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Accessibility - Design for All in the Zombie Apocalypse
Accessibility is hugely important to Epitaph, but we're not yet where we want to be with regards to that. The long term goal for Epitaph is to incorporate all possibility accessibility features in order to make the game playable by all individuals regardless of personal circumstances. This is an ongoing project, and if you have any comments, suggestions or ideas for how we can improve the accessibility of the game, please talk to Drakkos about them.
Accessibility Options for the Blind
Currently, we offer a reasonable range of accessibility supports for blind players. Much of the day to day text can be toned down through the use of 'brief', which reduces game output down to the minimum whilst still maintaining full information content. Earmuffs can be used to switch off whole categories of output, ensuring even finer control over what text is sent to your system. Many prompts and informs can be switched off from the 'options' menu, such as within 'options inform' which will allow you to switch off login quotes, tips, vote reminders and so on.
A number of commands on Epitaph have columns for display, and these can be switched into simple lists using 'options mud_output columns_to_list=false'. ASCII maps can be switched off through 'options navigation map'.
If you want to quickly set yourself up with an optimal set of options for a screenreader, you can use the screenreader command. This allows you to switch screenreader support on and off. If you switch it off, your previous settings will be restored.
Visual maps are a problem for many people, and so our larger areas (such as Dunglen) offer the opportunity to take your 'bearings' - this will give you physical landmarks and where they are in relation to your current position. Not all areas support this - many areas are too small to permit for such landmarks, but the bigger cities will have this enabled.
Accessibility is an aspirational goal for Epitaph, and while we have been in development we haven't had the direct player feedback required to push it as hard as we can. Shortly after Epitaph goes live, the Accessibility 2.0 project will begin - this will involve an intensive program of accessibility fixes driven by players and eventually written up as academic research on creating inclusive text games. If you would be interested in participating in this project, please contact Drakkos.