you have no guarantee that's gonna happen. so well, thanks for your advice people.
Even if you can buy accessibility, I highly, highly doubt that you can buy accessibility of the devtools which render their UIs as graphics instead of controls and that still doesn't solve the world editors which are drag and drop.
Even if by some miracle you got this working, it's not worth it, because half of what Unity is is fundamentally incompatible with blind programmer workflows. You're not able to drag and drop, or draw things, or anything like that.
The kit costed somewhere in the ballpark of 65 us dollars last I checked.
What you are thinking of is the gui ui plugin. It does not make Unity accessible. It makes accessibility easier to implement in games make with unity.
Unity is not accessible. It has no likelihood of magically becoming accessible any time soon. Apart from having infinite fonds to pay the developers for the time it would take to make it accessible, There is no amount of money that you can pay to get an accessible version of unity.
Hello. I would first like to offer a public apology. I had begun experimentation on unity, and found some promising leads. Unfortunately, due to unrelated circumstances, I had been unable to complete my work due to development of depression. I realize this is no real excuse, but it is why I haven't progressed my work further. That being said, if you would like to use unity in a semi-accessible manner, there is a template project that would allow for minimal interaction with the editor itself:
https://github.com/frastlin/Screenreade … tyTemplate
Other than that, I was examining that project to determine how I could improve upon the accessibility that the template already provides. I learned that I might be able to use the gui plugin mentioned in this thread, but people should not have to pay what there able bodied peers can access for free.
I would like to thank frastlin for the template. I hope I can finish my work and publish my findings for everyone to enjoy.
I also wrote a small accessibility editor extension. Please check it out and use whatever code in there.
that is utterly ridiculous. Why should we have to pay for accessibility, I am absolutely disgusted!
-Rory Michie, 2020
You guys are mistaken. You don't pay for Unity accessibility. You pay for the thing that many games like Feer, Code 7, etc are using, to make accessible controls. It's not fun that its a paid thing, but people have to earn their money too.
At the moment, you cannot pay for unity accessibility. I think I have a way where you could. I do not want to use that option, because 10 is correct. You shouldn't have to pay for accessibility.
Okay, but guys, in all seriousness, who cares?
Say you get Unity being accessible. All the things that Unity does that are so great--the level editors for example--can't be made accessible no matter how hard you try. What's the point of this? It doesn't gain us anything if their IDE becomes accessible because it's just a C# IDE for us. It's not going to be even close to the next BGT and Python or even C# via anything else is going to be better.
@13 I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss it. Yes, there's a learning curve, and yes it requires working in a way that we're not used to. But game engines let you engage with game development on a much higher level than can be done by stitching together several dozen packages and hoping that the whole works. I can quickly bring up a UI, add support for multiplayer networking, and push the result out to several platforms without much modification.
It isn't Unity, but I've been working on making the Godot engine accessible. Unfortunately the README's instructions won't fully work right now. You'd need to build godot-tts manually because I tried migrating to GitLab CI's native Windows build servers and the build failed. Worked fine on my GCloud-based Windows server, but that's a pain to maintain and I'd rather not. If anyone knows why this build might be failing, the build script and such are in the previously-linked repo.
But in any case, I've built most of an Asteroids-like shooter in Godot, and am adding the last bits of polish for an early release. That was fairly easy since it's open space. Next I'm working on procedurally-generated tilemaps, and am thinking of ways to make the map/level editor accessible. Again, it isn't Unity, but similar enough. This also paves the way for blind and sighted game developers to collaborate. Imagine if Flying Squirrel could actually *work* with blind developers to build a better combat system, instead of occasionally kicking out a demo, getting feedback, and slowly iterating on that. I'd love to see that happen, and the only way it will is for us to have *some* level of access to these tools, even if it isn't full map/level editing. And Godot has a smaller developer community than Unity, but it is open source, and reading the code has been essential when implementing touchscreen accessibility and other advanced functionality.
Though there might be something to be said for collaborating with sighted developers, I would maintain that just writing an engine aimed at blind game developers gets you the rest of this in a much more convenient package, and that the reason this is a problem is social: those of us with the skill to do that have too many constraints on our time, because it's basically impossible to both have that level of skill and not be an adult professional who doesn't have the time. My personal theory as to the low level of quality of audiogames is simply that those who could do better discover that there's no money in it but there is money in programming professionally, and then go program professionally instead.
