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Global accessibility awareness day 2021

Collection of announcements, initiatives, launches and events from this year's event

GAAD - Global Accessibility Awareness Day

Global Accessibility Awareness Day is event that takes place on the third Thursday of every May, with the goal of raising awareness about digital accessibility. Every successive year the games industry has been embracing it to ever greater levels

Even with the usual in-person events still not being possible, 2021 saw the biggest involvement yet by far by the games industry. Rather than raising awareness it felt like a festival, a celebration of inclusion. Including personal stories from gamers, announcements of new featuresets, initiatives and resources, articles, streams, and much much more.

There was so much happening that it was hard to keep track of . So here's a handy list! 

If you want to help keep the momentum going, have a skim through, pick your favourite, share it on.

Accessibility Days

Talks on a development platform for blind accessible games, and the development of a spaghetti western audiogame


Keynote talk on the good in gaming, by Tara Voelker

Talk by Steven Lambert on designing accessible games

Activision Blizzard

Article showcasing the accessibility work of Adrian Letta (Toys for Bob), Nikki Crenshaw (Blizzard), and Emilio Jéldrez (King)

Alan Zucconi

Thread of tips and resources

Allied podcast

Episode with Belén Agulló García, discussing the importance of accessible gaming and immersive experiences.

Améliane Chiasson

Post-GAAD beer/tea meetup


App store accessible games showcase

Barrie Ellis (OneSwitch)

Accessible gaming lucky dip collection of recent news

And some game accessibility history from he early 1970s

And earlier still

Barrierefreiheit in Deutschland

Panel discussion with Felix Falk (Game – Verband der deutschen Games-Branche) Maxi Gräff (Xbox DACH) Rebekka Niederländer (Mixtvision) and Dennis Winkens (WheelyWorld), and screening of a film created as a collaboration between Xbox DACH and the
German Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired


Talk from Vivek Gohil and a panel with Nu McAdam, Andrew Bromilow and Brannon Zahand

Bend Studio

Blog post showcasing features in Days Gone

Be Player One

Week long talk showcase

Ben Bayliss

Thread of his favourite accessibility focussed articles and a bit about his journey

BrookLAN Esports Lounge

Announcement of XACs and other accessibility options from day 1 of the facility opening


Thread from Courtney Craven on intersectionality and the future of the site

Data on the growth of the site


Article and one-pager poster on how gaming is emerging as a leading space in inclusive design and progressive thinking


Thread of tips and resources on how to make gmes made with the Crayta platform more accessible


PS5 giveaway, with lots of lovely stories being shared on the #DAGERSystemGAAD twitter hashtag

Announcement of the Accessibility Games Database

Diamond award given to Miles Morales

David Libeau

PhD project that aims to offer auto-generated audio description for streamed footage


A close look at the various accessibility features in Psychonauts 2

Family Video Game Database

Launch of accessibility tag search and accessibility reports, in partnership with the VSC ratings board

Showcase of games enjoyed by autistic people, put together in collaboration with Autistica's Play Ambassadors

Fox News

Interview with Randy "N0M4D" Fitzgerald

Frankfurter Allgemeine

Article by Melanie "melly maeh" Eilert, including chat with Jan Wawrzik of Ubisoft

Game Maker's Toolkit

Tips for making YouTube videos more accessible

Game Verband der Deutschen Games-Branche

Germany's games industry body sharing research showing that 7.6 million German gamers are disabled, 10% of whom use assistive devices


30 minute TV show on game accessibility (Portuguese)

Grimoire Groves

Footage of colourblind simulation testing

Hannah Elizabeth

Twitch stream highlighting accessible games

Humphrey "nohandsnoexcuses" Hanley

Full day of Twitch fun

Hunterson Studio

Announcement of accessibility featureset for Mine 2 the Beat

Ian Hamilton

Annual GAAD game accessibility trivia quiz

IGDA Game Accessibility SIG

GAconf accessibility quotes screensaver

Game accessibility top ten refresh


Accessibility category for Austrian Game Developer Awards, and reworking of accessibility criteria for all other categories

Imaginary Friends Games

Unveiling of captioning functionality for important sounds


Long tweet thread announcing the full accessibility featureset for Ratchet and Clank

