How are creators tweaking technology to get every player in the game? | #GHC16


Technology applications can stand or fall on the facility of the user interface. Some household names like Google rose to the top of the heap largely because they were just one or two clicks easier to use than competitors. Video and virtual reality games must focus on user interaction even more obsessively. Increasingly, creators strive to make gaming a seamless experience for diverse individual users.

Adina Shanholtz, technical evangelist at Microsoft, said that tweaks to settings in games can allow a greater number of people to enjoy games. She talked with co-host Rebecca Knight (@knightrm) and guest host Pooja Sivaraman (@poojasiv), TechTruth reporting fellow, on theCUBE, from the SiliconANGLE Media team, during the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing. Shanholtz said that relatively simple things like closed captions can make a difference.

“Did you actually know that the average gamer is in their mid to late 30s? So most of these gamers that are buying your games actually have kids, so you might have to play games after the family’s asleep or something like that,” she said.

Video game controller

Shanholtz said that some game creators are taking disability, gender identity issues and other things into account.

“I know that colorblindness is a pretty common one, so when you’re game is color-based pattern matching, and you’re playing your mobile game, you should always have an option to turn on colorblind mode where instead of colors, you have patterns or something like that,” she said.

She added that having all these extra settings can increase the richness of gaming even for people they were not originally intended for. “I always make sure to turn on my subtitles for my games, because it’s always good to make sure you understand the process of what’s going on,” she said.

Watch the complete video interview below, and be sure to check out more of SiliconANGLE and theCUBE’s coverage of the Anita Borg Institute’s Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing.

Photo by SiliconANGLE