access to adventure games for Deaf-blind.

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michael gerwat

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Sep 19, 2000, 3:00:00 AM9/19/00
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Hi all. I am a DeafBlind person and have been playing adventure games
for over ten years. I would like help in introducing adventure games to
the DeafBlind world. I edit our British magazine for DeafBlind called
Rainbow. One of the biggest problems is actually accessing and
understanding adventure games. This sounds strange? Only now in the UK,
are deafBlind people getting access to computers, mostly with Braille
displays. Myself, I use speech since I have a cochlea implant that can
hear computers very clearly.

Firstly then, some of the DOS executables such as, "jacaranda Jim,
humbug and Lunatics" have problems in that, the text is there but you
have to search around for it to read with speech. Tads, inform agt, with
the /b switch and Alan, all work fine however with both speech and
Braille displays.

I want to run a starter adventure game course at Rainbow court, our
headquarters in the UK. I wondered if anyone of you had any thoughts as
to how to go about this. Remember, although I know all about adventure
games, I need to be able to explain to others how to use them.

It means really getting down to basics. The Faqu's are wonderful, but I
need an even more basic level to get peoples interest. It's all too easy
for one who knows adventure games to just wade in and people not
understand. Would there be any games, about adventure games. Say some
details written in the style of a small simple adventure game? I've had
so much pleasure from these games you all right that I want to share it
with our community.

Unfortunately, programs like winfrotz, although they do display the
text, don't read it back in speech. You have to search the screen for
any new text. Are there any frotz settings that may make the text read
back to the synthesizer, as the /b switch does with agt? Your thoughts
on this and my other questions would be welcome. Let's put adventure
games in to the hands of my community with your help. Sorry to take up
so much of your time. Thanking you all in advance.
--
michael gerwat

Sandsquish

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Sep 19, 2000, 10:19:16 PM9/19/00
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michael gerwat (mic...@grate.demon.co.uk) wrote:

<<Would there be any games, about adventure games. Say some details written in

the style of a small simple adventure game.>>

Both of Infocom's samplers, which can be found at the IF-Archive in the
infocom/demos/ directory have small tutorials in the form of adventure games. I
think the "Wishbringer" one in Sampler 2 is the closest to what you're looking
for.

- Walt


John E

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Sep 20, 2000, 3:00:00 AM9/20/00
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Hello,

I've had problems with screen readers and interactive fiction.
I am a sighted person who does work with someone who creates games
for the blind.

I've tried the JAWS screen reader and other programs and do not know
how to get the text to be read automatically. I can't get Inform
to work at all. What screen reader do you use and what Inform
interpreter do you use?

In regards to your example request. I have a site at
http://www.citycafe.com/if
that takes someone step by step through a sample game.
The site is entirely text. If you could show me how best
to access these games with a text reader (alas I think a braille
reader is out of my price range) I'd be happy to modify the
example to be specific to the needs of the blind or blind/deaf.

There is a great company that makes games for the blind that are
sound or speech friendly at http://www.pcsgames.com/

Hope that helps,
John Escobedo
john...@earthlink.net

Frisco

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Sep 20, 2000, 3:00:00 AM9/20/00
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>
> Unfortunately, programs like winfrotz, although they do display the
> text, don't read it back in speech. You have to search the screen for
> any new text. Are there any frotz settings that may make the text read
> back to the synthesizer, as the /b switch does with agt? Your thoughts
> on this and my other questions would be welcome. Let's put adventure
> games in to the hands of my community with your help. Sorry to take up
> so much of your time. Thanking you all in advance.
> --
> michael gerwat

I'm actually pretty sure that there is a screen reader for Inform games (and
most likely TADS as well), as I had the recent pleasure of meeting the
editor of a visually impaired gaming magazine called Audyssey, and our
conversations took us to games that he had really enjoyed like So Far,
Curses, and Spiritwrak. He didn't mention what sort of software he used, but
he did explain some of the mechanics behind the program to me and it sounded
really interesting.

Mike (Audyssey's editor) is also a fountain of knowledge with respect to the
visually-impaired gaming scene, and knows about many new developments in the
industry as programmers and developers often drop him a line before they
mass produce something. In this respect, he may be able to help out with
some of your other questions as well.

His e-mail address is:
Micha...@csi.com

(I'm pretty sure he doesn't mind me giving this out as it's pretty much
public anyway)

and if you want to receive Audyssey via e-mail, you can subscribe to a
distribution list run by Esp Softworks by going to:

http://www.espsoftworks.com/forms/audyssey_to.asp

Even for the non-visually impaired, I would recommend Audyssey as a good
read. They usually have a handful of IF reviews (when I've spotted one from
an author I'm familiar with, I've always tried to notify that author of its
existence) in the review and "What's New!" sections, as well as the odd
debate (i.e., Is Anchorhead's violence to disturbing?), and the odd
interview with someone in the IF community.