I've started to move toward blind audiogame unity (sort of--most of the plans are in my head, and it's much less GUI-centric), the first step of which is Synthizer, but there's no real ETA on that.
The other problem is that for i.e. something like Swamp, the levels of freedom sighted game developers have are too many degrees of freedom to make an easily comprehensible interface on, so trying to get one of the sighted engines to work in the sake of collaborations also limits the genres you can collaborate on to 2D things. Try playing Audioquake and you'll see what I mean very quickly.
But perhaps you and others will eventually prove me wrong on Unity/etc, and there's some good ergonomic way to do this that reaches some level of efficiency at scale.
13, if Unity were to become accessible, you know wwhat that would mean? The audiogame/accessible gaming market will have a boom of sorts. Think about the huge number of accessible games that could come from accessible unity, or the thing that 14 is working on. To established developers like you these sorts of things are the lazy fat man way out, but to a teenager who has loads of time, an active imagination, and a drive to try and create, these kinds of things are a kind of life saver of sorts. Holding us off until we learn a proper programming language like Python, Java or C. I think its a simular story for BGT, although I think more blindie kids, or pretty much anyone who has time can really benefit from unity becoming accessible. You really shouldn't dismiss these kinds of things so quickly. You should instead look at the reason why it would be such a huge deal. Why its important that we try to make these kinds of things accessible. I've said that when sabyl comes out we'll have games with simular mechanics, however if the creator has a big imagination, they can differentiate themselves by the storyline. The music, the map design, etc. And I think that's how all games seperate themselves. So the big deal is it will inject the accessible/audiogame market with a huge surplus of life.
Unity doesn't allow non-programmers to make games. You have to know programming to get anywhere with it even as a sighted developer.
Lifelines to people who don't know how to program at all don't get us better games. They only get us more of what we have. I don't want more of what we have, because frankly what we have sucks. I know it's sort of taboo to say that, but it's true. Games don't primarily differentiate themselves through everything but the gameplay; if that were true we'd call them movies or maybe visual novels. There are tons and tons of outlets for artistic blind people who don't want to learn to program; they don't need to make games that all have identical gameplay to all the other games. And I don't think this persistent idea that audiogames.net believes in where somehow you decide to learn whatever and then game occurs is particularly good either: even sighted programmers doing this quickly discover that games are actually one of the hardest things to code.
Unity being accessible and somehow ergonomic, or Godot, or whatever else, that'd be cool. I'm not dismissive because I don't want it, and Nolan is known to me and capable of making Godot happen if anyone can. Indeed, Godot being open source makes it not at all a bad place to try: it may be possible to turn off enough things.
I've spent a lot of time thinking about audiogames and the kinds of constraints audiogames need to have to be playable over the years, and (for example) most of what Unity does starts at figuring out what all you have to turn off (namely the third dimension, in many cases the concept of continuous space as opposed to tiles, etc). At the end of the day one of these being accessible might make some things easier--in particular networking is a big one--but it isn't going to be the end-all that people like to think it is.
Unity isn't sighted BGT, nor is it aimed at the same people. Unity starts well after where BGT stops teaching. They're not really even comparable. There is this idea that Unity is sighted BGT and if we have sighted BGT it's better than BGT, but that's not actually how this plays out.
The problems with audiogames aren't technical, they're social. Taking a sighted game engine and making it accessible to blind programmers isn't going to suddenly make the programming easier. What makes the programming easier is one of us who has a lot of experience here having the time to write a book or something to that effect, or getting a time machine and making everyone start fumbling around with Python in 2014 or so so that the audiogaming circles would now have good experience with open source instead of being random BGT includes spread across dropboxes, or making people stop complaining and causing drama all the time so that when someone thinks about doing something paid or online their first thought isn't that they're going to have to deal with it for the rest of forever.
I know that if I leave that there I'm going to be misunderstood and then people are going to get mad at me for the wrong reasons, so let me be really clear in order that you can be mad at me for the right ones: I'm not saying that it's valueless if one of these are accessible; I'm saying that, if one of these being accessible fell out of the sky onto this forum tomorrow, it wouldn't change anything for anyone who is still trying to learn to program because it's not aimed at people who are trying to learn to program in the first place, and it wouldn't fix the social problems that have held us back for as long as I've been on this site. A couple years or more after it happened we'd still have the sorts of games we have now instead of this mythical better thing that they're supposed to enable, save perhaps for a few by people who could have done without the tools to start with. That doesn't mean the tools couldn't be helpful, but the tools aren't coming to save us, even if someone had infinity money to throw at Unity, because not having Unity isn't currently the primary problem.
