60 functions to make it a game for everyone

PlayStation took advantage of this Thursday, May 19, World Accessibility Awareness Day, to present the sixty accessibility features that will be available in the next God of War Ragnarök.

God of War Ragnarök // Source: Santa Monica Studio

After the good feedback received by The Last of Us Part II, Ratchet & Clank Rift Apart or Horizon Forbidden Westit is difficult for PlayStation not to release one of these blockbusters without it offering multiple settings to make its game as accessible as possible.

Before knowing the exact release date of the game, God of War Ragnarök revealed himself a little more through a post of blog. But PlayStation has mostly taken advantage of this, and of World Accessibility Awareness Day, to showcase the accessibility features that will be available in the upcoming title from Santa Monica Studio. And they will be 60 in number, already including those present on God of War, sorti and 2018.

god of war ragnarok
God of War Ragnarök // Source: Santa Monica Studio

To begin, Santa Monica Studio announces that it has completely redesigned the interface of God of War. Compared to the previous title released on PS4, then PC, this one promises to be more flexible and readable. The keys have been reassigned and it will be much easier to customize the controls for the combat and interaction systems. This obviously speaks as much to very skilled able-bodied players as to those who can rely on their motor skills a little less. It will then be much easier to adjust the keys, sticks and triggers according to its possibilities.

What’s new to expect

No, making a game accessible doesn’t just mean adding an easy mode to it. It is often the poorly adapted settings that are the problem, much more than the level of difficulty of the game. Game developers and console manufacturers have understood this for a long time. and everything now goes through good settings and the provision of multiple functions to allow everyone, regardless of their disability, to take possession of the game.

The improved interface

This is often a delicate point poorly considered by developers: the interface. Text too small, menu too complex, difficulty finding the parameters you are looking for. Santa Monica Studio promises to have adjusted this concern on the bottom and the form. The size of the text of the interface can be pushed in XXL version and not only in the game. The menus will also better extend to the size of the screen to be consulted from afar.

The icons will also be more visible with an XL mode to appear larger on the screen.

god of war ragnarok icone XL
The icons are growing // Source: Santa Monica Studio

On the button side of the controller, you will have access to a wider range of predefined configurations as well as the possibility of reassigning them in a personalized way. Alternative configurations will be offered for complex actions as well as individual keys. Configure Kratos’ Rage of Sparta, move forward more easily or turn around, all of this can be managed from the touchpad or with several keys.

Rich subtitles

Among the sensitive points for visually impaired players, the subtitles have been reinforced on the future God of War Ragnarök. As with previous exclusives, PS4 and PS5 will offer extensive customization of the display. Everything will be adjustable, from the increased minimum size (with a bonus XL size) to the color (7 offered) through the text background area enlarged to match cinema standards and even darker for stand out better, adding a blur to make them more readable too…

This is in addition to the possibility of activating or not the name of the speaker in the subtitles, to assign it a color and a text size which can be different for each character. Even the font color can change depending on the character.

God of War Ragnarok  sous-titres
It will be possible to assign a color to the name of the speaker in the subtitles // Source: Santa Monica Studio

This also comes with closed captioning available in the choices (show transcript of scene elements, noise, song, hiss, etc.) and a direction indicator to know where a sound is coming from . An important element when puzzles require sound clues to be solved.

A more complete contrast mode

Most of the new features are aimed primarily at people who are visually impaired or have impaired vision. The contrast and color settings are therefore essential, whether for the characters, the elements and objects to be highlighted, the enemies…

The contrast has therefore been accentuated. By activating it, an additional layer of color is applied to the characters which will be much better detached from the background (this one benefits from customization of the level of contrast). The same goes for loot, in-game effects, or journeys. Contrast mode can be toggled on/off by sliding your finger on the touchpad. It is however disabled in the settings and character menus.

As in The Last of Us Part II, the various visual problems (color blindness, deuteranopia, tritanopia, etc.) can be compensated with a personalization of the choice of colors. It is possible to individually adjust the colors to enemies, characters or objects.

Enhanced gameplay support

Navigation assistance to direct the view in the direction of the next objective, movement assistance to more easily overcome obstacles or hide or even assistance for movement interactions (climbing, crouching, infiltration) can be automated.

For audio, Sony promises on-screen sound interaction for every feature used. In particular, this will allow you to know when to press a key when an interaction is nearby. Audio clues are also provided during fights, to know the possible or impossible attack zones, and the volume will be adjustable.

PC settings on PS4 and PS5

Some functions had been added on the PC version of God of War and will be reverted to the PS4 and PS5 versions of Ragnarök. This is particularly the case of the automatic race made possible by briefly moving the joystick in one direction to start running. You choose the time required for activation.

It will also be possible to activate a central point of the screen (3 sizes and 7 colors to choose from) to avoid the risk of nausea due to the movement of the camera by thus defining markers (Lingering point). The aim and shield stances will also be made available in the settings, with the possibility of enabling/disabling them or maintaining them permanently.

For several years, accessibility has become a value widely taken into account in video games to support players with disabilities. Giants like Xbox, PlayStation, Electronic Arts or even Ubisoft want to do everything to…
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