Film Victoria to only fund accessible games

Thursday, 1 December 2011 10:12am

Film Victoria has added accessibility to its requirements for game developers seeking funding for new projects.  Film Victoria is now the first government body to add accessibility to its funding criteria for game development. Developers must now consider how they can make their game accessible to people with a disability.

In an article in the Sydney Morning Herald Film Victoria CEO, Jenni Tosi, said the investment fund will contribute to “any costs the developer incurs as part of their accessibility efforts, which may include technology, testing or accessibility consultants.”  Film Victoria provides up to $100,000 or 50 per cent of the project budget for games developed in the state.

Some of these accessibility measures include using a colour blind friendly design, using high visibility graphics like large fonts and high contrast colour schemes, providing separate volume controls for music, sound effects and dialogue where applicable and using accessible menus.

According to Tosi, the gamer audience is similar in size to the cinema audience. Media Access Australia has previously reported that an estimated 20 per cent of gamers have a disability.

Film Victoria worked with the International Game Developers Association (IGDA) on the development of the accessibility requirements. The IGDA is a non-profit organisation for creators of video games. One of its mission statements is to “advocate on issues that affect the developer community.”

The IGDA also has a number of special interest groups including the IGDA Accessibility Special Interest Group which works to make games accessible to everyone. A list of ways developers can make their games accessible to people with a disability can be found on the IGDA Accessibility Special Interest Group website.


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