Internet Matters

Guide for gamers on some of the ways games can be made more accessible


Showcase of ten accessible games

Jameson Durall

Twitch chat with Tara Voelker

Jesse "IllegallySighted" Anderson

Showcase of past content


Steve Saylor co-hosting

Knights of the Braille

Announcement of a new accessibility awareness event for tabletop games this october, called Everyone Games

Kyle "onehandmostly" Abbate

Week long highlighting of accessibility features that are important to him

Level Access

Chief accessibility officer Jonathan Avila shares why game accessibility matters to him

Logitech G

Creator spotlight twitch stream series, with Jay Justice, Radderssgaming, nohandsnoexcuses, and Steve Spohn

Announcement of the Adaptive eSports Tournament

Many Cats Studios

60 second accessibility tips

Media Molecule

Showcase of accessible games created in Dreams


Launch of the Xbox Accessibility Insider League, a new feedback mechanism within the insider hub to allow developers to get accessibility feedback direct from players

Updated Xbox Customer Support Page for Accessibility

Launch of a new resource - the Gaming and Disability Player Experience Guide, a supplement to the Xbox Accessiblity Guidelines that organizes common barriers to gameplay and related best practice guidelines by type of disability

Showcasing winners of CIPT, DAGERS and TGA accessibility awards in the Xbox and Windows stores

Donations to AbleGamers, Warfighter Engaged and Special Olympics

GAAD wallpaper

Understanding Function to Design for Disabilities -  a framework outlining the cognitive, mobility, vision, hearing, speech, and sensory demands of the technology we all use daily

Xbox ANZ video with Humphrey "nohandsnoexcuses" Hanley

Tara Voelker & Steve Saylor Twitch stream

Talk by Ryo Morishita of for GAAD Japan

CanIPlayThat community management workshop

Xbox DACH & Tino Albrecht tips for an Xbox Adaptive Controller setup for duchenne muscular dystrophy


Showcasing accessibility features, including three new ones

Mitchell B

Blind playthrough of Mario Tennis Aces


Interview with Steve Saylor

Netspeak Games

Sharing a collection of resources


Video preview of accessibility features in Agent Intercept



Blog post showcasing the company's work on accessible hardware, software, workplaces, and support of partner organisations

..including opening up their internal inclusive language guide as a publicly available resource[email protected]ge-Guide-1.pdf

London Studio sharing the collection of accessibility resources they use to educated themselves on making games accessible to all

Detailed look at some of the key accessibility considerations in Ratchet & Clank

Interview on accessibility consultancy with Morgan Baker, Paul Amadeus Lane and Brandon Cole

Raven Software

Announcement of new accessibility menu for COD Warzone


Fundraiser and blind gaming video

Blind gamers podcast


Tweets from Simon Brewer


Internal panel session with Stacey Jenkins, Amy Kavanagh, Ben Bayliss and Kyle "onehandmostly" Abbate

Soft Leaf Studios

Thread of resources

Thread on their experiences of working with the community on text to speech and audio description for Stories of Blossom

Thread of dev tools

Demo of text to speech and audio description


Launch of a wide-reaching accessibility update


Blog post on embracing and sharing accessibility

Splash Damage

Week long series of internal talks

Square Enix

Internal talk series with Steve Saylor, Kyle Abbate and Regine Gilbert

The Coalition

Showcase of Gears 5's new features


Showcase of past accessibility articles


Front page takeover with Steve Saylor, Radderssgaming Steve Spohn, Tiffany Witcher, DeafGamersTV, Ewok, nohandsnoexcuses, Brandon Cole, and more!

Session on how to make twitch streams more accessible, with Steve Saylor, Veronica Ripley and Humphrey "nohandsnoexcuses" Hanley


Video showcasing where the company is today

Video showcasing accessibility efforts from Naughty Dog, Xbox and SpecialEffect

Video showcasing Björn Jönnson and his participation on workshops on Division 2

Undead Labs

Case study of an inclusive design sprint for State of Decay 2


Tweets & articles highlighting the work of accessibility organisations


Twitch stream with Brian Peddie

Vivek Gohil

A deep dive into his accessibility journey and set-up

Wayward Strand

Announcement of accessibility consultancy

Twitch stream on indie accessibility, with Access Unlocked

Interview with Pixelsift


Profile article on disabled streamers who are changing the industry

Article on accessibility making games better, with personal experiences of accessibility for narcolepsy


GAAD 2022 is set for May 20th!

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