Hope this helps,


Francesco


sg...@my-deja.com

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Sep 21, 2000, 3:00:00 AM9/21/00
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In article <YRlf3GAo...@grate.demon.co.uk>,
michael gerwat <mic...@grate.demon.co.uk> wrote:

[snip]

> Firstly then, some of the DOS executables such as, "jacaranda Jim,
> humbug and Lunatics" have problems in that, the text is there but you
> have to search around for it to read with speech. Tads, inform agt,
with
> the /b switch and Alan, all work fine however with both speech and
> Braille displays.

Hugo games should also work. A version of the MSDOS Hugo game-player
which is optimised for screen-readers was recently released.

ftp://ftp.gmd.de/if-archive/programming/hugo/executables/

> I want to run a starter adventure game course at Rainbow court, our
> headquarters in the UK. I wondered if anyone of you had any thoughts
as
> to how to go about this. Remember, although I know all about adventure
> games, I need to be able to explain to others how to use them.
>
> It means really getting down to basics. The Faqu's are wonderful, but
I
> need an even more basic level to get peoples interest.


Some of the games include introductory tutorials
eg:

'The Meteor, the Stone and a Long Glass of Sherbet' Inform game by
Graham Nelson (The help menu gives access to the tutorial. I guess the
help menu itself may be a problem for screen reader software.)

http://www.ifarchive.org/if-archive/games/zcode/sherbet.z5

'The Plant' TADS game by Mike Roberts (and some other TADS games) have
a long text tutorial embedded in them - type 'instructions'

http://www.ifarchive.org/if-archive/games/tads/plant_2.zip

There are some other documents around that introduce the basics of
playing text games. Some of the IF webpages have such things but I
can't think of any right now. I'm sure Stephen Granade has got an
excellent tutorial at his About.Com website, I'll just take a look ....
yip here it is

http://interactfiction.about.com/games/interactfiction/library/weekly/aa
022100a.htm

As usual with Stephen's articles its very informative and
comprehensive. However it may also be a bit hard to read with a screen
reader because of all the typical About.Com advertisements and indexes
scattered about the screen.

There is one plain text tutorial in the Starters directory at the IF
Archive

http://www.ifarchive.org/if-archive/starters/Beginner.txt


>It's all too easy
> for one who knows adventure games to just wade in and people not
> understand. Would there be any games, about adventure games. Say some
> details written in the style of a small simple adventure game? I've
had
> so much pleasure from these games you all right that I want to share
it
> with our community.
>

> Unfortunately, programs like winfrotz, although they do display the
> text, don't read it back in speech.

and the DOS programs don't work with the Windows screen readers, do
they?

> You have to search the screen for
> any new text. Are there any frotz settings that may make the text read
> back to the synthesizer, as the /b switch does with agt?

I don't know about the switches for winfrotz. The only dialog that
might be relevant is the screen update frequency (set under the menu
item View / Display Options.) One thought I have is that there's other
Windows Inform game interpreters which may possibly work better with
Windows screen readers.

http://www.ifarchive.org/if-archive/infocom/interpreters/zip/wzip21.zip

ftp://ftp.gmd.de/if-archive/infocom/interpreters/nitfol/nitfol05.exe

> Your thoughts
> on this and my other questions would be welcome. Let's put adventure
> games in to the hands of my community with your help. Sorry to take up
> so much of your time. Thanking you all in advance.
> --
> michael gerwat


Sent via Deja.com http://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.

Stephen Granade

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Sep 21, 2000, 3:00:00 AM9/21/00
to
sg...@my-deja.com writes:

> There are some other documents around that introduce the basics of
> playing text games. Some of the IF webpages have such things but I
> can't think of any right now. I'm sure Stephen Granade has got an
> excellent tutorial at his About.Com website, I'll just take a look ....
> yip here it is
>
> http://interactfiction.about.com/games/interactfiction/library/weekly/aa
> 022100a.htm
>
> As usual with Stephen's articles its very informative and
> comprehensive. However it may also be a bit hard to read with a screen
> reader because of all the typical About.Com advertisements and indexes
> scattered about the screen.

This should prove the inducement I've been needing to make a
no-frame-and-blinky-ads-on-the-side version of that document.

Stephen

--
Stephen Granade | Interested in adventure games?
sgra...@phy.duke.edu | Visit About Interactive Fiction
Duke University, Physics Dept | http://interactfiction.about.com

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