The second Xbox Accessibility Showcase is here

Ben Bayliss3 minute read

Xbox is hosting its second Xbox Accessibility Showcase which will see a month-long celebration of the disability community. Today sees the start of this celebration, hosted by Steve Saylor at the Microsoft Inclusive Tech Lab, in the form of a 40-minute video.

As detailed in the official blog post, The showcase focuses on sharing stories of disabled players, a spotlight on SpecialEffect, and a look at some upcoming games with accessibility features such as Stories of Blossom, and Pentiment. The showcase also announces new features heading to the Xbox ecosystem.

The stream will officially start at 9am PT on YouTube and Twitch and will be available in ASL on the dedicated Xbox ASL Twitch stream and also on YouTube as a separate stream. An audio-described version is available, and there are subtitles available on YouTube in a number of languages.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9xnLnkOU0as

Xbox Accessibility Support Page

A screenshot of the Xbox Accessibility support page showing some articles related

Announced during the Xbox Accessibility Showcase, an updated Xbox Accessibility Support Page has been detailed. This will allow users to browse for over 20 accessibility features across PC and consoles. This goes hand-in-hand with the Accessibility Tags available directly from the Microsoft Store on Xbox. Additionally, users can find articles that can help detail how to set up co-pilot for PC, understanding the Xbox Adaptive Controller, and more.

Xbox Accessibility Guidelines Touch Control

The Xbox Accessibility Guidelines have seen a new addition for touch control under the input section. This has been added following community feedback and includes the best practices surrounding touch-based interfaces. Touch target sizing is detailed as are placement recommendations, swipe sensitivity, and supporting mobile-native input accessibility features.

Earlier this year, Xbox released a new mental health section for the guidelines as well as elements such as reducing motion sickness, text legibility, contrast, and more.

Microsoft Gaming Accessibility Testing Service

The Microsoft Gaming Accessibility Testing Service (MGATS) was also highlighted during the showcase. This detailed how Xbox is expanding the service to include a Players with Disability offering. Essentially, this service allows developers to receive direct feedback on their products from disabled players. This looks to be a useful form of user research that allows developers to get feedback prior to the full MGATS testing that spans across the 20+ Xbox Accessibility Guidelines.

Xbox Ambassador Accessibility Explorer Path

A white Xbox Ambassadors logo is shown in front of a green background with blue hues. The words “Xbox Ambassadors” is shown directly beneath the logo.

Xbox has also announced a new Xbox Ambassador Accessibility Explorer Path that is a new learning path designed to teach ambassadors about accessibility. This path will find users trying out platform and game accessibility features and learning about industry leaders and players with disabilities. Each season that rolls out will include new missions to try.

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Ben
BaylissEditor-in-ChiefHe/Him

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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