@17, the first part of your post made me think of visual programming which I despise. I won't derail the topic any further. But we could always discuss that somewhere else (I think there was a topic about it somewhere on here...).
#19 (edited by camlorn 2020-03-27 16:42:54)
You and almost everyone else on here are too young to have been around for Audiogame Maker in 2008 or so (possibly as early as 2006--it's been too long for me to get dates right). We had a visual programming no-coding-required option that's exactly what Sable is trying to do and what people are hoping Unity is. And even though development of it stopped, if I recall because their office literally caught fire (and yes, it had enough resources to have offices), it still showed that such tools don't suddenly lead to an audiogaming boom.
Also it was the blind person equivalent of visual programming.
@19, I've tried it. And it definitely wasn't fun to work with. I just don't see the point of visual programming -- its far too restrictive. I believe that if people want to code they should... you know... actually have to write out the code. Unit isn't quite like visual programming -- you still have to write the C# code. Same for UE -- you still need to write C++.
Yes, which is why I say that Audiogame maker is what people hope Unity is, not actually what Unity is.
@19, I remember that agm thing and how it made that possible in a very very limited way to make games
@everyone else, why don't you try panda3d?
it's open source, has 3d physics (which audio games currently don't provide but they can),, has networking capabilities in a higher level, the license is simplified bsd and so on.
also, it is based on nodes which we can understand more easier and it uses python for game development and everything else is done in c++ (basically it's a c extension to python), it's under active development, has an active forum (but not to much) has a discord server and so on.
Because 3d audio games effectively can't happen. Panda3d, etc. are as many degrees of freedom as the real world. It's not possible to turn that into something fun and playable. Indeed even keeping the character upright is a complicated thing you have to go out of your way to get right.
We have exactly one audiogame that is (almost) as 3D as panda3d. that would be Audioquake. It ended at so many keystrokes and navigational aids that they can't all be on your keyboard at once.
Even with the world's best HRTF, it's not possible to get good-enough vertical positioning for vertical aiming, and how you communicate the orientation of the character without being able to literally spin the player's chair sideways I can't even begin to imagine. At least in Audioquake, you can't be knocked on your side, but with full 3D physics in the modern fashion you absolutely can.
There is something to be said for the collaboration angle, and also for the networking/distribution angle, but at the end of the day without vision the subset of games that can be made accessible even with infinite resources is quite small. Imagine trying to use Swamp-style navigational aids in the real world.
Unity, Panda3D, etc. simulate the real world damned near perfectly. In particular, Unity is used by self-driving car researchers because it's simulation is so good. It works well with vision because for a sighted person that's an immersive experience. But for a blind person that's "now we're going to put you somewhere unfamiliar and chop off your hands and give you this beepy cane, good luck". You have to file off some of the realism that sighted people want for the sake of accessibility, and at the end of the day some of the realism is "the entire third dimension". And then for something like BK3, you even have to get rid of fully continuous movement in the name of playability. This is why I find sighted game development tools a dead end from a technical perspective: you spend a lot of effort trying to get rid of features.
Plus, all that aside, good luck debugging a 3D physics engine with zero vision. Been there, tried that, it's not fun.
#24 (edited by visualstudio 2020-03-28 10:22:31)
@23, you are somehow right.
but we can have fully 3d audio games (I don't meann graphics).
I mean audio games can have 3d physics as they do have 2d physics with box2d or so.
the term ridgid body is used in both 2d and 3d physics, + panda or unity have support for best physics engines (you don't need to roll your physics engine when you have bullet).
I didn't try soft bodies, but I think that is possible with bullet as well for audio game development.
regarding debugging physics stuff, you can do try and error for simple bodies (don't think of bodies with many ridgid bodies at all as you require a bit of vision).
but as what I can see, thats possible somehow with help of these engines (I'm not talking about entirely open world games).
at least, for a blind person, development might seem easier with the help of nodes and node paths (this is what I say).
at camlorn, actually maybe you're right, but i'm not one of those that hoped that unity is just something that wouldn't require coding skills. but i thought it could help me to design more easier an audiogame in C#.
i've seen that the guys from ticonblu use unity for their games and i really liked that experience, so that's why i was interested in it. besides, the reason i wanted to know about it and it's accessibility things is because i was thinking of trying to start making games with some help from the sighted community so we could play all the same game.