Deaf/HOH Game Review- Nioh 2

Michael Anthony3 minute read

Nioh 2 Deaf Accessibility

Generally accessible to Deaf/HOH gamers, but there are some gaps that could be addressed.


7 out of 10

Hello from my toilet paper fortified home bunker here in beautiful Seattle! I hope everyone is doing well and healthy in these precarious times. I come forth bearing a social-distancing friendly review for you today. We’ll be going through Nioh 2 which Courtney briefly covered with their experience with the early Demos over the last month.

Nioh 2 is a follow up to a tough as nails game that launched in 2017 to much acclaim. In this game we take place before the first game as a half human half gaikai (demon) protagonist that is trying to find meaning in their mother’s murder. The game plays similar to most souls-like with a heavy emphasis on items.

Similar to the first game, Nioh 2 has settings to independently change text and voice languages. There is no option to turn off text so you will always have subtitles enabled. However, you are still unable to change the font size, but the default size is quite readable and even comes with a black background that mitigates any potential contrast issues. There’s still generally no speaker indicator though.

Audio settings.
Settings for audio, shows overall volume, music, sound effects, and voice
Language settings
Language settings let you independently change spoken and text language. Subtitles are always on.
Illustrating the subtitles.
Sample of subtitle presentation in the game

Unfortunately, there’s still no audible cues for anything that may affect you as a player. There’s no indicator that an arrow is being launched at you from a camera angle you can’t see. The only outcome of this is you take an arrow to your knee, however involuntary it is. To the game’s credit if you draw the attention of other enemies nearby, the mini-map turns red indicating you probably should put your guard up. Depending on how close these ranged enemies are you may still not get the notification though

Illustrating the lack of visual sound cues.
There’s an archer in the distance aiming at the player, but if I wasn’t looking that way, I would not have noticed.

Overall there’s not a lot that gets in the way of a Deaf player beyond that as far as I can tell. All other types of indicators are there like the mini-map hint indicated above, enemy telegraphs are visual and not audible, and all text is easily visible in the game.

As a general review on this game. It seems that they’ve refined the formula quite well in this game. The typical map progression of a dark-souls like game is still intact here, but the levels feel a bit flatter than the first game. there’s not a lot of hidden paths and the shortcuts you can unlock are fairly linear. I’m still working my way through the game so maybe it’ll improve later on.

In the end though the game is fairly accessible for what it is and still a lot of fun to play while sneaking around the levels searching for those sneaky kodamas. Oh! And prepare to die…… a lot

The Nioh 2 death screen.
I died, yet again.

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