The Last of Us Part 2 Lead Systems Designer Shows Vision Accessibility Prototype From 2018

The Last of Us Part 2 Lead Systems Designer Shows Vision Accessibility Prototype From 2018

Ben Bayliss2 minute read

The Last of Us Part 2 took the accessibility in the video games world by storm earlier this year when it launched exclusively for PS4. It saw one of the most in-depth selections of accessibility features seen in a single game to this date and has allowed a large range of players to enjoy the game. Some of the stand-out features were those that allowed players who are blind or have low vision to play the game to completion.

Matthew Gallant, Lead Systems Designer at Naughty Dog has shared a prototype of some of the vision accessibility settings, such as high-contrast mode and sound prompts, in action. The video is uploaded to Matthew’s YouTube channel and is footage from 2018. You can watch the video below.

Looking at the menu in its early days is certainly cool to look at, and in the video, the option is listed as “Vision Accessibility Mode” which would later become it’s own preset alongside many other features.

It shows Ellie in blue with a friendly character in a sort of orange/yellow while the surroundings turn black and white. There’s arrows on the floor to direct the player, but these come with the directional sounds to help the player traverse.

There’s also more sound effects exampled such as the objective sound, and the button prompt sound. We also get to see some of the stealth and scanning elements in action for The Last of Us Part 2, also with directional audio cues.

Matthew lists some of the devs who had a hand in the prototype video, with Game Designer, Arnaldo Licea working on the hostile territory layout, with work-in-process art by, Alex Harrington (Environment Texture Artist), Jeremy Huxley (Senior Texture/Environment Artist), and Martin Teichmann (Environment Artist).

There were even more prototype videos revealed during this years GAConf 2020 during a talk from Emilia Schatz & Matthew Gallant.

The Last of Us Part 2 is available on PS4.

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Ben Bayliss

Ben is the one in charge of keeping the content cogs at Can I Play That? turning. Deafness means that he has a focus on discussing captions, but with experience in consultancy and advocacy, he covers what bases he can. Having written about accessibility in video games at DualShockers, GamesRadar+, GamesIndustry.biz, Wireframe, and more he continues his advocacy at CIPT. He was actually awarded a Good Games Writing award for an article he wrote here! He enjoys a range of games, but anything that’s open-world and with a photo mode will probably be his cup of tea. You can get in touch with him at: ben@caniplaythat.com

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