With 10 to 20% of the population considered disabled in one form or another, today's main Gamasutra feature, written by IGDA SIG member Kevin Bierre, serves as a primer on improving video game accessibility, referencing hardware and software approaches, as well as example of accessible games.
In his introduction, Bierre comments:
"For most gamers, the process of setting up a game and starting to play is pretty straight forward: install the game, skim over the instructions, and start playing. Unfortunately, people with disabilities find this process considerably harder.
The difficulty starts at the store. A disabled purchaser has no idea if a game is accessible to them or not. There are no ratings on the box that will indicate if the game is closed captioned or supports alternative input devices. In many cases, game ratings in the popular media do not address the accessibility issue, so for many purchasers, buying a game is very much a gamble.
After the game is installed, the player needs to often customize the settings to support their system and adaptive hardware. This is often not addressed in the documentation and most help desks have little experience dealing with these problems. Once in the game, further problems can occur."
Bierre goes on to discuss possible solutions, and you can now read the full Gamasutra feature
on the subject (no registration required, please feel free to link to the article from external websites).